My colleague Chris Hazelton shared some interesting thoughts about the introduction of the Google Nexus One in a report he published recently. We both share the view that this device, while interesting on a number of levels, is unlikely, all by itself, to change the dynamics of the market here in the U.S. Here are a few points from his analysis:
- Google Nexus One is an unlocked GSM device manufactured for Google by HTC. That means that customers face a choice between AT&T and T-Mobile as service providers. Since the device doesn't support AT&T's 3G frequencies and purchasers of this device are likely to use the network a great deal, the choice people have is really between T-Mobile and T-Mobile. I guess that means that T-Mobile is likely to win most of the business for this device in the U.S.
- The market for smartphones is really crowded and a number of really good devices are available. Apple, Blackberry, Motorola, Palm, Samsung and quite a few others have offerings that present similar capabilities. Getting through the noise is going to be a challenge.
- While Google's Android operating system (an operating system based upon Linux) has garnered quite bit of interest due to a series of extensive and expensive advertising campaigns put on by Google, Verizon, T-Mobile and even AT&T Wireless, it is not always the best choice for some classes of use.
- Applications seem to be increasingly important for device selection. If an application or a reasonable substitute is available across all devices, then price of that application becomes an important selection criteria. Although Android's application portfolio is growing rapidly, Apple's iPhone has a significant lead. So, if the availability for a specific application is the deciding factor, Apple is likely to win. This, by the way, also is a reason that Windows Mobile devices face an uphill battle. Applications may be available for Windows Mobile devices, but they often are far more expensive than those doing the same thing that are available for Apple's iPhone. A simple solitaire game that is a free download in the iTunes store often is priced at $4.99 in Microsoft's Market Place.
This analysis, of course, is only a summary of a more comprehensive report. It does point out, however, that Google and its partners have their work cut out for them.
Are you considering this device? If so, what about it and its capabilities would cause you to reject products from Apple, Motorola, Palm, Samsung and the like?