Google launches new flagship smartphone: the £299 Nexus 5 with Android KitKat

Google's Nexus range of smartphones have always acted as showcases for the latest version of Android, and the Nexus 5 is no exception

Google has officially launched its latest flagship Android smartphone, the Nexus 5. The 5-inch handset will be the first device to run Android 4.4 KitKat, the latest version of Google’s mobile operating system.

(Click here to see what's new in version 4.4)

The Nexus 5 costs £295 for a 16GB SIM-free version (£339 for the 32GB) and features a fully HD 1920x1080 display, a 2.26GHz processor and 2GB of RAM. There’s Bluetooth 4.0 for connecting with various fitness gadgets and wireless charging (though you have to buy the charger separately).

As with previous handsets in the series the Nexus 5 is all about giving customers the ‘pure’ Android experience, so that means no additional UI tweaks (eg HTC’s Sense or Samsung’s TouchWiz) and hardware that’s more than capable of running everything smoothly.

To achieve this Google have continued their partnership with South Korean manufacturer LG for the actual hardware, and the Nexus 5 comes with essentially the same innards as the LG G2, and also has the capacity to shoot video at full 1080p resolution.

However, Google aren’t joining LG in placing their physical phone buttons on the back of the device and are instead keeping them on the side and top of the phone, as expected.

The Nexus 5 has a few obvious improvements over its predecessor, the Nexus 4, with the handset offering 4G functionality, something that was conspicuously missing before. However, as with the 4, the 5 again omits the opportunity to expand the onboard storage with a microSD card slot.

However, Google do say that they’ve improved the camera as compared to the 4. The Nexus 5 comes with an 8-megapixel lens on the back and 1.3-megapixels on the front, with Google chucking in extra OIS (optical image stabilization) to cut down on blurry photos. Finding out whether this is actually effective though will be a job for the reviewers.

The biggest feature of the Nexus 5 is undoubtedly Android 4.4 KitKat. This isn’t a total redesign in the mode of iOS 7, but the visual look has been sharpened and refreshed for a cleaner OS.

There’s also a far greater integration of Google services, with Google Now just a single swipe away from the home screen and Google Hangouts replacing the default texting app. Google also promises that there's a lot going on under the hood to improve performance on lower-specced phones with as little as 512MB of RAM.

Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Gadgets & Tech

    Recruitment Genius: Application Support Engineer - Software

    £18000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A small rapidly expanding IT So...

    Guru Careers: Software Developer / Web Developer

    £30 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: A Software / Web Developer (PHP / MYSQL) i...

    Guru Careers: Account Executive

    £18 - 20k + Benefits: Guru Careers: An Account Executive is needed to join one...

    Guru Careers: Software Developer / Software Engineer

    £35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: A Software Developer / Software Engineer i...

    Day In a Page

    Blundering Tony Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

    Blundering Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

    For Arabs – and for Britons who lost their loved ones in his shambolic war in Iraq – his appointment was an insult, says Robert Fisk
    Fifa corruption arrests: All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue

    Fifa corruption arrests

    All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue, says Ian Herbert
    Isis in Syria: The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of President Assad and militant fighters

    The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of Assad and Isis

    In Syrian Kurdish cantons along the Turkish border, the progressive aims of the 2011 uprising are being enacted despite the war. Patrick Cockburn returns to Amuda
    How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields: Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape the US

    How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields

    Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape to the US
    Stephen Mangan interview: From posh buffoon to pregnant dad, the actor has quite a range

    How Stephen Mangan got his range

    Posh buffoon, hapless writer, pregnant dad - Mangan is certainly a versatile actor
    The ZX Spectrum has been crowd-funded back into play - with some 21st-century tweaks

    The ZX Spectrum is back

    The ZX Spectrum was the original - and for some players, still the best. David Crookes meets the fans who've kept the games' flames lit
    Grace of Monaco film panned: even the screenwriter pours scorn on biopic starring Nicole Kidman

    Even the screenwriter pours scorn on Grace of Monaco biopic

    The critics had a field day after last year's premiere, but the savaging goes on
    Menstrual Hygiene Day: The strange ideas people used to believe about periods

    Menstrual Hygiene Day: The strange ideas people once had about periods

    If one was missed, vomiting blood was seen as a viable alternative
    The best work perks: From free travel cards to making dreams come true (really)

    The quirks of work perks

    From free travel cards to making dreams come true (really)
    Is bridge the latest twee pastime to get hip?

    Is bridge becoming hip?

    The number of young players has trebled in the past year. Gillian Orr discovers if this old game has new tricks
    Long author-lists on research papers are threatening the academic work system

    The rise of 'hyperauthorship'

    Now that academic papers are written by thousands (yes, thousands) of contributors, it's getting hard to tell workers from shirkers
    The rise of Lego Clubs: How toys are helping children struggling with social interaction to build better relationships

    The rise of Lego Clubs

    How toys are helping children struggling with social interaction to build better relationships
    5 best running glasses

    On your marks: 5 best running glasses

    Whether you’re pounding pavements, parks or hill passes, keep your eyes protected in all weathers
    Joe Root: 'Ben Stokes gives everything – he’s rubbing off on us all'

    'Ben Stokes gives everything – he’s rubbing off on us all'

    Joe Root says the England dressing room is a happy place again – and Stokes is the catalyst
    Raif Badawi: Wife pleads for fresh EU help as Saudi blogger's health worsens

    Please save my husband

    As the health of blogger Raif Badawi worsens in prison, his wife urges EU governments to put pressure on the Saudi Arabian royal family to allow her husband to join his family in Canada