Back in December 2011, I was very excited about the Galaxy Nexus just like everyone else. Many of the others that shared my excitement are past the Nexus and on to the next big thing now.
Not me, I still love my Galaxy Nexus.
Many awesome phones have popped up since I bought my Galaxy Nexus, but for once in my life, I am content.
I have been covering smart phones for almost 10 years now and have owned literally 100s of them. During the time I owned/ran Mobilitysite, I changed phones more often than I changed socks. For me to keep the same phone in my pocket for the larger part of the past 6 months is an accomplishment for me.
Part of this is financial, but the main reason is that the Galaxy Nexus does everything I need a phone to do for me and nothing has been released that makes my Nexus seem old. The HTC One series tempted me, but I have remained faithful. I still own the HTC Titan, the iPhone 4S, the Nokia Lumia 800, and several other older phones that I might use for a day or two while testing something, but 99% of the time, the Galaxy Nexus is in my left pocket.
What do I like about the Galaxy Nexus?
Everything? Close, but it’s not perfect.
- I love the size of the Galaxy Nexus. The 4.65″ screen is perfect size for me. With custom ROMs, I am able to scale the UI to a perfect viewing size where I can see much more information on the screen that stock. The physical dimensions are perfect for my hands and I can do 90% of the tasks I need to do fast with one hand.
- Custom ROMs! The Galaxy Nexus is a popular phone and with that comes plenty of high quality custom ROMs. With these ROMs, I don’t have to worry about update nightmares from Verizon. Other than battery life, I don’t share the same issues others complain about. I credit this to custom ROMs. My battery life isn’t horrible as I can normally make it from 7AM to 9PM on a single charge. This is all I need since I rarely find myself in a situation where I need longer battery life. As for the microphone issues Adam has had, I have never had this problem. I have never had a random reboot either. I know custom ROMs are not exclusive to the Galaxy Nexus, but they are out there and they take care of issues that Verizon can’t or haven’t yet.
- Dual Core 1.2 GHz Processor. Sure, there are better, faster processors out now but I’ve not had any issues with performance. Everything I run on my Galaxy Nexus runs well. Games are smooth, Chrome is lightning fast, and all the other apps run without a hitch. The phone is as fast as it was when I 1st got it. With minimal maintenance, it runs fine. There is no reason to run task managers and other apps to control apps.
- The camera is quite good considering it’s only 5 megapixel. There are some really great cameras in more recent phones that I have tested, but for me, the camera on the Galaxy Nexus is more than sufficient. When I want to replace a standalone camera, I’ll pay more attention to better camera phones.
- Android 4 is the best OS currently on the market. I have a little bit of a crush on Windows Phone, but I still feel Android is better overall. There’s nothing wrong with iOS at all, but it’s tired and played out like Windows Mobile was. My work phone is an older Android device running 2.3 and while I used 2.3 devices when they were current, I never really realized how much more mature Android 4 was until I started using the 2.3 phone more often.
To be fair, custom ROMs help make my experience better than stock. Perhaps if I was running stock, I might not feel the same about my Galaxy Nexus. The core reason I love about the phone would remain though. The size, the camera, and the processor wouldn’t change but the overall experience might. Maybe I should change the title to, “6 Months Later, I Still Love My Modded Galaxy Nexus“.
What don’t I like?
- Well, for starters, I dislike the way Verizon has handled the Galaxy Nexus experience. Even though I don’t care about updates since I am using custom ROMs, I am very disappointed that Verizon has taken so long to come out with an update. I am even more disappointed that Google has allowed this to happen. I don’t like how the Nexus tag in the title is meaningless now. Like Adam, I purchased the Galaxy Nexus with the expectations that Google would remain involved with keeping it updated with the latest and greatest. The simple fact is that Google is letting us down with the Verizon Gnex and other Nexus models on other carriers. I will definitely think twice with my assumptions that Google cares in the future.
- Battery Life. With all the tweaks that the custom ROM has built-in and I control by turning off LTE and other things, my Galaxy Nexus only gets a solid day of use. That’s plenty for me, but I would be lying if I said I wouldn’t like better life for those heavy usage days.
For me, the positives outweigh the negatives.
I can honestly see the Galaxy Nexus in my left front pocket until Verizon lands a decent Windows Phone and even then, I am not sure. My desire for a Verizon Windows Phone is dying out fast and even the Nokia Lumia 800 couldn’t excite me.
What Galaxy Nexus Custom ROM am I using?
I am still using Gummy Nexus ROM. I am using an older version (4.0.3) but it’s still doing well for me and I haven’t had the time to update to the latest. I am quite satisfied with this ROM but other ROMs I have tried with my Galaxy Nexus were awesome too.
I love my Galaxy Nexus!