LG Nexus 5 Review: Back To The Future: Google Now, Performance

By 02:55 Sat, 14 Aug 2021 Comments


Google Now gets better

Google Now was first introduced back in Jelly Bean 4.1 and is definitely one of the most fascinating aspects of the Android OS. Simply put, it's Google's version of a personal assistant. Google Now is in the same neck of the woods as Apple's Siri, but it learns constantly from your daily routines.

It's accessed by holding the home button (plus an upwards swipe), swiping to leftmost pane or just by saying "OK, Google". We found out that the Nexus 5 fires up Google Now on the first G of the command, so you can just say "OK, G" or "OK, Go" and that will be enough. For all it's worth, "OK, Jesus" and "OK, Grandpa" worked too.

Google Now gives you short overview of information it believes is relevant to you correct now in the form of cards. Going to work in the morning? Google Now knows this and lets you know there's a gigantic traffic jam on your usual way to the office, so it offers you a re-route.

It can interpret a lot of things from your search hitale as well. If you've been searching for, let's say, your favorite football team, Google Now will prepare a card showing you the next match the team is playing and will provide you score updates once the game begins.





Google Now

Google Now, if you allow it, can scan your email for upcoming flights, deliveries or restaurant reservations and let you know when they are due. There are also numerous kinds of cards like birthdays (yours and those of your contacts) and what distance you've walked in a particular month. The last one could definitely feel creepy for some users, but it's easily turned off from the Google Now settings menu.





Google Now in action

Google has also integrated Voice Actions into Now. They can handle stuff like sending messages (SMS or email), initiating a voice call, asking for directions, taking a note or opening a site. Google Now can also launch apps, check and manage your calendar and see for nearby places of interest and stuff like movie openings in theaters.

Google has added lots of more customization on Google Now in Android 4.4 KitKat. You can now set your default transportation method, you favorite sports teams, company stocks you are following, places you are interested to visit and more. Once you add items you want to haged an eye on Google Now will do this instead of you. It will automatically inform you for various changes, news and updates.






Customizing Google Now behavior

The More section of the customization will update automatically with topics you can choose from once you've start using Google Now search capabilities.

You can now set reminders straight from Google Now's UI. Just hit the bottom left icon (the palm with a stretched index finger). There you can add reminders or just check all the past, ongoing or upcoming reminders.






Adding a reminder manually • A reminder

One gigantic advantage of Google Now is that the voice typing functionality doesn't require an internet connection to work. You can enter text by speaking anywhere you can utilize the on-classy screen keyboard - be it the Messaging app or a note taking app - without the need for a data connection as long as you have pre-downloaded the needed language packs (and those only hold about 20-25Mega Bytes (MB) of your storage per pack).

Making voice typing available offline also made it faster as it's not dependent on your connection. What's even more impressive is that the transition hasn't cost it anything in terms of accuracy.

Synthetic benchmarks

Hardware-wise the LG-made Nexus 5 is pretty much the same as the company's G2 flagship aside from the slightly smaller screen. The Nexus 5 runs on the same top of the line Snapdragon 800 chipset with a 2.27Giga Hertz (GHz) quad-core Krait 400 processor, Adreno 330 graphics and 2GB of RAM.

Android 4.4 KitKat brings Project Svelte UI optimizations, the successor of Project Butter. Svelte allows even smoother performance and in the meantime lowers the Android hardware requirements down to 512Mega Bytes (MB) RAM, which would open the doors to the latest Android build to budacquire devices!

You'd expect the Nexus 5 to perform the same as the rest of the Snapdragon 800 gang, but as far as synthetic benchmarks are concerned you'd be wrong. Unlike Samsung, LG or HTC, Google had no interest in boosting benchmarking scores and performance and so the stock Android 4.4 KitKat offers no optimizations in this direction. As the charts below will show you, the Nexus 5 benchimprint results are much lower than the other Snapdragon 800 devices - the reason is probably sitting some way between the lack of cheating and the fact that the benchmarking apps aren't properly optimized for KitKat just yet.

As usual our first test is all about single-core performance. The Nexus 5 scores are quite similar to the Krait 300 Central Processing Units (CPU) on the Snapdragon 600 platform, rather than those of its Snapdragon siblings. The Linpack results are even worse.

