Linked by snydeq on Wed 6th Jan 2010 20:08 UTC
Google InfoWorld's Galen Gruman writes that the main potential game-changing attribute of the Nexus One - that Google is selling the device direct - does nothing to move the industry past carrier lock-in. "At first, I wanted to credit Google for making a tentative step in the direction of smartphone freedom. But that step is so tentative and ineffectual that frankly I think it's a cynical fig leaf covering the usual practices," Gruman writes. At issue is a political battle regarding walled gardens in the U.S. cellular market, a fight that will take years to result in any true consumer freedom. "The only way we'll ever get the ability to choose a smartphone and carrier independently is for the platform providers that count - Apple, Google, and RIM - to first develop only multiband 'world' smartphones and then refuse to sell their devices (or in Google's case, use its Android license to forbid the sale of devices) to carriers that block or interfere with device portability."
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The title says it all...
by Tuishimi on Wed 6th Jan 2010 20:11 UTC
Tuishimi
Member since:
2005-07-06

Heh. ;)

As far as lock in, all you need is your favorite sim.

Reply Score: 2

RE: The title says it all...
by 4nntt on Wed 6th Jan 2010 20:46 UTC in reply to "The title says it all..."
4nntt Member since:
2009-02-12

There's only 4 carriers left here in the United States.

Verizon and Sprint are both CDMA and do not use SIM cards.

T-Mobile and AT&T are both GSM, but AT&T uses frequencies not supported by the Nexus One.

So, now you have two choices. Buy the GSM version now, which locks you into T-Mobile only here but works when you travel overseas, or wait until spring to get the Verizon version, which might be portable to Sprint but as a CDMA phone won't work anywhere else in the world.

Factor in that Verizon is really the only one with decent coverage, and it becomes a difficult choice. Definitely not an open market where you can take your phone to any carrier.

Reply Score: 2

RE: The title says it all...
by FellowConspirator on Wed 6th Jan 2010 20:55 UTC in reply to "The title says it all..."
FellowConspirator Member since:
2007-12-13

As far as lock in, all you need is your favorite sim.


That would be great if it were true. The lock is in the firmware of the device, not (only) the SIM. You can't take a locked AT&T phone, exchange the SIM with a T-mobile one and have it work without AT&T first releasing the lock on the phone (which they will do if your contract term is expired, but not before).

The carrier's position is that without such a feature on the phone, a customer could purchase a $600-$700 phone at $199 (with a 2-year contract that pays off the subsidy), and simply drop the service and move to another carrier without paying. Of course, they can do that now too (but they need to get another phone). Of course, try to buy from them an unlocked phone at full-price and they will balk AND not give you a lower rate (you wouldn't be paying the subsidy, after all).

What the market (in the US) needs to move to is a model that's more open. All the vendor phones should be multiband/multinetwork so they can be sold to work for any carrier. Carriers should be required to separate out the charges for the phone and the service, and provide the subsidies as an optional loan / installment payment. You would then be able to walk into "Bob's Phone-A-Rama" and have your pick of any phone and know exactly how much the hardware's going to set you back. You could buy it on your credit-card, lay-away, or in installments like any other purchase. Then, once you've got your phone, you call / visit a carrier kiosk to sign up for service, just provide your IMEI and SIM numbers and billing information. If your carrier jacks up prices, you can walk that same day to a different carrier and transfer.

That's how it should work.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: The title says it all...
by darknexus on Wed 6th Jan 2010 21:27 UTC in reply to "RE: The title says it all..."
darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

Better idea: Screw this carrier model and just put up Wifi everywhere. Then you pick your choice of VOIP provider (Skype, SipPhone, etc) and you can go anywhere and use it anywhere there is Wifi. Obviously there would have to be an additional location-based part added to facilitate 911, but that's not exactly difficult. The problem, in addition to locking, is that carriers here in the states have their regions where they're good and regions where they're bad, and no carrier you go with is going to cover everywhere. T-Mobile is really good in the west while AT&T and Verizon are all over the east, with Sprint having a good spot in San Francisco and a few other places. If you get T-mobile and have to go to the eastern U.S, e.g. Ohio or Pennsylvania, you're screwed. If you get AT&T and have to go to a remote part of Arizona, you're screwed. What we need is nation-wide Wifi plus VOIP. Of course, the carriers'll never let that happen, but I can dream can't I?

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: The title says it all...
by Tuishimi on Thu 7th Jan 2010 00:00 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: The title says it all..."
Tuishimi Member since:
2005-07-06

No, you can't dream those dreams. They are anti-capitalist. ;) Next you'll want peace on Earth and everyone fed and clothed.

Reply Score: 4

RE[4]: The title says it all...
by Laurence on Thu 7th Jan 2010 10:27 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: The title says it all..."
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

No, you can't dream those dreams. They are anti-capitalist. ;)


Not necessarily.
VoIP providers could start charging for WiFi calls (they'd have to if just to maintain the WiFi infrastructure and pay for the bandwidth) and calls to non-VoIP numbers such as home land lines, offices and call centres would still cost money.

There is definitely a potential industry there but it would require such a drastic change in infrastructure, user handsets and business models that I can't see it ever being pushed forward.

