Camera and Battery Life
The Nexus 6 features a 13 megapixel camera with an f2.0 lens. The camera also has Optical Image Stabilization and HDR+ to help you capture great pictures in various lighting conditions. For video, the Nexus 6 has up to a UHD 4K video mode that can record at 30fps.
Shooting modes on the Nexus 6 include Photo Sphere, Panorama, Lens Blur, Camera, and Video. With Photo Sphere, you can take a series of shots following the guided pattern and the camera will stitch them together. We had mixed results when testing this feature. Often, the seams were overlapped between photos resulting in a final image that was less than ideal. Still, it’s a neat feature in concept.
Lens Blur lets you blur the background of an image to create greater focus on your subject. This feature also lets you change the focus and adjust the blur after you’ve taken your photo. Results were also mixed when using this feature. Some images kept the correct focus better than others.
During our time with the Nexus 6, we were very impressed at the responsiveness of the camera and its quick focusing capabilities. Our test shots came out clear and crisp, as you can see from the sample shots below:
The Nexus 6 has a fixed 3220mAh battery with Qi wireless charging capabilities as well as Turbo Charge capabilities that can give you up to an additional 6 hours of life with a 15 minute charge. Google claims the Standby time with the Ambient Display on is up to 250 hours or up to 330 hours with the Ambient Display off. Internet use time is up to 9.5 hours via Wi-Fi and up to 10 hours via LTE. Talk time is up to 24 hours.
In real-world testing, the Nexus 6's battery lasted for a few days on standby with little battery consumption. Even during heavy-use days of checking email, browsing the web, placing phone calls, and taking pictures, the Nexus 6's battery was able to make it through an entire day. Of course, battery life will vary depending on how the phone is used.
Although the Nexus 6 already has a pretty beefy battery and quick charge capabilities, Android 5.0 makes things a little sweeter by offering a battery saving feature that can extend usage time by up to 90 minutes. In the battery settings menu, you can view the estimated time left on the phone before you’ll need to find a charger. When you plug in the smartphone to charge, the battery settings menu will display the estimated time left to fully charge.
In an attempt to quantitatively measure the Nexus 6's battery life in a controlled benchmark environment, we ran the latest version of the AnTuTu Battery Test. For this test, we set the Nexus 6's display to 50% brightness, which is still plenty bright and easy on the eyes. The Nexus 6 scored 5405, which is gives it second place in our chart after the Galaxy Note 4.
We also ran our own custom Web browsing test where we set up a webpage with a mix of graphics, media, and text. The page automatically refreshes every few minutes. This is a simple baseline test that measures up time while browsing the web. For this test, we set the Nexus 6's display to 50% brightness and connected to the web via Wi-Fi. In this test, the Nexus 6 lasted for 9 hours and 38 minutes, which supports Google’s Internet use claims.