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The best phone $350 can buy

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The Nexus 5 offers the best bang for your buck, with amazing specs and the latest OS for a very reasonable price.

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$99.99

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Critic reviews

8.4
28 reviews
  • Reception and call quality
    8.6
  • Display
    9.5
  • Battery life
    7.1
  • Camera
    7.5
  • Ease of use
    8.0
  • Design and form factor
    8.0
  • Portability (size / weight)
    8.2
  • Media support
    6.8
  • Durability
    7.7
  • Ecosystem (apps, accessories, etc.)
    9.0

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User reviews

9.0
134 reviews
9.0
Engadget Nov 5, 2013

A phone like the Nexus 5 would get our blessing even at a higher price, but the fact that you can buy it for as low as $350 makes it that much sweeter.

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8.0
CNET Nov 1, 2013

Strong performance, high-end specs, and an ultra-affordable price make the Google Nexus 5 not just the best unlocked phone on the market, but the best Nexus phone by far.

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8.0
AllThingsD Nov 5, 2013

Nexus 5 is the best Nexus phone I’ve tested. But the phone and its software are designed more to bolster Google features and global Android dominance than to wow sophisticated users.

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8.0
Ars Technica Nov 7, 2013

Price is what really sets the Nexus 5 apart—you're getting the same internals as every other flagship, but at half the cost. Couple that with minimalistic good looks, decent build quality, and the latest version of Android, and you've got a real winner.

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8.0
Wired Nov 7, 2013

The screen is gorgeous. The camera is flawed. The photo processing is fantastic. It’s loaded up with Google brains. And mostly, it does a great job of just disappearing like a good phone should.

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8.0
Computerworld Nov 13, 2013

The Nexus 5 may not have the best camera or the longest battery life on the market, but it provides an admirable overall user experience -- and when you consider its $349 off-contract price, it's easy to forgive its shortcomings and focus on its strengths.

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10
The Guardian Nov 11, 2013

ts 5in screen is great, sharp and clear, its camera is decent, and the uncluttered, bloat-free Android Kitkat experience is refreshing. It is also future proofed, and is ensured rapid software updates direct from Google, which will help keep it feeling fresh and up-to-date going forward –...

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9.0
TechHive Nov 5, 2013

Running the latest version of Android, the Nexus 5 really shows off the best aspects of Google's mobile OS. There are few reasons not to pick the Nexus 5 as your next Android phone.

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9.0
Pocket-Lint Nov 14, 2013

The Nexus 5 is a great choice for those looking for a clean Android experience and who want a great display and plenty of power for the money. There is, however, still plenty of merit in other flagship devices; the choice now, is just that little bit harder.

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9.0
SlashGear Nov 8, 2013

This isn’t the only smartphone that Android will be rolling with this upcoming season, but it’s arguably the best. The Nexus 4 found its way into more than one SlashGear writer’s pocket, and it’s a device that has stood the test of time since launch for many of the same reasons that the...

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9.0
TrustedReviews Nov 4, 2013

The Google Nexus 5 is the high-end Android phone bargain of the year. Aside from a slightly anaemic battery it offers everything phones costing £200 more do.

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9.0
IGN Nov 8, 2013

The Nexus 5 is in a league of its own. It may not have the longest battery life or fancy build materials, but it does have high-powered internals, a beautiful display, and, of course, a stock version of the fantastic Android 4.4 KitKat operating system—all for just $349 unlocked.

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8.0
The Telegraph Nov 4, 2013

The underlying impression is that with the Nexus 5 Google is producing yet another smartphone that proves a point ... At this price, that sort of innovation is easy to get excited about.

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8.0
The Verge Nov 4, 2013

I would love to be able to recommend this device wholeheartedly, but I can't do that until Google sorts out the issues with the Nexus 5's camera. ... When that day comes, the Nexus 5 will be a killer package I'll happily recommend. But that's not today.

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8.0
TechRadar Nov 12, 2013

It may not have the tremendous battery life of the LG G2, or the cameras you'd find in the iPhone 5S or Lumia 1020, or the build quality of the iPhone or HTC One, but you're not going to be sacrificing much with what you're paying for the device.

