Just go by a Nexus 4, if you like Samsung your stupid and wrong. I dare you to prove me wrong.
Nexus 4 Review
The Nexus 4 is the best phone on the market right now. Break your Samsung Galaxy S III in half and use it to fuel the fire to burn your iPhone 5. Read if you need more explanation.
I just have to get this out of the way. This is the highest quality device on the market and is half the price of its competitors. Off contract it is sold directly through Google for $299 - 8GB model or $349 -16GB model. This means no contract extension and the phone is unlocked, so you can use it without any compromises on sim card carriers like AT&T, T-mobile, prepaid cards, ect. You are looking at paying twice the amount for a similar phone off of contract and paying more means you will compromise more.
The biggest reason this phone is awesome is that it’s the only phone with 100% clean, pure, stock android. What that means is that it does not have any extra crap on it. You are not stuck with carrier pre installed apps, no 411 apps, no unneeded software taking up resources. This is the first phone to ship with android 4.2 which makes the phone fast, consistent, reliable, and pleasant to use. You have more control over this phone, than any other and it feels good. Really really good. You can chose to keep and not keep whatever app you want; You can even disable the phone app if you want to.
This is a Nexus device and that means you will get the latest greatest android before anyone else, because google loves you. The software will be developed with the exact same phone, so you will not have to worry about compatibility issues like every other android phone. You will not be stuck waiting for months to get updates; or worse, never getting the updates. Every single nexus device has gotten more updates than any other phone on the market keeping them up to date, relatively bug free and constantly evolving to become a better more useful device. It is really simple; if you get any other phone besides the Nexus 4, then you will be constantly playing catch up in the software game with subpar carrier add-ons and way too much bloatware.
This is highest quality android phone I have seen yet to date. You no longer need to feel jealous over the iphone’s high quality feel (in Josh’s opinion the Nexus 4 makes the Iphone feel absurdly small). I used to always think that my plastic android phone felt inferior to the iphone’s glass front and back and that really bothered me. No more the Nexus 4 has Gorilla glass on the front and back and is the smoothest feeling electronic device I have ever felt. Seriously, you need to rub a Nexus 4 up against your face to truly appreciate it.
This is something that I have to mention. This phone has the best buttons. It might seem like a little thing that should not make a big difference, but it makes all the difference in the world. The Nexus 4 has three touch screen buttons on the bottom: back, home, and multi tasking from left to right; no physical home button like a samsung Galaxy S III or a iPhone. I went crazy when I tried using a Samsung Galaxy S III and it’s button layout; so much so that I had to hack that crap and load a stock android rom that allowed me to put the Nexus buttons on it. Right now, I feel like I never want to ever use another button configuration. Long pressing for multitasking is a thing of the past. I was infuriated with Samsung when they put it on their phones last year. Once you go on screen touch buttons, you never go touchwhiz, which by the way is an absolutely stupid name.
Processor and Ram
There really is not a better processor that currently exists as of 2/9/13 than the quad core Qualcomm Snap Dragon S4 Pro processor. The Nexus 4 also has the most ram of any phone on the market with 2 GB. The phone uses takes advantage of it’s resources and you can feel how smooth everything on the phone is.
The phone on this phone will not disappoint. The average iphone user will hold it and initially think the screen is huge, but it is easy to hold and use in one hand and quickly becomes second nature to the point that is makes all smaller screens feel absurd. It is an IPS display, which means you can look at it at any angle and it is clear. The screen is a higher than 720 resolution and has a higher ppi (pixel per inch) than even the huge Samsung Galaxy Note II. It has just about the same ppi as the iphone, but the iphone has a much smaller screen, so you really cannot appreciate the resolution on an Iphone 5 like you can on the Nexus 4. There are new devices that have 1080p displays and reported to look amazing. However these are first generation screens that lower performance and battery life. The next wave of 1080p will be much better in the future and I am not willing to sacrifice quality for something that looks good on paper.
The speakers are average on the Nexus 4. The speakerphone and ringer are loud and that is what is most important to me. However, do not expect high quality bass when trying to listen to Lady Gaga or Demon Hunter.
This phone has an 8 mp camera with an led flash. The picture qualtiy is good, nothing spectacular like the Lumia 920’s but the camera does its job. I felt the camera was just about as good as my Samsung Galaxy S III, but I do have to say that the iPhone 4s and iPhone 5’s cameras are noticeably better. Still I don’t think most people will notice the difference.
The Nexus 4 brings a new feature that no other phone has; Photosphere- a feature that allows you to take 3D like images similar to google maps street view. it’s a cool feature, but honestly something I have not used on a regular basis.
What is very useful the the camera interface. Accessing settings for the camera is easy and only takes one or two swipes, something that other android devices have trouble with. I can turn flash off, on, switch the front or back camera, or toggle between picture or video quickly. This is the best camera interface I have used, but I do think that Google can make it better and this is the first step in the right direction.
