After all the Pixel-related hoopla yesterday Android Police
confirmed with Google that the Nexus brand is effectively dead. I think I've come to terms with it; Nexus hasn't really been the same since late 2013 anyway, when the Nexus 5—codenamed hammerhead
—went on sale.
The Nexus 5 finished what the Nexus 4 started, offering high-end specs at an affordable price. The final pieces to this puzzle that were added by the 5 include a full HD screen, LTE radio and optically-stabilized rear camera. Battery life wasn't spectacular, but this was offset somewhat by the convenience of inductive charging.
And, of course, being a Nexus meant that hammerhead was a modder's dream. It was my first testbed for Xposed Modules
, ran one of my all-time favourite custom ROMs, SlimKat
, and was even compatible with MultiROM
, allowing me to boot into Android, Sailfish and Ubuntu all on the same phone. Hammerhead continues to be useful to this day; it's currently the only device that can run Maru OS
, transforming a humble smartphone into a fully-functioning Debian-powered desktop computer.
You could go so far as to call The Nexus 5 the anti-iPhone. Where Apple's flagship was locked down and expensive, Google's alternative was open and affordable. It seems to have sold pretty well, too; I still see the occasional Nexus 5 when I'm out in the world. 2013 actually saw two
Nexus successes: the second-gen Nexus 7 tablet was (and is) also pretty great.