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8.0
Gizmag Nov 12, 2013

Anyone with more than a passing interest in Android really has no reason to pass up on the Nexus 5, except maybe for me. I must be one of the very rare Android users that comes up against the very few shortcomings that the Nexus 5 actually has, namely its lack of friendliness to Verizon subscribers...

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8.0
Digital Versus Dec 9, 2013

The camera and sound quality aren't the best, but they're nothing to gawk at, either. Our biggest complaint is the battery life, which frankly can't compete. This is definitely a phone for anyone who wants fun, convenience and high performance without breaking the bank.

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7.0
GSM Arena Nov 13, 2013

...at this stage none can match the Nexus 5 in terms of bang for your buck as long as the Play Store devices section is available in your country.

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9.0
Business Insider Nov 14, 2013

The Nexus 5 is the perfect device if you want to make sure you always have the best Google has to offer with Android. It might not be much to look at, but it's the best device you can own if you care about the experience and Google ecosystem above anything else.

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8.0
Digital Trends Nov 7, 2013

The Nexus 5 is a no-nonsense smartphone which shows off everything Android (and LG, to an extent) is capable of in a most convincing, but clinical, fashion. Just don’t let that put you off.

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8.0
IntoMobile Nov 13, 2013

With a great in-hand feel, and solid hardware through out, the Nexus 5 is a great device that Android purists will surely enjoy, but it's not perfect...The new tricks KitKat bring to the table are solid, but I'm not in love with the new homescreen layout, which makes Nova Launcher a staple for me...

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8.0
HotHardware Nov 18, 2013

In short, if you're looking for a solid, well-equipped and powerful Android phone, the Google Nexus 5 hits all the major selling points for the most part and does so with a highly polished version of Google's latest mobile OS.

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8.0
Photography Blog Dec 11, 2013

The main drawback for keen photographers is the lack of manual controls - this really is very much a point and shoot device - but the Google Nexus 5 usually delivers good enough results for daily shooting.

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7.0
MobileBurn Nov 18, 2013

The purpose of the Nexus 5 was to serve as a benchmark for other Android manufacturers, but this one is no benchmark.

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First Looks

product preview
Engadget Oct 31, 2013

In our hands-on with the device, we were incredibly impressed with the clarity and sharpness of the 1080p display. The edge-to-edge glass certainly gives the Nexus 5 an unquestionably premium feel, even with the sliver of bezel adorning the top and bottom.

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product preview
Engadget Feb 6, 2014

Is it any better than the other colors? Not really, but it all comes down to personal preference. The red version has the same smooth matte finish as the white model (in contrast to the black model, which has a soft-touch plastic feel).

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product preview
GigaOM Oct 31, 2013

For a phone with 5-inch display, the Nexus 5 is very light ... The display is brilliant: Very bright and colorful, easy to see from all angles. It’s definitely readable outdoors. Colors don’t appear over-saturated to my eye ... Regardless of that, the Nexus 5 shows promise.

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product preview
CNET Oct 31, 2013

Once again, the Nexus 5 brings to the fore some of the best of smartphone technology. Not only does it now have LTE (the absence of which from the last model was seen as a major oversight), it also has a powerful Snapdragon 800 processor, a 1080p screen, and the latest OS software.

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product preview
TechCrunch Oct 31, 2013

It feels like they took the Nexus 4, the Moto X, and the HTC One — all three devices of which were devices I really liked — and mashed them together, pulling in many of the best parts of each. If you’re already an Android fan or a Nexus 4 owner, you’ll like what you see here.

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product preview
Pocket-Lint Oct 31, 2013

It really feels like a truly high-end phone in the way that even the previous Nexus 4 didn’t, and Google has clearly spent a lot of time perfecting not just how it works, but crucially how it feels.

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product preview
PC World Australia Nov 1, 2013

The Nexus 5 weighs 130g and is 8.59mm thick. Interestingly, the power and volume buttons on the device are made from a ceramic material, rather than plastic.

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product preview
SlashGear Feb 6, 2014

What you've got instead of the original build is a bright bit of red on the orange side. This tone wraps around the sides and the back of the device as well as straight through to he ear-bound speaker.