Reply Score: 2

computeruser Member since:
2009-07-21

802.11 isn't very good for wide area cellular networks. It uses too much power while having a short range, isn't good at handoffs, has limited non-overlapping channels, etc. Fixing 802.11 to solve these issues would result in a standard that looks very much like a modern cellular network or perhaps a near-future one (LTE).

Plus, 802.11 networks cost money - access points, wiring, installation, electricity, and network connectivity.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: The title says it all...
by darknexus on Thu 7th Jan 2010 19:41 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: The title says it all..."
darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

Actually, I was using Wifi as a generic term, not specifically meaning 802.11. My fault there, but by the time I realized my error I couldn't edit. Anyway, we wouldn't necessarily need to change network types but we would have to ditch the current carrier-based model, settle on which protocol to use, and get it going. The carriers should be reduced to providing call services, not the infrastructure as they've proven that, at least here, they cannot provide all-around coverage despite their claims to the contrary. Like I said, a guy can dream.

Reply Score: 3

computeruser Member since:
2009-07-21

I've never heard wifi used to talk about anything other than 802.11.

Someone has to provide centralized network infrastructure in order to provide the quality of service of a modern cellular network. An organization with the ability and funding to do this would resemble a modern cellular provider without the telephone service part.

Reply Score: 1

RE[6]: The title says it all...
by dnstest on Fri 8th Jan 2010 00:24 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: The title says it all..."
dnstest Member since:
2006-06-11

Correct, if you do a simple Wikipedia search you will find this:
"Wi-Fi is often used as a synonym for IEEE 802.11 technology"

Wi-Fi is a certification that a device conforms to one of the 802.11 standards.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: The title says it all...
by doctor on Thu 7th Jan 2010 04:51 UTC in reply to "RE: The title says it all..."
doctor Member since:
2009-11-07

The carrier's position is that without such a feature on the phone, a customer could purchase a $600-$700 phone at $199 (with a 2-year contract that pays off the subsidy), and simply drop the service and move to another carrier without paying.


I don't see why this is a problem, and it's exactly how it works in Australia. The carrier won't lose money out of you doing that, because dropping their service doesn't magically mean you can breach the contract and not pay the the rest of the money, which is going to be more then the difference in phone cost. Carriers will agree to break contract with you for a fee somewhere between the remaining cost difference and the full amount, so they make a small amount from you breaking contract.

Maybe there's something (else) weird about the US and phone services, but I don't see how you could just break your contract with no penalty, and lead to a loss of money for the carrier.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: The title says it all...
by Ikshaar on Thu 7th Jan 2010 16:09 UTC in reply to "RE: The title says it all..."
Ikshaar Member since:
2005-07-14

That would be great if it were true. The lock is in the firmware of the device, not (only) the SIM. You can't take a locked AT&T phone, exchange the SIM with a T-mobile one and have it work without AT&T first releasing the lock on the phone (which they will do if your contract term is expired, but not before).

May be ATnT but I told T-mo I was going abroad and they unlocked my G1 phone, well before end of my contract... i think you just cannot do it within 90 days of purchase.

Frequencies wise, the problem is only true for 3G, a T-mo GSM phone would work on ATnT just not the 3G part (which is a big deal for smartphone - but just to be precise).

Being on T-mo here, and traveling to Europe, Nexus is all I need. True it is a bit expensive, but I really don't agree that Google "blew" it because their first iteration is not the perfect world phone...

Reply Score: 1

dragos.pop Member since:
2010-01-08

So nice the "free" american cellphone market. In Europe it is much batter:
Almost all networks are GSM900, a few are GSM1800 or pure 3G - so all 3G phones work anywhere (There are some CDMA networks, but that is an exception).
When you buy any phone the options are:
- Free market - full price
- Software lockedin, a little cheaper (not worth it)
- Software lockedin + prolong your contract/sign a new contract, can be a lot cheapper, based on your montly plan and how long you prolong your contract or special offers.

If you don't pay:
- legal actions will be taken
- huge panalisations wil be imposed if you ever get to the same network
They don't care what YOU do with YOUR PHONE

Reply Score: 1

Baby steps and bad press
by Eddyspeeder on Wed 6th Jan 2010 20:49 UTC
Eddyspeeder
Member since:
2006-05-10

The author remarks that Google appears to be wanting to change the smartphone market by baby steps. My view; Google use the baby step strategy on all fronts. They show off new technology while it is still work-in-progress; we get used to the changes, and once it's crystallized we don't consider it a revolution in it's own right. That's just the way the world works today.

As for the Nexus One; it actually received bad press on the news in the Netherlands, as they remarked Google collects your usage data to adapt their advertisement services. That's a pretty unfortunate thing to be said about your product in such a highly privacy-concerned country.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Baby steps and bad press
by kragil on Wed 6th Jan 2010 21:07 UTC in reply to "Baby steps and bad press"
kragil Member since:
2006-01-04

Agreed, but at the end of the day a good product from a great brand will win.

Over here in Germany everyone says "Google is evil, big brother" bla , BUT Google has like 90+ % marketshare in search.

