Google announced the Nexus 6P and Nexus 5X on Tuesday, stating that it would only sell these smartphones at the Google Store online instead of carrier stores. Well, it seems as though Google stated something in the announcement that didn’t become clear until after the fact, but the Nexus 6P and Nexus 5X are both compatible with CDMA carriers Verizon, Sprint, and US cellular since these carriers run on bands 0, 1, and 10 (which are supported on the Nexus 6P and Nexus 5X). You can find proof of Verizon, Sprint, and US Cellular support under the Support menu at the Google Store (see “Nexus tech specs,” then scroll down to “Network” and look for the CDMA list under North America).
Since Google is selling its devices unlocked, as the company did in the past (prior to the Nexus 6), it seemed as though only GSM carriers T-Mobile and AT&T would support the device. Google, however, has decided to allow CDMA carrier customers to still purchase the device from the Google Store and use it on their respective networks, regardless.
Google’s Nexus 6P and Nexus 5X are also compatible with Google’s own Project Fi carrier network, which combines the networks of T-Mobile and Sprint under one roof – so it makes sense as to why Google would support both GSM (T-Mobile) and CDMA (Sprint) carriers. It’s also a good thing that Google is doing this. Somewhere, some customers will cherish the idea of paying for their smartphone online in one pop and not having a monthly, off-contract expense. In fact, customers who purchase the Nexus 6P or Nexus 5X will likely save on their bill and see their bill cut back because they won’t need carriers to put them on a payment plan for their phone (they would only pay for the service).
At the same time, however, there are a number of customers who won’t find either device inexpensive, even if the 16GB LG Nexus 5X, for example, is $380. Can you imagine a family of 4 trying to pay $1500 online in full on purchase day just to get the latest from Google? We’re sure that singles or even a couple may find it easy to afford (since two 16GB LG Nexus 5X phones is the equivalent of one 16GB Apple iPhone 6s Plus in price), but a number of customers with large families (at least 2 or 3 teenagers) may not find Google’s pricing comfortable for their pockets and hard to swallow.
Prior to the Nexus 6, Google’s Nexus line was cheap and inexpensive, offering quick updates, access to the latest Android update before the rest of Android world, and having an affordable price tag with it. Google’s stepped up its game this year with the Nexus 6P and Nexus 5X, but the company’s decision to improve its offering from past years means that customers can expect to pay a pretty penny for a pretty sweet phone.
The Nexus 6P will cost $499 for the 32GB model (base for the Huawei Nexus), $549 for 64GB, and $649 for the 128GB storage model. The LG Nexus 5X will cost $379.99 for the 16GB model and $429 for the 32GB model. There is no 64GB or 128GB storage model for the LG Nexus 5X. Both feature Android Marshmallow and can be purchased alongside of a $69 (LG Nexus 5X) and $89 (Huawei Nexus 6P) Nexus Protect plan.