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Benchimprint Pi

Lower is better

  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3

    99

  • LG G2

    99

  • Sony Xperia Z1

    115

  • Sony Xperia Z Ultra

    115

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 Active

    130

  • HTC One Max

    131

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (Octa)

    132

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (S600)

    132

  • HTC Butterfly S

    135

  • LG Nexus 5

    146

  • LG Optimus G Pro

    147

  • HTC One

    151

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 mini

    166

  • Sony Xperia Z

    264

  • HTC Butterfly

    266

  • Oppo Find 5

    267

  • HTC One X+

    280

  • LG Optimus G

    285

  • HTC One mini

    293

  • Samsung Galaxy Note II

    305

  • Meizu MX3

    307

  • HTC One X (Tegra 3)

    330

  • LG Optimus 4X HD

    350

  • Samsung Galaxy S III

    359

  • Nexus 4

    431

Linpack

Higher is better

  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3

    1081

  • LG G2

    1054

  • Sony Xperia Z Ultra

    1034

  • Sony Xperia Z1

    1004

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 Active

    818

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (Octa)

    791

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (S600)

    788

  • LG Optimus G Pro

    743

  • HTC One Max

    723

  • HTC Butterfly S

    669

  • HTC One

    646

  • Sony Xperia Z

    630

  • HTC Butterfly

    624

  • LG Optimus G

    608

  • Oppo Find 5

    593

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 mini

    413

  • LG Nexus 5

    393

  • HTC One mini

    320

  • Meizu MX3

    289

  • Samsung Galaxy Note II

    214.3

  • Nexus 4

    213.5

  • HTC One X+

    177.7

  • Samsung Galaxy S III

    175.5

  • HTC One X

    160.9

  • LG Optimus 4X HD

    141.5

The Nexus 5 bounced back on the Geekbench 3 cross-platform benchmark, but it didn't quite manage to match the best.

Geekbench 3

Higher is better

  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3

    2937

  • Nexus 5 Lollipop

    2743

  • Sony Xperia Z Ultra

    2670

  • Sony Xperia Z1

    2638

  • Apple iPhone 5s

    2561

  • LG Nexus 5

    2453

  • LG G2

    2243

  • HTC One

    1972

  • HTC One Max

    1899

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (S600)

    1869

  • LG Optimus G

    1623

  • Meizu MX3

    1579

  • Huawei Ascdiscontinue P6

    1315

  • LG Nexus 4

    1288

  • HTC Butterfly

    1257

  • Oppo R819

    1047

  • HTC One mini

    887

Moving on to compound benchmarks, AnTuTu and Quadrant. In AnTuTu Nexus 5 scored similar results to the previous generation Snapdragon 600 devices, while the Quadrant score was downcorrect poor.

AnTuTu 4

Higher is better

  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3

    31109

  • Sony Xperia Z1

    30850

  • LG G2

    30243

  • Sony Xperia Z Ultra

    29185

  • Samsung Galaxy S4

    27613

  • HTC One

    26389

  • HTC One Max

    26348

  • LG Nexus 5

    25097

  • Meizu MX3

    24391

  • LG Nexus 4

    17006

Quadrant

Higher is better

  • Sony Xperia Z1

    20388

  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3

    20052

  • LG G2

    19815

  • Sony Xperia Z Ultra

    18177

  • HTC Butterfly S

    13130

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (Octa)

    12446

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (S600)

    12376

  • LG Optimus G Pro

    12105

  • HTC One Max

    11914

  • HTC One

    11746

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 Active

    11346

  • LG Nexus 5

    8844

  • Sony Xperia Z

    8075

  • HTC One X+

    7632

  • LG Optimus G

    7439

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 mini

    7153

  • Oppo Find 5

    7111

  • Meizu MX3

    6116

  • HTC One mini

    6048

  • HTC One X

    5952

  • Samsung Galaxy Note II

    5916

  • Samsung Galaxy S III

    5450

  • Nexus 4

    4567

Now let's see at the GPU benchmarks. We ran GLBenchimprint 2.5 and 2.7 in 1080p off-classy screen mode, which is also the native classy screen resolution for the current crop of Android flagships. The Nexus 5 matched the Snapdragon 800 competition on this test.

