I thought the Nexus 6 was too big, I was wrong

In this line of work you see a lot of tech: phones of all sizes, tablets from the major vendors, and people you barely know seek you out to get your opinion on whatever is new, or to show off whatever they’re packing. Most of the time it’s pretty cool. Sometimes it can be creepy. At the end of the day, the positives generally outweigh the negatives, which makes it all worth while.

I’ve been interested in cutting edge tech since I was in high school – maybe even before.  I’ve seen the evolution from huge “mobile phones” to small and svelte “cellular phones”, and I’ve seen that trend reverse as phones have gotten bigger year after year. During this time I’ve owned a smartphone and a tablet. Each has had their own separate and distinct purposes. Each has had their own drawbacks, too.

I thought four or five inches was the ideal size for a smartphone. I thought the Nexus 6 and other phablets were simply too big. I was wrong. Here’s why.

My Old Routine

nexus 5In the morning my phone wakes me up. It’s on the Qi wireless charger across the room. After I pick up my phone, I drop off my tablet (a Nexus 7) so it will be ready for me later that day (more on that in a bit). I check my email, check my schedule, reply to comments, then check the “news” (via social media, of course). From there it’s breakfast and off to the day job, using Waze on my smartphone as a guide, which notifies me of any trouble spots on my painfully short commute.

Throughout the day I use my phone exclusively. It’s always by my side.

If my schedule has me busy with errands, meetings, politics, or who knows what else before returning home, again it’s my phone that sees me through.

Until recently that phone has been an LG-made Nexus 5. It’s served me well in the year or so that I’ve been toting it.

Once I’m settled in at home I swap my Nexus 5 for my Nexus 7, and spend the evening casting an episode or two of whatever series I’m enjoying to my Chromecast with my family. After that it’s time for bed with my tablet in tow. It’s there that I get in some light reading and catch up on the day’s YouTube before settling in for the night.

My New Routine

nexus 6All that changed when I got my Nexus 6.

I was hesitant to buy it because of its size. I’ve never been one for phablets. I’ve had friends and co-workers who are all to happy to let me hold and use their Note 3 or Note 4. I’ve even gone hands-on with the ZTE ZMAX for a while. My thoughts kept returning to the unwavering opinion that phablets are simply too big for me.

With my new phone, my routine is much the same as it was before, but instead of my phone being across the room on my Qi charger, it’s by my bedside on its rapid charger. I no longer drop a tablet off to be charged (more on that in a bit, too), instead I dive right into my routine: email, calendar, comments, and news followed by breakfast, Waze, and my day job. After work, my phone (I guess I really should call it a “phablet”, shouldn’t I?) stays right there with me if I have any meetings to attend.

Once I get home, I keep my Nexus 6 with me instead of swapping it for my Nexus 7. I cast TV episodes to my Chromecast with my phablet rather than my tablet. When I head to bed, I read on my Nexus 6, and catch up with my YouTube subscriptions there as well.

I haven’t turned my Nexus 7 on in over two weeks!

I’m a Convert

Nexus 6 vs Nexus 4The other day my son handed his Nexus 4 to me. “Dad, I can’t get on the WiFi.” We don’t share our WiFi credentials with anyone (not even our own kids). As I took his phone into my hands to input the password I couldn’t help but be taken aback with just how small it it. My fingers were cramped on the tiny keys. The space on the screen seemed so limited. “How can you work with this?!”, I thought.

Then it occurred to me: I’d used that very phone not long ago. It’s not that much smaller than the Nexus 5 that I’d been using ever so recently. What happened to me? Am I getting old? Do I have to have the “Readers’ Digest”, large-print edition of a phone?

No, that wasn’t it. Then I remembered my tablet – the one I hadn’t picked up in weeks. Something clicked. This was what my phablet-using friends were trying to tell me. A 6-inch phablet is big, you’ll get no argument from me there, but it’s not too big. If fact, it’s ideally sized. It’s just small enough to fit in a shirt pocket, but big enough to use in every manner that I’d previously used my Nexus 7 for. In all honesty, my Nexus 6 has replaced my Nexus 7.

In the beginning I thought the Nexus 6 was simply too big to be used as an everyday phone. After using it exclusively for a couple weeks, I’m convinced that I was wrong. Not only that, I doubt I’ll ever go back.

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About The Author
Joe Levi
Joe graduated from Weber State University with two degrees in Information Systems and Technologies. He has carried mobile devices with him for more than a decade, including Apple's Newton, Microsoft's Handheld and Palm Sized PCs, and is Pocketnow's "Android Guy". By day you'll find Joe coding web pages, tweaking for SEO, and leveraging social media to spread the word. By night you'll probably find him writing technology and "prepping" articles, as well as shooting video. Read more about Joe Levi here.