Pixel-ating saga

I’m at 4 phones in the past 4 years, which isn’t something I anticipated after usually doing the 1 phone every 2 year thing.

Phone Dates Price Purchase
LG Nexus 4 Dec 2012 – Jan 2015 $349 Google Play – BNIB
LG Nexus 5 Jan 2015 – Nov 2015 $220 Swappa – Used
LG Nexus 5X Nov 2015 – Dec 2016 $349 B&H – BNIB
Google Pixel (by HTC) Dec 2016 $649 $349 Best Buy/Verizon – BNIB

I realized I didn’t have a post for the Nexus 5X last year. I totally expected to hold pat with my Nexus 5 for a while, but then the Nexus 5X came up at $349 + a $25 B&H gift card at Black Friday, so I bit the bullet. It was a solid midrange phone with an amazing camera at its purchase price, relative to its bigger brother the Nexus 6P. It just happened that those 3 Nexus phones I purchased were made by LG, and I’d never had a problem with them before.

Until now that is. Various reports on the r/Nexus5X subreddit have been complaining about bootloops on the phone around the 12 month mark, and true to form, my phone decided to go belly up at 12.5 months out. Thankfully, it decided to KO after I got home from a night out (12/16), so that could’ve been worse. And with how I already had regular backups on my more important items (pictures and the like), the transfer process wasn’t so bad as I went back to my Nexus 5 for like a week.

As I read on about people trying to contact Google and/or LG for warranty assistance, everyone kept mentioning how they were getting the run around (mostly from LG). How “repaired” devices were sent back either not booting or bootlooping immediately, how some users were offered refunds and/or “upgrades” to a LG G4 or LG G5, yet 2 months later they’re still without a phone from the process. No one wants to deal with that madness.

So I chose to go through Amex for assistance, as I’d purchased my phone via my Amex card (not even a fancy one, just a regular “Blue Cash Everyday” card), and it took <2 weeks for me to initiate the extended warranty process, turn in my documents, and receive a resolution in my favor, with the full purchase price of the Nexus 5X credited to my CC. I guess a better outcome would’ve been a check in the mail, but this is pretty good too.

Now about how I got the Pixel at $349, that’s another long story tangentially related to this one. It’s all thanks to Best Buy and their various promotions for opening Verizon lines over this Holiday season (that I wish I could’ve taken more advantage of, but couldn’t).

I bought my sister a Pixel at $10/month x24 months on Verizon’s DPP plan via Best Buy. That came with a $100 Best Buy gift card. And paid that off at $240 flat. (Net -$140)

I bought an iPhone SE at $12/month x24 months on Verizon’s DPP plan via Best Buy, and that came with a $200 Best Buy gift card. And paid that off at $290, and sold on Swappa for $350 after taxes/fees etc. (Net +$260)

I bought a Pixel (12/18) for myself at $649 flat, but applied the $100 and $200 BB GC’s to lower the price to $349, and received another $100 GC with purchase. And of course, getting my money back via Nexus 5X Amex warranty means this came out to $0 for this phone.

It was a bit of work, and it took a HP credit hit from Verizon, but with the savings I’ve gotten/gains I net (saved $400 on Pixel, made <$100 on iPhone SE, and saved $300 (GC’s) on another Pixel), that easily surpasses the avg value of a HP hit at $500.

And of course, <$50 cash back thanks to 5% credit card on all this spending.

Here’s hoping the vaunted HTC quality and Google’s s’posed increased input on design language will result in a phone that’ll last a little while longer.

[Edit] Decided to try LG Warranty for N5x

1/11/17: Sent in phone
1/13:17: Received Confirmation
1/20/17: Return ship confirmation
1/24-26/17: Fedex attempt delivery (signature -.-)
1/27/17: Pickup at Fedex location (Sante Fe Springs -.-)
1/27/17: Sell on CL for $220

That wasn’t warranty nightmare as other’s have described, as it was like a 7 day turnaround, or about 2 wks including shipping. All in all, $349 for phone, $349 back on warranty claim, and $220 CL  sale = +$220 from using the phone for a year. lol.

[Edit 2] T-mobile Pixel promotion finally applied to our Tmo account on 4/13/17, after submitting claim on 1/3/17, not getting an update for 11 wks, finding out they stealth denied it on 1/6/17, asking for escalation, and receiving noticed on 4/19/17 that they approved it.

And instead of the 24 months credit of $13.54, they lump sum applied $325 to our account. The value from getting a Pixel just keeps on getting better and better.

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