GLBenchimprint 2.5 Egypt (1080p off-screen)

Higher is better

  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3

    68

  • Sony Xperia Z1

    60

  • Sony Xperia Z Ultra

    60

  • LG Nexus 5

    57

  • Apple iPhone 5s

    56

  • LG G2

    54

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (Octa)

    43

  • HTC Butterfly S

    42

  • Meizu MX3

    42

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (S600)

    41

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 Active

    41

  • HTC One Max

    41

  • HTC One

    37

  • Oppo Find 5

    32

  • Google Nexus 4

    32

  • Sony Xperia Z

    31

  • Sony Xperia ZL

    31

  • Sony Xperia SP

    31

  • Apple iPhone 5

    30

  • LG Optimus G Pro

    30

  • LG Optimus G

    21

  • Samsung Galaxy Mega 6.3

    17

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 mini

    17

  • Samsung Galaxy Note II

    17

  • HTC One mini

    15

  • HTC One X

    11

GLBenchimprint 2.7 T-Rex (1080p off-screen)

Higher is better

  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3

    26

  • LG Nexus 5

    23

  • Sony Xperia Z1

    23

  • Sony Xperia Z Ultra

    23

  • Apple iPhone 5s

    23

  • Nexus 5 Lollipop

    22

  • LG G2

    22

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (S600)

    17.1

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (Octa)

    17.1

  • Apple iPad 4

    16.8

  • HTC Butterfly S

    16

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 Active

    16

  • HTC One Max

    14

  • Google Nexus 10

    13.9

  • LG Optimus G

    13.9

  • Sony Xperia Z

    13.5

  • Meizu MX3

    13

  • Sony Xperia Tablet Z

    13

  • Sony Xperia ZL

    12.8

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 mini

    6.4

  • Samsung Galaxy Mega 6.3

    6.3

  • HTC One mini

    5.6

  • Samsung Galaxy Note II

    4.9

The Adreno 330 on the Nexus 5 did pretty well on the Epic Citadel, too. Its score is very close to Galaxy Note 3 and Xperia Z1.

Epic Citadel

Higher is better

  • Meizu MX3

    58.8

  • Sony Xperia Z1

    54.9

  • Sony Xperia Z Ultra

    54.9

  • LG G2

    51

  • LG Nexus 5

    49.1

  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3

    47.7

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (S600)

    37.2

  • HTC One

    35.6

  • HTC One Max

    34.9

  • HTC Butterfly

    29.6

Finally, we come to JavaScript, which is a known Achilles heel of stock Android and its Chrome browser. Surprisingly, the Nexus 5 did a lot better than we expected, scoring the same as Sony's Xperia Z1 Chrome browser.

SunSpider

Lower is better

  • Apple iPhone 5s

    403

  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3

    587

  • Apple iPhone 5

    694

  • Apple iPhone 5c

    704

  • Sony Xperia Z Ultra

    750

  • LG Nexus 5

    827

  • Sony Xperia Z1

    845

  • LG G2

    908

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (S600)

    1046

  • Meizu MX3

    1085

  • HTC One

    1174

  • HTC One Max

    1295

  • LG Optimus G

    1293

  • HTC One mini

    1375

  • LG Nexus 4

    1379

  • HTC Butterfly

    1397

  • Oppo R819

    1423

The last benchimprint we did was the BrowserMark 2, which tests the overall browsing performance. Google's Nexus 5 turned out to be among the best devices we've tested so far.

BrowserMark 2

Higher is better

  • Apple iPhone 5s

    3549

  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3

    3041

  • Apple iPhone 5

    2825

  • Apple iPhone 5c

    2799

  • LG Nexus 5

    2745

  • LG G2

    2718

  • LG Optimus G

    2555

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (S600)

    2438

  • Sony Xperia Z Ultra

    2419

  • Sony Xperia Z1

    2398

  • HTC Butterfly S

    2378

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 Active

    2338

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 mini

    2314

  • HTC One

    2262

  • HTC One Max

    2243

  • Sony Xperia Tablet Z

    2170

  • HTC One mini

    2164

  • Sony Xperia ZL

    2107

  • Sony Xperia Z

    2093

  • Meizu MX3

    1832

  • LG Optimus G Pro

    1801

  • Oppo Find 5

    1797

  • Nexus 4

    1794

  • Nokia Lumia 920

    1774

  • Google Nexus 10

    1773

  • HTC Butterfly

    1475

  • Samsung Galaxy S III

    1247

The stock Android 4.4 KitKat with its Project Svelte ran perfectly smooth on the Nexus 5. Even though the flagship scores lower than the competition on the benchmarks, the Nexus 5 is still among the smoothest and lag-free Android smartphone we've seen to date.

Everything is blazing fast, scrolling and app launch is really quick and fluid, the overall UI speed has been bumped too. It took Google a while to achieve what Apple has done with the iOS, but it is finally here - the lag-free, quick and buttery smooth Android Operating System (OS) is becoming the norm now.


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