Nexus 5X Performance Issues: Users Complain Of Lagging Caused By Encryption, Throttling And RAM Issues


It's only been a month since the Nexus 5X from LG got released but complaints about the smartphone's performance have already filled forums and comment sections. Consumers have reported observable lag, stuttering and camera performance issues, which are allegedly brought about by throttling, encryption and inadequate RAM.

The Nexus 5X was released last month as the successor to the Nexus 5, which received a lot of positive reviews from both consumers and reviewers even with its flaws. With the fairly positive footprint of the Nexus 5, plenty of people got themselves a Nexus 5X. However, the multitude of complaints regarding the 5X's performance is setting it on a different path from its predecessor's.

"I'm starting to see enough evidence to think Google and LG really botched this phone," says Redditor bengrulz on his on the /r/Android subreddit.

He says encryption causes the slowdowns and poor performance in the Nexus 5X. Even the Nexus 5 from two years ago beats the 5X in terms of boot times. Yes, the 5X is encrypted and is expected to boot slower. However, a 20-second difference is just too much when taking into account that the new phone runs on a hexa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 808 compared to the Nexus 5's Snapdragon 800. Anandtech also noted of the slowdown.

"Sequential write speeds on the 5X end up being about equal to the G4, but the gap in sequential read speeds is enormous," Anandtech says. "It's clear that there's still a significant reduction in NAND performance caused by the use of FDE when only using ARMv8's cryptographic instructions to encrypt and decrypt data to be written."

Some users say turning off the encryption addresses the device's slowdown. However, this doesn't really work for people who require secure use of the fingerprint scanner.

SoC throttling is also another major issue that significantly slows down the Nexus 5x.

"Snapdragon 808 can only keep its two A57 cores at their peak frequency for two minutes before throttling both down to 633MHz and putting the A53s up to their peak 1.44GHz," Anandtech says in its Nexus 5X system performance review. "After 12 minutes the A57s are just shut off entirely, and you're left with a cluster of 4 A53 cores at 1.44GHz."

Users of the LG V10, LG G4 and Moto X Pure Edition, which use the same SoC, have not complained about the same issues.

Another problem is with the device's sluggish camera performance and freezes, which a lot of other users have reported. The issues get amplified when Snapchat is running in the background. It is not clear how Snapchat manages to impale the phone's performance but it's possible the phone's 2 GB RAM is "inadequate," as deemed by users. 

Phone Arena is currently running a poll to find out if the issue extends to every Nexus 5X unit.

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