Our Google Nexus 6 battery life test is complete, phablet lags behind the Note 4


When it comes to battery life, the story of the modern Nexus line is a fairly sad one – the Nexus 5, for example, managed just 4 hours and 50 minutes on our custom battery test, which is pretty underwhelming for a device at the flagship level. For the most part, we had the comparatively small, 2,300 mAh cell to blame for that, though many of us were willing to let this particular issue with the N5 slide simply because we were still getting a killer deal (it retailed for $349, after all!).

Things changed with the Nexus 6, however – Google's first phablet not only has enough space to fit a massive, 3,220 mAh cell, but it's also priced at $649. So it obviously has to deliver, and deliver on battery life, too, and despite its power-hungry Quad HD display. Thankfully, as it turns out, it absolutely does – this is the first Nexus device to achieve an excellent battery life on our custom test, or, all told – 7 hours and 53 minutes. Unfortunately, while this is a pretty great score overall, it does fall behind other recent QHD juggernauts, like the Galaxy Note 4 and the DROID Turbo, both of which fared better (8 hours 43 minutes and 10 hours 42 minutes, respectively).

So how do we test? We run a custom script that replicates the average person's usage in real life. The final time figure you get is indicative of the total time the average person can expect to spend using the device if he does not put it down to rest before it dies. So, obviously, an 8 hour score doesn't mean you can play a graphics-intensive game for 8 hours straight.

Last, but not least, when it comes to charging from zero to full, the Nexus 6 is among the quickest devices on the market, with a measured score of just 98 minutes – identical to what the Note 4 achieved, at 95 minutes, and pretty much on par with this category's champion, the Oppo Find 7/7A (if you account for the difference in capacity).

See for yourself.


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Nexus 6
  • Display 6.0" 1440 x 2560 pixels
  • Camera 13 MP / 2 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 805, Quad-core, 2700 MHz
  • Storage 64 GB
  • Battery 3220 mAh(24h talk time)

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40 Comments

6. rd_nest

Posts: 1656; Member since: Jun 06, 2010

@PA, your battery tests are useless if not done at consistent settings. I have been asking tons of times at what luminance/Nits do you run your scripts? N6 and Turbo has very dim display, so you have to take into account of that. If you want to be taken seriously, do it like Anandtech where they mention they run the tests at 200 nits accros all devices. http://images.anandtech.com/graphs/graph8687/69109.png

9. fzacek

Posts: 2486; Member since: Jan 26, 2014

Yes, good point. PA should specify this...

19. Finalflash

Posts: 4063; Member since: Jul 23, 2013

They did below and have done numerous times now. I assume they're trying to make it as fair as possible and compared to Anandtech which just does synthetic benchmarks, a script running normal apps and the phone itself in a realistic manner is more useful for comparing battery data. I think other reviewers should also do some scripted tests since almost everyone cheats on synthetic benchmarks.

22. rd_nest

Posts: 1656; Member since: Jun 06, 2010

Without knowing what the script looks like, I don't know how you could say so. Have you seen their scripts?

11. PapaSmurf

Posts: 10457; Member since: May 14, 2012

Waiting for PA to reply saying their test are all okay and that there's nothing wrong on their end.

14. kent-gaga

Posts: 609; Member since: Apr 10, 2012

looks like they already did :v

12. Ray.S

Posts: 455; Member since: Jul 19, 2011

Our settings are definitely consistent from test to test. Phone screens are always set to 200-nit brightness, and their software settings are equally adjusted so that one doesn't draw more power than the other.

15. medicci37

Posts: 1361; Member since: Nov 19, 2011

In other words "get a life" lol

16. rd_nest

Posts: 1656; Member since: Jun 06, 2010

OK. That's good. Now, do you only run a webscipt? It's better if you also test video playback times.

37. pyradark

Posts: 895; Member since: Jun 10, 2012

In other words check gsmarena

30. SuperAndroidEvo

Posts: 4888; Member since: Apr 15, 2011

Tell him Ray S. Drop that hammer! +1

35. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

Get em Ray!

41. Rapha.194

Posts: 34; Member since: Sep 23, 2014

Because Anandtech the iPhone has great battery and the battery is bad here?

13. a1369366

Posts: 27; Member since: Aug 24, 2014

when doing review, they never mention which variant was used for the test....say Note 4, I dont know if thats the snapdragon 805 performance or Exynos

29. jaytai0106

Posts: 1888; Member since: Mar 30, 2011

It's just a comparison test and doesn't reflect the real life performance. Beside, if you really do hang up by those result, please go buy the phones you want to compare and use them the same way for 1 week straight. Then the average of the result would be more accurate for your needs.

7. LetsBeHonest

Posts: 1548; Member since: Jun 04, 2013

Well it is pretty good result. But it seems like Sony,motorola droid turbo abd Samsung with their touch wiz outclassed nexus with their project volta. And special thumps up for Sony for achieve such impressive result with same capacity battery.

8. mayur007

Posts: 593; Member since: Apr 10, 2012

Lol i thought only iphones record mono while recording this phone also Not worth the price mentioned

10. bugsbunny00

Posts: 2262; Member since: Jun 07, 2013

well that's not impressive,..i thought wrong...

