I Pulled Out a Nexus 6 Today and Oh My

Nexus 6 vs. Pixel 5

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The Nexus 6, a phone we typically only refer to at this point as “the whale” aka Shamu, is probably one of the less popular Google phones I can recall. The phone was so massive in size that it fully lived up to its codename and likely pushed away a good portion of former Nexus owners who had previously only lived within Google’s phone ecosystem. It wasn’t a phone built for everyone, that’s for sure.

Today, randomly, I was shuffling through a drawer of old phones I have and stumbled back upon it. Picking it up brought back memories of the difficult time that was being a Nexus 6 owner. This phone is so stupidly large. It really is remarkable how wild Google went with this thing, but that also got me thinking about how far we’ve come once I laid it down next to my Pixel 5.

Look at these two next to each other. It’s silly, right? It gets sillier if we recap some specs.

Nexus 6 vs. Pixel 5

The Nexus 6, for those who forgot, was released in 2014 with a 5.96″ QHD AMOLED display, 3220mAh battery, a single 13MP camera with OIS, 2MP front camera, stereo front speakers, 3GB RAM, up to 64GB storage, a Snapdragon 805 chipset, and a body that was 83mm wide. Obviously, some of those specs are what we find in low-end phones today, but they were absolutely top tier at the time of release.

Where this gets wild, though, is when you look at the Pixel 5. The Pixel 5 has the same size display at 6-inches, a much bigger battery (4000mAh), and two rear cameras in a body that is 15mm shorter and 13mm skinnier. The difference, of course, is that we’ve switched from 16:9 displays to 19.5:9, making them less wide and easier to hold, bezels have continued to shrink, and all of the components have probably become a lot smaller. But man, again, look at these two side-by-side!

Another good example of how far we’ve come is the new Galaxy S21 Ultra. That phone has a 6.8″ display, huge 5000mAh battery, advanced quad camera system, QHD display with 120Hz refresh rate, stereo speakers, and so much more. It’s slightly taller than the Nexus 6 and still a good 7mm skinnier. You really could do this comparison with almost any modern phone and will be blown away by the advancements.

The Nexus 6 fit its codename because it actually was a whale, yet I’m sitting here with a Pixel 5 that is arguably small compared to the rest of the industry. The Pixel 5 actually¬†feels small in the hand with the same exact size display as the whale. What a journey this has been.



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