*** UPDATE *** I have very much changed my opinion on this device. Please see here.
The Nexus 6, I have determined, is chintzy. I thought it was me, at first, but after having returned several units that had various problems (which has earned me the ire of Amazon, but that’s another story), I think it’s not me, it’s the phone.
One unit had discolored banding problems on the display. Two others got uncomfortably warm during normal use, and too damned hot when doing anything like watching video or playing a game, such that the glass of the display was almost painful to touch. A great deal of googling showed that this seemed to be an issue relatively few complained of, so I thought perhaps I had gotten a lot of first-batch units that had since been improved. Or perhaps the Android 5.1 update, not available when I tried the Nexi, addressed the issue. Or perhaps it was an issue with the AT&T-specific variant. Or perhaps it was just the blue ones.
So I gave it one last shot with a new-batch, unlocked, 5.1-running, white Nexus 6. And?
And it just gets too goddamned hot.
Plus, every unit had something somewhat odd about its vibration, each one had its own sound and quirks. Plus, they all hummed when charging (although the latest one hummed from the AC adapter, not the phone itself).
And the screen’s glass isn’t all that smooth, a little too much friction.
And the battery is not very good.
Neither is the camera.
But it’s fast and runs stock Lollipop! And it’s really big! Which I really like!
But still. I think despite the place they hold among Android nerds as the big-ass pure-Google beast-phablet, they’re just not made very well. Whatever decisions Motorola made to keep the thing affordable to manufacture, they cheaped out. LG did amazing work with the Nexus 5 in 2013, with a phone that was a joy to use despite its lame camera and battery. Motorola really just made a big stock-Android phone, but nothing to hang their hat on.
It’s a damn shame. I was ready to have quite an affection for the Nexus 6. I tried extremely hard to make that relationship work, to the detriment of others. I am finding I now feel closer to my Galaxy Note 4 after all.
Update, Next Day: Playing some more with it the next day, it still gets warm but it seems not as much. Perhaps this had something to do with it being its “first day” and running lots of setup processes? I obviously don’t know. And even the battery life and camera seem improved, and that may be due to the 5.1 update (which I thought I was getting on the Note last night, but alas, it was a small .0.1 update). I can certainly tell that the Nexus 6 is extremely fast now, with none of the UI lag that I sometimes get on the Note.
This may not be over. Perhaps it actually has burned me for the last time.