17. medicci37

Posts: 1361; Member since: Nov 19, 2011

If Google was going to start charging flagship prices they should have done a better job on design & performance. Imo the Note 4 kicks is a couple notches above the Nexus 6

18. YourNickname

Posts: 127; Member since: Aug 14, 2014

Are we sure this is the latest version of lolipop for the nexus 6? wasn't there an error in a previous version with battery drain? Maybe this is an early model without the update needed. Don't want to wait 7 months for the LG G4... :(

20. uzbek-mobile-man

Posts: 118; Member since: Sep 27, 2014

Please, tell me if you are using LG G3 and Google Nexus 6. Right now I am using HTC One M7. It's one of the best smartphones. But, indoors, in low-light situations, its camera takes photos and records video awfully, there's red-purple tint issue. Its battery is not removable. Its display is not big for internet surfing. I need best cameraphone for photos and videos, indoors and outdoors. I need a phone with large display for internet and watching videos. What about LG G3 and Google Nexus 6? Their cameras for taking photos and recording videos indoors and outdoors? Are their flash light during camera working, video ilght? If they are good phones, I will buy one of them instead of HTC One M7. Please, tell me. Thank you beforehand.

21. uzbek-mobile-man

Posts: 118; Member since: Sep 27, 2014

Please, tell me if you are using LG G3 and Google Nexus 6. Right now I am using HTC One M7. It's one of the best smartphones. But, indoors, in low-light situations, its camera takes photos and records video awfully, there's red-purple tint issue. Its battery is not removable. Its display is not big for internet surfing. I need best cameraphone for photos and videos, indoors and outdoors. I need a phone with large display for internet and watching videos. What about LG G3 and Google Nexus 6? Their cameras for taking photos and recording videos indoors and outdoors? Are their flash light during camera working, video ilght? If they are good phones, I will buy one of them instead of HTC One M7. Please, tell me. Thank you beforehand.

24. Dude2014

Posts: 448; Member since: Feb 12, 2014

I'm not Samsung fanboy but when I saw what you said, Galaxy Note 4 immediately came to my mind. 5.7" QHD Super AMOLED Display (Best display on this planet atm. Big but not too big. Very good for web browsing and watching videos) 16mp with OIS (Not best but still one of the best camera out there. Good indoor and excellent outdoor with its amazing HDR mode. Samsung's unbeatable in smartphone HDR. Capturing videos and taking photos in HDR mode is the best I've ever seen. Galaxy S5's poor low light performance was disappointed but Note 4's low light performance is decent thanks to OIS.) Like you, I'm also currently using HTC One M7 and the only issue I have with camera is it overexpose too Much while shooting in bright conditions like shooting sky blue. In door are pretty good. Low light is not good but not too bad either. I owned LG G3 and recommend you not to buy that phone. I sold it because its battery is really bad. Camera is okay but not as good as Note 4. It's UI is ugly and not that smooth. For Nexus 6, I don't know because I've never seen Nexus 6 personally in real life yet. I've used my friend's Note 4 and it's really an amazing phone. The only thing I don't like is Touchwiz. It is not lag but still noticeably not as smooth as HTC Sense or Stock Android. If you want to try other platforms, go for iPhone 6 plus or Nokia Lumia 1520. Good luck!

45. uzbek-mobile-man

Posts: 118; Member since: Sep 27, 2014

I like Nokia Lumia 1020 and Nokia Lumia 1520. But, unfortunately, these phones are only GSM network based phones. I do not like GSM network, Global System for Mobile communications. I always use CDMA phones, Code Division Multiple Access. Here in Uzbekistan Perfectum Mobile and Uzmobile are CDMA operators. The difference between them are that Perfectum Mobile works on CDMA 800 MHz, while Uzmobile works on CDMA 450 MHz. The best one of them is CDMA 800 MHz. Because, modern and best phones works this network, like Apple, HTC, Samsung, LG, Nokia, Motorola and others. In the USA, Verizon Wireless and Sprint works on CDMA 800 MHz, like Perfectum Mobile in Uzbekistan. CDMA 450 MHz based phones are not too good. You can not find good phones for 450 MHz. GSM network is not twice or thrice, but 20 times more harmful for human`s health than CDMA network. What would happen, if Nokia corporation made Lumia 1020 and Lumia 1520 for CDMA network too? It would be nice, if these phones were GSM+CDMA phones. Unfortunately, they are only GSM network based phones. Hey, Microsoft! Make new phones like Lumia 1020 and Lumia 1520 GSM+CDMA network based phones, pleaseeeeeeeee! Am I right, my friends?

23. Dude2014

Posts: 448; Member since: Feb 12, 2014

Isn't Android 5.0 Lollipop supposed to have 30% more battery efficiency than other previous Android versions? I remember Google said that when they first announced Android L. And now? Huehuehue

25. Phonedingo

Posts: 399; Member since: Aug 16, 2014

It's a QHD display,all things considered it's pretty good.

39. medicci37

Posts: 1361; Member since: Nov 19, 2011

&so is the display on the Note 4... Your point being?

28. rowdysheeter

Posts: 74; Member since: Sep 10, 2014

the reading for the N6 therefore should be 7h 53 min [minus] 30% = 5h 51 min :)

32. MorePhonesThanNeeded

Posts: 645; Member since: Oct 23, 2011

Didn't 5.0 just roll out to Nexus devices? I highly doubt that they had the release 5.0 running on this phone so it's probably running Kit Kat 4.4.4 for this test.

36. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

The nexus 6 is running 5.0 out of the box. Every other phone is running 4.4.4 or older. So, this begs the question of how long the Note4's battery life will be when it gets the 5.0 upgrade.

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