After months of rumor and speculation, Google finally confirmed the Nexus 6 release today in an announcement alongside the Nexus 9 and Android 5.0 Lollipop update. With a Nexus 6 release date still missing in action, we breakdown everything prospective buyers need to know ahead of the new Nexus smartphone release.
For several months, we saw Nexus 6 rumors go back and forth. We heard about Nexus 6 specs, we heard about the Nexus 6 launch date and we even heard about the Nexus 6 release date. Today, Google finally put those rumors to rest as it confirmed a new Nexus 6 smartphone from Motorola, a device that’s expected to challenge the likes of the Galaxy Note 4, iPhone 6 Plus and LG G3 later this year.
As expected, the Nexus 6 is a smartphone loaded with impressive specs. In addition to Android 5.0 Lollipop, the Nexus 6 comes stocked with a massive 6-inch Quad HD display, Snapdragon 805 quad-core 2.7GHz processor, dual front-facing speakers, fast charging capabilities, a 13MP camera with Optical Image Stabilization and HDR+, a massive battery, and more. It’s a device that consumers will surely be looking at in the buildup to Black Friday and the holidays.
Google also confirmed Nexus 6 release date details today though it did not reveal everything. In fact, the specific Nexus 6 release date remains out of reach at the moment, much to the dismay of consumers around the world. Unlike the Nexus 5 release, which took place almost immediately after launch, the Nexus 6 release date is still several weeks away.
With that in mind, we want to preview the Nexus 6 release and breakdown everything that we currently know about Google’s new Nexus release. This will detail the Nexus 6 release date itself, the Nexus 6 price, Nexus 6 pre-orders, and the places where the Nexus 6 will be sold. We’ll also touch on some of our own expectations regarding these Nexus 6 details.
Nexus 6 Release Date
The Nexus 6 release date, the specific release date, remains unknown at this point. While Google pegged the Nexus 9 release date for November 3rd, Google did not attach anything specific to the Nexus 6 release. Google confirmed the Nexus 6 release date for November without offering any further details. Nexus 6 release date rumors have pointed to an arrival in early November though a release date still hasn’t been nailed down.
Motorola has filled in a few of the blanks though. The Nexus 6’s manufacturer says that the Nexus 6 will “come to 28 countries across Europe, Asia-Pacific and North America starting later this year and as we head into Q1.” In other words, not everyone is going to get a Nexus 6 release date before the holidays and before the end of the year.
It’s not clear what countries will get left out of the initial Nexus 6 release party though it’s clear that the United States, one of the biggest smartphone markets in the world, will be among the first. Look for Google to confirm specific release date details once pre-orders start in late October. Those interested in staying up to date can do so through Motorola’s Nexus 6 sign up page.
Nexus 6 Pre-Orders
Speaking of Nexus 6 pre-orders, Google did announce a start date for early Nexus 6 orders. Nexus 6 pre-orders start on October 29th, or, just about two weeks after today’s announcement. The device will almost certainly go up for pre-order on the Google Play Store and it’s possible that carriers and retailer will take early reservations as well.
Nexus 6 Carriers (U.S.)
The Nexus 6 is going to be coming to a wide swath of carriers in the United States. Instead of a limited release like the Nexus 5 and Nexus 4, the Nexus 6 is coming to AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, U.S. Cellular, and Verizon in the United States. AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile come as no surprise though the emergence of U.S. Cellular and Verizon is a coup for buyers in the United States.
Verizon did not stock the Nexus 4 or Nexus 5 due in part to the horrible experience that came with the Samsung Galaxy Nexus. Verizon did offer last year’s Nexus 7 though that release was not without its troubles either.
It’s not clear if all five of these carriers will share a release date though with Black Friday and the holidays coming up, we expect Verizon and its fellow carriers to get the Nexus 6 out before the end of November.
T-Mobile says that it plans to release the Nexus 6 starting November 12th. AT&T hasn’t provided any release details, U.S. Cellular says November, and Sprint is sticking to Google’s line about “coming weeks.” We expect Nexus 6 release dates to cluster around one another and for all Nexus 6 release dates to emerge in November.
Nexus 6 Price
We still don’t have a Nexus 6 on-contract price point though a leak suggests that it could be as low as $50 on-contract at AT&T. That price hasn’t been confirmed though consumers should remain hopeful that that price sticks because the Nexus 6 is going to cost an arm and a leg off-contract.
Motorola today confirmed that the Nexus 6 will start at $650 off-contract. That price is for the 32GB device. The larger 64GB Nexus 6 should retail for $700 off-contract. That’s far more expensive than the Nexus 5, a device that will serve as the Nexus 6’s cheaper counterpart, and a device that currently slots in at the $350 to $400 off-contract price point.
Google will offer the Nexus 6 in two colors at the start, midnight blue and cloud white, and those prices will encompass both shades. It’s not clear if every carrier will get both colors though we do expect all five U.S. carriers to stock both.
Nexus 6: Where to Buy
According to Google, the Nexus 6 will be sold through the Google Play Store, through carrier locations and through at least one big name retailer.
The Google Play Store is an obvious retail choice for the Nexus 6 and it will join the Nexus 9 and Nexus 5 as Google’s flagship Nexus products. Google’s Play Store has, for the most part, been a dependable place to buy Nexus products though the horrors of the Nexus 4 release are probably still engrained in the minds of Android buyers around the world.
LG and Google simply did not anticipate Nexus 4 demand and the Nexus 4 was essentially sold out from November to February. Last year, LG and Google did not take pre-orders for the Nexus 5 and instead launched the phone shortly after its arrival. While we saw some initial stock issues, Google’s been able to keep Nexus 5 supply flowing throughout the year.
AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, U.S. Cellular, and Verizon will all sell the Nexus 6. We expect it to be available online and in retail stores so that consumers can go hands on with the Nexus 6 before buying it. While the big four offer tons of retail locations, U.S. Cellular’s retail locations are far more limited and those looking to buy on the nation’s fifth largest carrier might need to take a long drive to reach a store.
Of course, it looks like Best Buy will be selling the Nexus 6 as well. Best Buy typically only stocks AT&T, Sprint and Verizon smartphones so there’s a very good chance that the T-Mobile and U.S. Cellular Nexus 6 models will be far more limited upon release.