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product preview
T3 Nov 1, 2013

From our short time spent with the Nexus 5 it appears as though LG has lost none of that knack, creating a seamless Google experience that feels fresh even if KitKat isn't the overhaul that Apple's iOS 7 might have been.

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product preview
TechRadar Nov 1, 2013

The Nexus 5, while a little later in the year compared to the other top-end handsets, seems to be a lot more bullet-proof in terms of being able to carry on chugging for a couple of years.

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product preview
Android Central Feb 5, 2014

Another burning (as in "well, what is it?!?!" and not "oh, my eyes!") question was whether the back case would be the matte plastic like the white Nexus 5, or the more stylish soft-touch black. It's the former. No soft-touch to be found here.

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product preview
The Next Web Nov 3, 2013

Based on the few hours we’ve had to play with the Nexus 5, it’s a solid-looking and flexible device that has the potential to help you get the information you want, make sure you arrive at your destination safely, and be a productivity workhorse.

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product preview
Android Community Feb 7, 2014

The red Nexus 5 actually looks a lot like the red bumper case available for the model. To that, if you really wanted this phone for some reason, but already purchased the black or white version, you could get the case and achieve the same effect.

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product preview
Stuff Oct 31, 2013

It’s without doubt the worst kept secret in technology, but Google has finally fessed up to the Nexus 5 handset, and revealed the five inch flagship will go on sale today. With a full HD 1920 x 1080 display and a 4.95in screen, it’s a really impressive bit of kit.

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10
ImTheStig ImTheStig

Had an great experience using this device and is defiantly my new daily drive. Having powerful top of the line is only half the story, what is also needed is the software to be optimised for it. Which is what Nexus line does best and the nexus 5 is not exception. Its fast responsive and...

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9.0
falleninsea falleninsea

I feel that the Nexus line is almost always the best way to go when getting an android phone. Google’s stock Android is just so much cleaner, easier to use and more intuitive than any one else's version of Android. Add onto that the regular updates that come out fast in comparison to any other...

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9.0
gheedsgreed gheedsgreed

The Nexus 5 is a great upgrade from last year's Nexus 4. The new plastic back design is very attractive and makes the phone surprisingly light, though a little slippery. The larger size takes a little getting used to if you are coming from a smaller phone, as it makes holding and using a screen a...

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10
OftHated OftHated

After about a week with this phone, I can say my switch from Verizon was worth it. I've been a lifelong (well, since I was 14--so about 13 years) Verizon customer, and have been through just about every worthwhile Android phone on Verizon since the OG Droid. But I finally got fed up with the lack...

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10
lucassou lucassou

very good phone, at this price we can't have better, a little bit sad for the batterie and the camera (easy blurry) but still a good phone

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10
llkats llkats

I love this phone. It has a beautiful screen, is fast as can be, feels great to hold and use, and the price is fantastic. So much <3.

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9.0
mrk mrk

I have a Nexus 4 and a Nexus 5. After installing KitKat on both you can really see the difference between the two phones. KitKat is smoother on the Nexus 5. The animations don't hesitate and are more fluid. The UX is different as well - no idea why - but the home screen on the Nexus 5 has...

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9.0
Lorenz67 Lorenz67

Battery life and auto focus are my only concerns and they're not serious. They're also both potentially addressable from the software side, if they are it becomes a 9.5.

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10
systemBuilder systemBuilder

Better than my existing iPhone 5 : (a) It's far less expensive and has more 32GB for less money, (b) The display is amazing, and (c) The iPhone often doesn't focus well indoors and in HDR mode the Nexus 5 takes better photos. I am new to Android but KitKat 4.4 is a speedy and simple OS vs. 6.1.3...

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9.0
JayRodriguez JayRodriguez

Best android i've encountered as of today. Switched to the LG G2 since I got it as a gift, and the battery life is amazing (on the G2), but the user interface in the Nexus is a winner.

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10
gcortes824 gcortes824

SUPER fast phone that runs on the very efficient Android 4.4 KitKat. I can have Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, Gmail, Chrome, and the Play Store all running in the background and the phone won't have any hiccups. The only downside is the camera, which isn't as stellar as other phones....

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How it stacks up

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