Google executives in India are planning to launch the Nexus One in India. However, in their words it will not be in its US avatar. This was stated by Shailesh Rao who heads Google India at an Editorial Meet. CNBC TV 18 representative at the meet tweeted the following:
Nexus One will not come to India in its US avatar, the India specific Google Phone may be a stripped down version and priced lower!
Nothing more than these supposed plans is known as of yet. While it is rather surprising that Google would plan to axe features to reduce cost since Apple did not tinker with their iPhone when it launched in India and their decision to give a unified and better experience to anyone who’s willing to pay has been a mantra for their success. There are several cheaper’ Android alternatives with lesser features available in India from HTC and as such Google might be able capitalize on their brand name but there is no sophisticated way to put this – Google’s decision is rather stupid. In an attempt to sell in numbers they’ll be diluting the Nexus One brand. However, I should point out that such moves are often made by handset manufacturers. The HTC Touch2 is available in two versions in India, one is with 3G and Wi-Fi, the other is without, and both these models have a significant price difference.
If you were to ask me, I’d rather not buy a stripped down Nexus One phone knowing that there is a version that has more features and would rather look for alternatives from HTC that will have the missing features at a price point close to that of the stripped down Nexus One.
Google Buzz is here, big time for some, been there done it for some, but it is here and it will live around for a long time, no matter whether everyone likes it or not.
So where is the Google Buzz Love? Well, two of the most high profile technology and social blogs have it. TechCrunch just announced that you can now share their posts on Google Buzz using a new Buzz it button. However, this feature taps into a Share feature in Google Reader and does not integrate into Google Buzz itself. Google Reader shared items are included into your Google Buzz updates.
Earlier in the day, Mashable also announced a contest to give away a Nexus One, if you join them on Google Buzz. To take part in the contest users have to join Mashable to your Google Buzz account and answer few questions they ask through their account.
This is the earliest adaptation I have seen of any product by high profile sites. Google Wave was one of the worst products from Google, it’s lighter clone (or as many call it Friendfeed in disguise) definitely has a lot in store for the future. What do you think?
The father of Linux, Linus Torvalds has given the Nexus One from Google a big thumbs-up. He is happy the phone uses the Android platform which is a Linux fork, and said in a blog post,
I have to admit, the Nexus One is a winner. I wasn’t enthusiastic about buying a phone on the internet sight unseen.
Linus Torvalds admits to not being a phone fan but is very happy with the features on offer with the Google Nexus One, which he reportedly bought just a week ago. He writes,
I’ve wanted to have a GPS unit for my car anyway, and I thought that google navigation might finally make a phone useful.
The Nexus One is high on specs with a 3.7 inches OLED screen, a 5 MP camera, a 1 GHz snapdragon processor and all that makes your phone into a masterpiece of gadgetry. Along with that, we have an awesome design from HTC. All this is packed into a phone which in spite of getting a good hype, had a bumpy start. The late SDK release upset many developers and the prices and availability issues were unwelcome by many. This praise effort from Linus will possibly bring back the Nexus One its lost charm.
Voice recognition in mobile phones has been a boon for people who just don’t have the time to type, and yes, the world has lost all their ball pens and keyboards and want software to decipher and understand what they say rather than having to spend time typing it all out.
However, there are several reports which suggest that the Nexus One refuses to understand abusive languages, not out of robotic ignorance, but because Google decided to teach their robots to be non-abusive.
"We filter potentially offensive or inappropriate results because we want to avoid situations whereby we might misrecognize a spoken query and return profanity when, in fact, the user said something completely innocent,"
However, not only is the F word censored, there are several other abusive words which do not work in the text-to-speech feature built into the Nexus One. Google, would you allow us to use our choice of words, or do you plan to control that as well, eh?
Disclaimer: I am not suggesting you use abusive words on your phone, however, it is not right to limit abusive words because your software or robot will get it wrong, it is after all plain English, don’t you get that?
Although direct sales isn’t something new in most parts of the world (like in India), it remains a novel business model in the US. Most people are used to purchasing phones, at subsidized rates, from the carriers. Of course, Google is trying to change all that and is allowing people to directly order unlocked models of Nexus One.
The trouble with cutting out the carriers is that, Google will now have to be responsible for everything related to Nexus One, including after sales customer support. However, from the look of things, Google isn’t equipped to provide the level of customer support required. Google seems to be accepting only e-mail queries, which it promises to reply within one or two days. However, this isn’t fast enough for most people.
Frustrated with Google some people are turning to their mobile carriers or HTC (manufacturer), but mostly in vain. HTC as well as the mobile carriers are mostly referring customers back and forth and to Google. One customer going by the username Roland78 had to spend one and a half hour on the phone and was transferred between T-Mobile and HTC four times. “T-Mobile also said Google hasn’t provided them with any support documents for the phone. Welcome to direct sales Google!he commented.
Direct sales model has its own benefits, including more freedom and often lower total cost of ownership. However, Google needs to get its act together and fast. The online boards are getting flooded with comments about the poor quality of service. In fact there are complaints regarding other aspects including billing and order confirmation.
Andy Rubin, Google Engineering VP, mentioned that there might be a possibility of the enterprise version of Nexus One to have a physical keyboard and a bigger battery, while on stage during the ongoing CES (Consumer Electronic Show) 2010. The original question asked to Andy Rubin, by Walk Mossberg, was whether Google will launch more phones during this year or not. Mossberg also asked about the possibility of a smaller or mini version of Nexus One like the Nokia N97 Mini to which Rubin’s nodded his head which implied a No! Rubin also praised the guys at HTC, who will be manufacturing the Nexus One for Google.
He said We threw out crazy ideas to our partners at HTC and they were pretty good about plucking the good ones out of the air and building them into the device.
Rubin also told that Google Nexus One is the start of a new breed of Superphonein the market. He said that Google wanted to make purchasing phones for consumer more efficient and thus the idea of buying the phone directly through Google Checkout.
Google homepage is usually free of advertisements, and very seldom do you see links to any other sites or services, except for maybe Google Doodles. However, SE Land just spotted that Google is now promoting the Nexus One phone on the most popular homepage on earth.
I confirmed that the device is being promoted on the US homepage, however, I could not see it on the other home pages where the Nexus One will be available.
The link takes users to google.com/phone, where Google will be selling the Nexus One phone exclusively. Incidentally this is not the first time that Google has been promoting their products. Quite recently, Google started promoting Google Chrome on their home page.
Though this is perfectly legal and ethical, many users will still create a hue and cry about this, due to Google’s powerful reach. So should we expect complaints to the trade unions now? ;-)
However, now that the phone is out and users can buy it for either $179 with a contract or $599 unlocked at google.com/phone, is it really worth buying?
BillShrink has the answer to that question in the form of a cost of ownership comparison between the Nexus One, iPhone 3GS, Motorola Droid and Palm Pre.
From the comparison done, Palm Pre is the cheapest phone to own over 2 years. However, Nexus One is cheaper than both the Motorola Droid and iPhone 3GS, thanks to the network it will be available on, T-Mobile.
Take a look at the chart below, courtesy BillShrink.
Recently, Nexus One was launched at the Android Press Conference. So we decided to do a detailed comparison of Nexus One, Motorola Droid and iPhone 3GS. The following comparison will help you to find out the best phone according to your needs.