Enterprise Mobility: Google 3G Nexus One Drives Search Giant into Smartphone Market

 
 
By Chris Preimesberger  |  Posted 2010-01-05
 
 
 

Google 3G Nexus One Drives Search Giant into Smartphone Market

by Chris Preimesberger

Google 3G Nexus One Drives Search Giant into Smartphone Market

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The Nexus One, designed and built by HTC, looks similar to any number of other smartphones, but it sports a metal belt that can be personally engraved for identification or dedication purposes.

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The Nexus One features a cool interactive home page. In this one, the water in the picture ripples and leaves floating on it drift around. Touch the screen, and the water ripples outward, as in real life.

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Google Voice applications plus regular phone apps are included on the Nexus One. Although there is a keyboard available, many users may find themselves using the voice recognition feature more often than not. Users can call up a person to e-mail, for example, speak the message into the Nexus One, which converts voice into type, and send the message with one click. Instant messaging and GPS apps work the same way.

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From left: Motorola CEO Sanjay Jha, HTC CEO Peter Chou, Google Vice President of Mobile Products Andy Rubin and Google Vice President of Product Development Mario Queiroz answer questions from the media.

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HTC CEO Peter Chou meets with a couple of reporters after the event. Chou said he bought into the Android and Nexus One concept more than two years ago and was convinced then that it would be a success. The Nexus One is the seventh HTC smartphone to hit the market.

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"I'm ready for my close-up now, Mr. DeMille." The Nexus One was scrutized from every angle during the launch event in Mountain View, Calif., on Jan. 5, 2010.

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The Nexus One runs on the open-source Android 2.1 operating system. Three of the most-used applications will likely be Google Maps, an integrated Facebook and the Quick Contents directory. All can be utilized with the voice recognition option.

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Use of the integrated Twitter application for messaging and obtaining news—a feature that appears to be growing daily in popularity—will be widespread, Google executives said.

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The Nexus One will be sold—at least at the outset of its life—via the Web only. Google's new Web store went online Jan. 5. Customers can choose between two options at this time: unconnected ($529) or a T-Mobile account with two-year services contract ($179). Verizon in the United States and Vodafone in Europe will make plans available sometime in 2010, Google said.

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The Nexus One's voice-activated GPS and travel applications always know where the user is located and offer directions from that very spot.

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Google Senior Product Manager Erick Tseng extolled the virtues of the Nexus One's 3.7-inch display and its "deep contrasty, brilliant colors." The device runs on a 1GHz Snapdragon processor from Qualcomm and is powerful enough to run multiple apps simultaneously.

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Because the Nexus One software is mostly open source, many of the applications it runs will be given back to the community for further development. Google continues to build its independent open-source development community, and the Nexus One is expected to provoke renewed enthusiasm.

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IT reporter David Needle gets a demonstration from one of the ubiquitous Google staff members, who donned lab coats on launch day. Google made sure to state that it —and not the manufacturer, HTC—is the retailer of record and will handle all distribution and warranties.

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