Google Nexus One Not a Failure Despite Slights by Sprint, Verizon
Analysts differ on whether Google's Webstore is a failure in the wake of Verizon and Sprint's decisions to nix the Google Nexus One smartphone on their respective networks. Some experts see the device and its delivery model as casualties of carriers' reluctance to support a device they can't sell through their own retail channels. Forrester Research Charles Golvin said Google's retail phone effort is indeed a failure to date, noting that consumers in the United States just aren't ready to buy phones sight unseen. Others don't see Google's Webstore as a failure because it's not the end goal where Android is concerned.Analysts have varying opinions about whether Google's Webstore is a failure in the wake of Verizon and Sprint's decisions to nix the Google Nexus One smartphone on their respective networks. Sprint reignited the theme May 10 when it confirmed it would not support the Android 2.1-based Nexus One on its network. The company told eWEEK it wanted to concentrate its efforts on selling the Android 2.1 HTC EVO 4G this summer.
Sprint's move came two weeks after Verizon Wireless decided it would nudge aside the Nexus One and instead market the HTC Droid Incredible, a device that boasts the same Android 2.1 OS and Qualcomm 1 GHz Snapdragon processor.
"What consumers want is not to just see the device and learn about it. They also want to experience the device, and that is where carrier/consumer electronics stores/branded stores (think Apple) are vital to selling more units," Llamas added. "Makes you wonder what would have happened if Google had its own retail stores. Besides, selling millions of units was not Google's end game. It was to help champion the Android platform and experience." Independent analyst Jack Gold echoed Llamas' thoughts, noting that the average life of a phone is only about 9 to 12 months anyway and the Nexus One is getting up there.