The last thing i will mention about the camera is it’s built in photo editing. It is nothing groundbreaking, but it is simple, fast, and useful. I know that I can download a great photo editing app like snapseed, but I do not want to. I do not want to have to download 20 apps to make core features of my phone usable; I just want it to work.
Choices, Complaints, Compromises, Conspiracy:
Over these next few section I am going to talk about the potential downsides, upsides, and theories involving the Nexus 4 and what it means to the market. I will address my personal complaints, other complaints, Google’s choices and what it means in practical terms. Here we go!
My biggest problem with the nexus 4 is the lack of wifi calling. This is a feature that only exists on T-Mobile phones. Although this is phone is sold directly through T-Mobile(and Google of course); it does not have wifi calling. T-Mobile says that they need to modify the software in order for this phone to have wifi calling. Google refused to let anyone modify this phone is any way, so that means no wifi calling. The phone is completely unmodified by any carrier or any manufacturer; it is exactly the way google wanted it to be designed from the software to the hardware. No carrier apps, no carriers logos or names on the front or back, but just a “Nexus” and “LG” written on the back. This is something previously only apple has been able to accomplish in the past, so it is actually a good thing despite it losing wifi calling.
LTE & Radio
This device was advertised with pentaband hspa+ radio and no LTE, but upon investigating it turns out that it does have LTE band 4, which is what T-Mobile will be using and mainly what Canada companies use. So first off, a pentaband radio means that this phone can be used anywhere around the world with whatever sim card you put in it. Secondly, while it has a wrking LTE chip in it, T-Mobile is not launching LTE until sometime this year. That does not help the United States now. and some people really, really want and need LTE. Personally I am fortunate enough to be able to have wifi available in all the places that I constantly need fast internet. I also have hspa+ coverage with T-Mobile in the places the I visit and drive, so LTE is not a huge deal to me. Two other things I will throw out is that LTE uses your data a lot faster and kills your battery a lot faster. With that said, I would take amazing LTE coverage everywhere I go if it did not increase my monthly cost, cost of the device, or kill my battery life. Also all the major carriers use LTE at different frequencies. This means that Google making different models, with different chips, for different carriers, probably would have delayed this device coming out, and increased its price.
Internal Memory/No SD Card
The Nexus 4 comes in 8 GB and 16 GB models with no sd card slot. You have no other options. I hate to say this, but Google followed Apple and Apple was right. Not having a memory card slot makes android so much more user friendly and honestly less stressful. I have used several android and ios devices and the memory card makes things so much more messy. If you have an android phone will a memory card, then you are always wondering where files are being saved. Your photos could be on the internal memory, sd card, or both. You have the same problem with games, downloaded files, music, movies, and pretty much everything on your phone. Also, it is unfortunate, but true, that memory cards cannot access files as fast as the actual phone memory. Most people do not need or care about a removable sd card, but they want to have a larger amount of memory. No one would criticize the Nexus 4’s memory if it had a 150 GB’s of internal memory. Manufacturers have not found a way to make phones with that much memory affordable and a micro sd card is a cheap way to get more memory; not a better way to have memory.
Non Removable Battery
People are getting up in arms about the lack of a non removable battery. I have to say that this is something that I did not like at first. I am the guy who buys unnecessary battery accessories. I have bought huge extended batteries that triple the thickness of the phone just so I can have a bigger battery. I have bought cases that have extended batteries, multiple stock batteries, but I have faced the hard truth. Like the sd card is a cheap way to have larger memory, these methods are cheap ways to have longer battery life. I do not want to make my phone super thick with an extended battery. If I have multiple normal sized batteries then I am stuck with swapping them out everyday and carrying an extra battery around. Not to mention charging the extra battery. I either have to have a separate charger or have to charge one battery, then swap out the other battery and charge it in the phone. In theory it is cool to have this ability, but really it just creates much more work that I do not need. It is just easier to have a charger at my desk, at my home, and in my car so I do not have to worry about my phone dying. I realize some people do not have that ability to charge their device at work, but a lot of people do. Even if you do not have the ability at work, then you still do not need to worry about your phone dying in 8 hours... unless Justin Bieber tweeted something really cool and you need to tell your friends. Also, having a non removable battery means that it is a high quality battery that will have better performance than a removable battery.
I will end this review the same way that I started it; this is is best phone currently out on the market. It has the best hardware and the best software the is out. In 2 years this will be the only device that is current and up to date.
-latest android, always updated asap
-4.7 inch True HD IPS display
-Quad core Qualcomm snapdragon s 4 pro processor
-2 gb of ram
-Removable memory card/16 gb of memory
What would make it the perfect phone for me
-Portrait slider keyboard
- Software is the most important thing
- Hardware is secondary