We’re smack-dab in the middle of a heated smartphone release cycle which means consumers have some really great new devices to choose from. If you are in the market for a new device, the next few weeks will provide you with a number of excellent models to consider. Two such handsets are the LG Nexus 5X and the Motorola Moto X Pure Edition.

The Nexus 5X is the newer of the pair, however there’s only a couple of weeks separating them. In other words, we might as well consider them both brand new. Let’s take a look at what makes up these two and see how they stack up against each other. To do so we’ll start with a head-to-head chart from our friends over at Graphiq.

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As you likely know, hardware isn’t the only thing that matters when it comes to picking out a smartphone. Software plays an important role in helping decide which model might be best for you. To that end, the Nexus 5X comes out ahead because it runs the absolute latest in Android.

Dubbed 6.0 Marshmallow, the newest release brings about a number of new features and native support for others. Google Now On Tap, for example, provides contextual answers and information to users without any effort. Other goodies found in Android 6.0 include support for USB Type C charging and fingerprint verification.

Perhaps one of the best features is the new way in which Android will hibernate apps and services to prolong battery life. As we all know, whether it’s fast charging or wireless, batteries could always use some help.

App permissions get smarter and more intuitive with Android 6.0, too. Customers will find that they have more control over which permissions are granted on an app; developers win with a better user experience that doesn’t ask for all of these requirements ahead of launching the app.

Either phone is going to give you a stock, or near stock software experience that is clear of any bloated carrier-backed apps. The Nexus will likely win in the long run with what expect to be more timely software updates, however Motorola has proven to be quite supportive of its older models, too. Really, it’s hard to go wrong with either one.


Although the Nexus 5X comes in three color options for 2015 (Carbon, Quartz, Ice), the advantage still belongs to Motorola. Thanks to its Moto Maker tool, the Moto X Pure Edition can be designed with more than 1,000 color, accents, and even back cover finishes. If you are looking for a phone that is uniquely you, you won’t beat Motorola.

Storage capacity

The Moto X Pure Edition is offered in three storage options: 16GB, 32GB, and 64GB. As for the Nexus 5X, it comes with only 16GB or 32GB capacities. Depending on your needs, and how much you rely on cloud backups and storage, this could be a moot point. Since both devices have options for 16GB or 32GB, the winner here is the Moto X Pure Edition due to the fact that you can go up to 64GB of storage. Additionally, the Moto X also offers microSD card support, so that sets the LG Nexus 5X a little bit further behind.


If you are the kind of person who looks strictly at specifications, the Motorola camera bests the one found in LG’s phone. But, until you see actual photos and consider your own needs, the jury is still out. We’re very curious to see how the 1.55 micron sensor looks, especially for low light conditions. As for not having optical image stabilization, that’s a bold move on Google’s part.

Around front, the battle is pretty equal due to the 5-megapixel sensor in the LG Nexus 5X while the Moto X Pure also includes a 5-megapixel shooter. Because of the fact that they are both 5-megapixel, this battle may come down to overall performance in regards to which can take the best selfie.


The Moto X Pure takes the cake in the battery department, but not by too much. The LG Nexus 5X features a 2750mAh battery, while the Moto X Pure Edition is sporting a 3000mAh battery. We’ll see how well Android Marshmallow does with their Doze settings, and if the latest version can really extend battery life by that much. Keep in mind, Motorola is usually right behind the Nexus devices with software updates, so it may not be too far off before Android Marshmallow makes its way to the Pure Edition.


You can pick up the Moto X Pure Edition from Motorola.com and pair it with any major service provider. This is essentially the same thing you’ll find in the Nexus line as Google sells it through its own store.


Perhaps one of the most important aspects in purchasing a smartphone, the overall cost often determines if a phone is “too rich for our blood”. Moreover, it’s price that helps us determine whether a certain feature is worth spending the cash or if we’re actually content with a little less.

The Moto X Pure Edition starts at $400 for the 16GB model with 32GB coming in at $450 and the 64GB option at $500. If you opt for a premium finish case (leather or wood), then look to add another $25 to the cost. The Nexus 5X starts at $379 for the 16GB model, with the 32GB variant coming in at $429. Either way, you’ll be saving some money with the Nexus 5X compared to the Pure Edition.

Other important aspects

Indeed, each phone has a few details that help to separate them from the rest of the pack. The Nexus 5X comes with a fingerprint reader on the rear, which is used for security and authentication. Depending on what you plan to do with your smartphone, this could be a make-or-break factor.

Something else worth noting, the Nexus 5X comes with a USB Type C charger. Why is that important? Well, we venture to guess you’ll need to get some new cords and chargers for the house and car if you plan to juice up throughout the day. This means some added cost to the bottom line. The Moto X Pure Edition still uses the micro USB port for charging and works with every single one of those cables we’ve collected over the years.


Which phone is right for you? We can’t answer that for you. You’ll have to weigh what’s important to you decide if it’s worth the extra money to go with the Nexus 5X. And, really, it’s not as if you have to settle for a Moto X Pure Edition. We simply love that phone and will gladly recommend it to anyone and everyone. LG seems to have stepped up their game for the Nexus 5X, hoping to repeat the cult-like following that the 2013 Nexus 5 received.

The Nexus line is one of our favorites in all of smartphones and we’re super pleased to see LG partnering with Google again for 2015. It’s only a matter of time before we see these two devices in a hands-on head to head comparison, so be sure to keep an eye out.

Note: Portions of this post’s content is also used in other head-to-head comparisons.
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  1. Micro SD makes the 16GB Moto X worth buying. I can add a 64GB microSD for my FLAC music and not use any internal storage. Nexus only gives me 32GB MAX.

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