If you thought Google was only into Software then you are absolutely wrong. You might have been right before 5th Jan 2010. However with the launch of its Smartphone – Nexus One a device with speech recognition, Google has finally announced its entry into the Hardware market.
Google and Hardware
Google’s decision to come out with a Smartphone is not surprising but I guess they have taken a bit long considering that they jumped into the mobile market with the announcement of developing a free Smartphone operating system(Android) 2 years back. Some of the readers might be interested to know why a search and Web Giant like Google would enter the Hardware market.
The reason is quite simple. Google has cemented its place in the Web and they want to diversify their business by entering into the hardware market. What’s driving Google’s foray into the mobile business may be a desire to dominate the market for Internet searches, just like it does on laptops and desktop computers. As every major decision has its pros and cons this too has.
- Expand its reach from the PC to the mobile world
- Google’s online products and ads get prominent placement on a new breed of wireless Internet devices.
- By producing its own phone and selling it directly, Google could alienate handset partners and actually harm its main goal of getting the company’s software onto more mobile devices.
- Google would be entering a lower-margin business in which it has little expertise, as well as fundamentally alter its DNA as one of the most creative software companies in the world.
- Success in hardware requires huge economies of scale and massive capital investment, but much like the computer industry, profits have steadily been squeezed as the handset business is commoditized. The bigger profits lie in software development.
According to experts there are more cons than pros but hey this is Google we are talking about who like to do things differently and we as consumers aren’t complaining!!
One look at Nexus and you would think it is like iPhone but a closer look at it will tell you that it is an ultimate Android handset, combining a newly tweaked and tightened user interface with killer industrial design.
HTC has done a wonderful job in making the phone absolutely lustworthy. From its ultra-thin body to sleek, curved edges the phone shape finds itself somewhere between the iPhone and Palm Pre. The Nexus One comes with the powerful 1 GHz Snapdragon processor, the fastest processor yet to run on a phone and thereby makes Android run very smoothly
The current version of the Smartphone’s running on Google’s android is 2.0.1 but Google have released Nexus with Android 2.1. Perhaps Google wanted to reserve the best version for their own phone!! The changes can be seen mainly in the look and feel of Homescreen Navigation (Obviously the feedback the company has got from its previous versions helped). Some of the changes worth mentioning are
- Sliding drawer is replaced by the Home icon which will zoom in your application icons over top of whatever homescreen you’re on.
- The number of homescreens accessible has been expanded from three to five.
I have reserved the best for the last. All the smart phones released these days do not offer the image quality which they promise. But Nexus is a class apart from the rest. It features a 5-megapixel camera with a LED flash and can capture video at 720-by-480 pixels at a minimum of 20 frames per second. One place where Google has really made some smart decisions is within the Gallery application. Browsing photos is a much more enjoyable experience with options of scan slideshow and nice pan.
Though Nexus One is manufactured by HTC and destined for use on T-Mobile’s network, Google will be the one doing the selling of the device. Google plans to have a phone portal where buyers can pick between an unsubsidized, unlocked Nexus One for $529.99, or sign up for a two-year agreement with T-Mobile and purchase the phone for $179.99. This shouldn’t seem strange or exciting to anyone who’s recently bought a smartphone — it’s pretty much the law of the land right now.
Comparison of Motorola Android, iPhone 3GS and Nexus One.
|iPhone 3GS||Motorola Droid||Nexus One|
||16 GB||16 GB||4 GB|
|Battery life||5 hours talk-time||6.4 hours talk-time||7 hours talk-time|
|Camera||3.0 Megapixel with Recording and Editing||5.0 Megapixel with video recording||5.0 Megapixel with video recording|
|App Store||iTunes App store||Android Market||Android Market|
|No of Apps||93,200||20,000||20,000|
Google does not feature ads on the homepage regularly,the only exceptions being for Android launches G1 and the Motorola Droid. The search engine Gaint has done it again . They have used the “most valuable ad space on the entire Internet” to promote their Smartphone Nexus One where everyone can see it. This kind of advertising is priceless.However this was done only on the launch date.
Commercial Break : The Nexus One – now at war with the iPhone
Hit or Miss
The industry experts have given the phone a thumbs up but it remains to be seen if the launch of Nexus provides Google with a viable challenge to the iPhone and Research in Motion’s BlackBerry?? Only time will tell !!