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Google Nexus One
Flurry estimates that Google has sold just 135k Nexus One smartphones

Google's Nexus One made big waves on the internet when its details were leaked late last year and again when it was officially announced ahead of CES 2010. The Nexus One was described as the next "iPhone Killer" by many and was billed by Google as the "next stage in evolution for the Android".

The smartphone -- which is powered by Android 2.1 -- hit all the right hardware notes thanks to a 1GHz Snapdragon processor, 3.7" (480x800) AMOLED display, multi-touch, and a generous 1400 mAh battery. What could possibly go wrong with Google's full backing, a sleek exterior design, and geek-friendly hardware specs?

Well, everything has gone wrong according to Flurry Analytics. Flurry, if you recall, is the company that first spotted a few dozen iPad devices running iPhone OS 3.2 right before the official launch of the device. Flurry estimates that Google has managed to sell only 135,000 Nexus One smartphones in its first 74 days of availability – Flurry uses the 74 day benchmark because that's how many days it took for the original iPhone to reach the one million mark back in 2007.

If Flurry's numbers are accurate, the Nexus One appears to be actually losing momentum rather quickly considering that Google sold an estimated 80,000 units during the month of January and has only added another 55,000 sales in the past month and a half.

For comparison, another Android device which has made headlines in the past few months is doing quite well in the marketplace. Flurry estimates that Motorola sold 1.05 million Droid smartphones during the first 74 days of availability.

The reasons for the Nexus One's failure are plentiful. The device is barely known about outside of the tech circle, the phone has to be purchased directly from Google, and T-Mobile doesn't quite have the same clout as AT&T or Verizon. The Motorola Droid is backed by the United States' largest wireless carrier, Verizon. Apple's iPhone, on the other hand, is the crowning jewel of second place network AT&T.

“Despite the fact that the Google Nexus One is the most advanced Android handset to date, and enjoyed substantial buzz leading up to its release, the launch has been overshadowed by lower than expected sales,” stated Flurry on the company blog. “In our previous reports we offered several possible reasons including unconventional choices in marketing, pricing and distribution.”

The Nexus One is supposed to launch on Verizon's network later this spring, so hopefully Google will see an uptick in sales at that time.

Updated 3/16/2010

Google is now offering the unlocked Nexus One to wireless customers on the AT&T network.

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By Drag0nFire on 3/16/2010 11:51:10 AM , Rating: 2
I also think the two phones are essentially different, and target different user bases. Linux is a great OS, but it is not for everyone; most consumers would be better off with Windows or Mac OS.

In the same way, I think Android is best for someone who is willing to tinker to get the results they want. The level of control available to end users is unparalleled among smart phone OSes, but this is only good if the user has appropriate experience and is willing to invest time and effort.

Many people want a smart phone that just works intuitively. This was the iPhone's great success, and Microsoft seems to be bargaining for the same in Win PHone 7. Android isn't designed for this market.

That said, I too will get a Nexus when it hits VZW.

By adiposity on 3/16/2010 12:50:39 PM , Rating: 5
Many people want a smart phone that just works intuitively. This was the iPhone's great success, and Microsoft seems to be bargaining for the same in Win PHone 7. Android isn't designed for this market.

I disagree. I love to tinker. But in spite of that, the reason I got my Android phone (Droid) was that it works intuitively. In spite of liking to tinker with my phone, I also want the interface to be consistent and easy to use. Even if I know how to do so, I don't relish the idea of going through several unnecessary steps to change a setting. I appreciate the simplicity of the settings menu in Android. Compared to Windows Mobile or even Blackberry, it is MUCH easier to change settings on Droid. It is also MUCH easier to install applications.

In truth, the Android phones are more like iPhones than any other phones. They really did rip off most of what makes iPhones good, while still retaining the ability to "tinker" and being much more open than Apple phones.

As much of a techie as I am, and as much as I would like to think so, Android phones are not some difficult-to-use techie phone. Heck, this receptionist at my company uses a G1 and she doesn't even know what Linux is. She loves it.

There is no reason Linux cannot be used as the base for a completely intuitively designed phone. The cost of development is much lower than that of a desktop OS and all the associated applications. The kernel (Linux) barely matters at all in the end result. The rest of it has largely been built from scratch. There is very little in the Windows/Linux usability debate that carries over to the Android/iPhone/WinMo/Palm/RIM debate.

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