Why I'm Returning My Nexus 5

Just got off the phone with Google to return my Nexus 5 less than 24 hours after I opened the package. Why you ask?

The Ergonomics

It was obvious after holding this device for 10 minutes that it is a serious ergonomics regression from the Nexus 4; the red pressure point where the bottom corner digs into my palm is a testament to that. While the overall dimensions have not changed all that significantly from the Nexus 4, the significantly sharper corners completely change the reach of my thumb in one-handed usage. For me, that change brings me back to the ergonomics of my HTC One X; great device, but way too much hand yoga while I check email between meetings.

The Materials

Where the Nexus 4 had a grippy soft-touch rubber siding that the tips of my fingers could grip in one-handed usage, the Nexus 5 has a slippery plastic side that requires me to re-grip constantly. The confidence I have holding the Nexus 4 is just gone -> I now have to think about how I handle this device.

The Disappointment

I really wanted to love this device. I obsessed over the leaks, the details, anticipated the lifting of embargo at 2pm EST, and reverse engineered the 32gb white page before it went live on the main storefront so I could order while stock remained. I blindly trusted Google that the Nexus 5 would continue to take into consideration the intricacies of ergonomics and materials, and deliver a device that continued to fit in my hand with comfort and confidence. As a 5'10" guy with regular sized hands, I can't imagine I'm the only person with the same experience.

The software is fantastic, the screen is amazing, and the camera even sucks less than The Verge led me to believe. But, I just can't justify all those benefits when the phone feels terribly uncomfortable in my hand.

The irony is that I'll be switching to a MotoX - another Google device - which does deliver a fantastic "in your hand" experience. I'll just have to deal with older Android builds to get it. Curse you Google for your inconsistent design!