Google's Nexus One smartphone, the Android 2.1-based device the company initially offered solely through its Webstore in January, is now at retail stores in the United States.
But it's not at Best Buy, Radio Shack or the usual consumer electronics shops. T-Mobile affiliate i wireless said it has begun offering the Nexus One for $299.95 and a couple other Android devices under the "I Am Android" marketing slogan.
The Urbandale, Iowa-based retailer is now selling the Nexus One, HTC Hero ($99.95) and Motorola Milestone ($149.95) through its i wireless Website and at more than 250 retail locations.
I wireless will also offer the Samsung Behold II, though it's not yet listed under the Android section on its Website.
"We are excited to add the most popular Android devices to our complete lineup of smartphones," said Gary Baron, vice president of marketing at i wireless. "Customers will be given the option to choose from Motorola, HTC and Samsung models that best fit their lifestyle."
The retailer promised that T-Mobile customers will be able to access T-Mobile's 3G network in Des Moines and Ames, Iowa, and in more than 130 cities in the United States. serving over 200 million people.
I wireless pledged to provide 3G service in the Quad Cities, Cedar Rapids, Waterloo/Cedar Falls and Iowa City markets throughout the summer. The company also serves eastern Nebraska.
I wireless is the first of what could be many retailers to offer the Nexus One in a reversal for Google. The search engine and erstwhile mobile phone provider began selling the Nexus One Jan. 5 for $179.95 with a two-year contract from T-Mobile or unlocked for $529.
However, Google offered the device only online through its Webstore, a strategy that backfired when consumers opted to buy phones they could hold in their hands.
Google May 14 said it miscalculated consumer interest in purchasing the device through its Webstore.
The company said it would stop selling the smartphone through its Webstore once it found sufficient placement for the device, which with multitouch features such as pinch-to-zoom and a 1GHz processor provides a suitable alternative to Apple's iPhone.
I wireless provides one of those venues for Google to sell the device in United States.