Nexus 6 long term review

Who keeps the same cellphone for more than 3 years these days? 

Who keeps the same cellphone for more than 3 years these days? 

My Motorola Nexus 6 Android cellphone arrived June 30th 2015 when my Google Project Fi invitation arrived.  I had been using a Nexus 5 cellphone prior on AT&T and then T-Mobile’s network, but in order to switch my cellular service to Project Fi I was required to purchase a new Nexus 6.

Motorola Nexus 6

I bought a Project Fi Nexus 6 (64 GB, Midnight Blue) $549 and that was my cellphone for nearly 4 years.  I added a plastic case and slipped a metal plate inside it to use with a magnetic mount kit.

Motorola Nexus 6 rear

A Project Fi Welcome Kit was also sent to me and I got a number of Android OS and security updates sent to it.  I noticed the battery life getting low about a year ago and some noticeable swelling of the battery pack.  The phone continued to work great other than the ever shortening battery life.  I think the original Motorola power block developed an issue and stopped supporting fast charges after a couple years. The battery pack on my Nexus 5 has also swelled in the years since it’s purchase and lost most of it’s capacity. The batteries on my Nexus 7 and Nexus 9 tablets still look and work great.

Motorola Nexus 6 swelling battery

I was considering using one of my tablets to replace it for main cellphone use since they can also make and take calls on Google Fi but when I saw a 50% off sale celebrating the birthday of Google Fi service I decided to purchase a new Google Pixel 3 to replace my Nexus 6.

 

Google Pixel 3

My new phone arrived today and activating it and moving over my apps and data couldn’t have been easier. Today was the last day I used my Nexus 6 as my cellphone and I hope my new Pixel 3 is as good as it was too me.

Pixel 3 and Nexus 6

Android 7 Nougat update initial impressions

Android 7 Nougat Update
Android 7 Nougat Update

I finally got the prompt to download the update to Android 7.0 Nougat on my Motorola Nexus 6 telephone.  This phone was launched in November of 2014 along with the release of Android 5 Lollipop and was discontinued about a year later in December of 2015.

It worked pretty well and in the time in between now and then, it was also updated to Android 6.0 Marshmallow.  That brought additional features and fixes.

Android 6 Marshmallow
Android 6 Marshmallow

Sometime last year Google started publishing monthly security updates for recent Android devices.  The Nexus devices are typically the first to get updates from Google as there’s less involvement from the cellphone carriers and phone manufacturers in approving the update, since the software on the phone is pretty much just Android without any carrier or manufacturer add ins.

Android Security Updates
Android Security Updates

You can check your Android device to see what version operating system and which security update you have under the About menu in Settings.

Android 7 Nougat details
Android 7 Nougat details

My Nexus 9 tablet got the 7.0 update a couple of weeks ago, and has since been updated to 7.1.1  It also was launched about 2 years ago using Android 5 Lollipop and has been used with Marshmallow during the time in between.

My Nexus 6 got the March 5 security update as well as the 7.0.0 update.

Android 7 Nougat
Android 7 Nougat

My initial impressions of Android 7.0 are that it has easier to read notifications and the ability to split the screen and have two apps running side by side is pretty cool, especially on tablets or cellphones with large screens.

Split screen in Android 7
Split screen in Android 7 Nougat

I haven’t noticed any slow down or issues with apps since upgrading.  Sadly my “old” phone and tablet are at the end of the line for Android System updates from Google.  I suppose two years and 2 major release upgrades are pretty good compared to other devices which never were updated or only got one.  I’ll continue to get security updates for about 1 more year.  When those stop I’ll probably be in the market for replacements.

Who uses the same cellphone for 3-4 years?  Apparently I will but it’s only because Google has been providing updates for the Nexus devices.  If this is still the case I’ll probably buy my replacement from them.  I’m also happy with Google’s Project Fi and would need a cellphone that’s supported.

Sonic Drive In Mobile Pay App Revisited

I used the Sonic Drive In Mobile Pay app to pay for my breakfast this morning, after using it last almost a year ago.  I noticed some new touch screen displays for ordering and I thought it would be nice to record a video of them and ordering using the application.

Sonic Mobile Pay Balance
Sonic Mobile Pay Balance

I had some funds left as a balance on the app from my prior uses, and it was more than enough for a breakfast burrito.  I like the Super Sonic Breakfast Burrito, and I love tater tots.

Sonic Mobile Pay Order
Sonic Mobile Pay Order

It worked great and I’m going to use the Reload function in the app before I make my next visit to Sonic for tater tots or a burger.

Sonic Mobile Pay Reload
Sonic Mobile Pay Reload

You can read the post I made the first time I tried using the Sonic Drive In Mobile Pay app here, and then the second time I used it is described in this blog post.  I recommend this app for those who frequently visit a Sonic location that supports Mobile Pay.  I think the new style displays will work better than the old ones with keypads that were exposed to the elements.