Google Winds Down Nexus One Sales Amid Android 2.2 Upgrade

By Clint Boulton  |  Posted 2010-07-17

Google said it has received its last shipment of Nexus One smartphones from manufacturer HTC and will no longer offer the Android 2.1-based handsets when this batch is gone.

However, the company will still provide customer support for current Nexus One customers, which began receiving Android 2.2 upgrades over the air in late June.

Customers will still be able to procure the handset from Vodafone in Europe, KT in Korea and local market retailers such as i Wireless in the midwest United States, Google said in a statement July 16.

Google will also be offering the Nexus One through a partner for sale to registered developers, who may visit the Android Market Publisher site and log into with their developer account to purchase a Nexus One.

Google began selling the Nexus One solely online through a new Webstore Jan. 5, eschewing the classic phone retail model where carriers invite consumers into their stores to buy handsets.

The device, which Google itself designed from top to bottom to stand for what the company wanted in a high-end smartphone, cost $529 unlocked or $179 subsidized by a two-year deal from T-Mobile.

Google also said Vodafone and Verizon would offer the device, and Sprint later vowed to sell it. Vodafone began selling the Nexus One April 30 in its UK stores, online and over the phone, but Verizon and then Sprint backed out.

Google directed consumers to buy the HTC Droid Incredible from Verizon, while Sprint said it would focus on offering the HTC Evo 4G phone.

Both the Incredible and Evo 4G run Android 2.1 but have several other features the Nexus One lacked.

Despite assurances from Google CFO Patrick Pichette April 15 the Nexus One was a profitable business for Google, weak sales prompted Google to decide to close the Nexus One Webstore May 14.  

Consumers simply didn't want to buy a phone sight unseen or without hefting it in their hands. Google and pundits argue the device was a success as it ushered in a whole new era of Android devices, including the Incredible, Evo 4G and new Motorola Droid X.

The closing of the store concludes a chapter in the saga the company is writing with its Android platform, which is shipping more than 160,000 smartphones daily, supported by 70,000 applications in the Android Market application store.  


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