I hear so many people saying "Gmail reads your email!!" Well, Googles server read your email and analyse them and A LOT of servers read your email. If you don't want your email to be read by others don't send any or use strong encrption.

Those same people usally use their credit card with iTunes and send all their pirated MP3 to Apple without the slightest worry.

I think Google is a great company, way better than all the old IT big boys.

Reply Score: 7

RE[2]: Baby steps and bad press
by Laurence on Thu 7th Jan 2010 10:38 UTC in reply to "RE: Baby steps and bad press"
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

Agreed, but at the end of the day a good product from a great brand will win.

Over here in Germany everyone says "Google is evil, big brother" bla , BUT Google has like 90+ % marketshare in search.

I hear so many people saying "Gmail reads your email!!" Well, Googles server read your email and analyse them and A LOT of servers read your email. If you don't want your email to be read by others don't send any or use strong encrption.

Those same people usally use their credit card with iTunes and send all their pirated MP3 to Apple without the slightest worry.

I think Google is a great company, way better than all the old IT big boys.


I agree to a degree.

People are right to be wary. Particularly when it's their identity at risk.
However one reason I've always defended Google over many of the other old IT big boys is because Google are proactive in reinvesting their technologies into the industry rather than hoarding.
They're also not so hell bent on locking people into their technologies (as advertising is their revenue, they don't care what platforms and software you run - just so long as you're using their ads)

For me at the moment ,Google is the lesser of the evils between (for example) Apple and MS. As things change, my allegiances might change too.

I hear so many people saying "Gmail reads your email!!" Well, Googles server read your email and analyse them and A LOT of servers read your email. If you don't want your email to be read by others don't send any or use strong encrption.


Or run your own mail server.... :p

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Baby steps and bad press
by Eddyspeeder on Thu 7th Jan 2010 16:24 UTC in reply to "RE: Baby steps and bad press"
Eddyspeeder Member since:
2006-05-10

Haha I get that "Google reads [Gmail/Docs/Waves]" thing all the time. Actually I don't have much to hide, but with tens of millions of other users chances are slim a physical person actually reads my writings. They may at best be used to inform AdSense what advertisement might be appropriate.

Reply Score: 1

dragos.pop Member since:
2010-01-08

Google personal does not read anything.
Your mail/search... is:
- processed by servers for adsense, personalisation of search resolts...
- handed to authority when legal investigation requires it.
So if your biggest crime is pirating mp3 or movies, no person will read your email. If you are acused of doing an important crime, this is just a method of investigation, just like listen to your phones, taking your phone log, searchin your house... All electronic comunication can (and IS) recorded, processed ... and used for legal reasons.
If your email would not be processed by google servers, not only that you cannot have antispam, but it cannot be transmited, saved, or... email.

Reply Score: 1

They're competing with the iphone
by nt_jerkface on Wed 6th Jan 2010 21:17 UTC
nt_jerkface
Member since:
2009-08-26

And by partnering with Verizon and building around a single band they can bring the cost down.

But according to some self-righteous geek they have blown it by not catering to his desire for a multi-band phone.

Reply Score: 1

kragil Member since:
2006-01-04

Yeah, this article is pretty pointless.

Everyone wanted a nearly free phone that works on all networks and everything should have been sponsored by Google.

Well, Google just wants higher profile phones that get more attention. HTCs brand is very weak, Google is .. the biggest? There is a clear synergy there.

Google can now release a new Google Phone with every Android release, maybe 3 or 4 times a years.

That is _a_lot_ of free marketing and hype.

Reply Score: 2

Competition
by flanque on Wed 6th Jan 2010 21:41 UTC
flanque
Member since:
2005-12-15

A new strong player in the market makes for competition which is great for us all.

Maybe, finally, Apple will fix the problems with the iPhone...

Reply Score: 2

Actually you're missing it!
by vreporter on Wed 6th Jan 2010 22:44 UTC
vreporter
Member since:
2010-01-06

Google has no interest in addressing the current cellphone carrier strategy of the dark ages as Apple did. Go read up on something called "Whitespaces" and maybe you will see the light. The US is one of the most antiquated communications environments in the world. Google is way ahead of bothering with that. This is NOT an iPhone killer even though it may end up looking like one. Go fish!

Reply Score: 1

RE: Actually you're missing it!
by kaiwai on Thu 7th Jan 2010 00:15 UTC in reply to "Actually you're missing it!"
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

Google has no interest in addressing the current cellphone carrier strategy of the dark ages as Apple did. Go read up on something called "Whitespaces" and maybe you will see the light. The US is one of the most antiquated communications environments in the world. Google is way ahead of bothering with that. This is NOT an iPhone killer even though it may end up looking like one. Go fish!


Agreed! I always thought New Zealand was backwards and antiquated but Jesus H Christ - come on, a country with 2 times the GDP per capita of New Zealand and has a mobile phone network of a third world country. Hell, I'm sure there are third world countries who look at the American mobile phone network and can't help but laugh until their sides hurt.

What is even more pathetic is this idea that both the sender AND the receiver are charged for calls and text messages- what the f*ck is up with that? who the hell started such a stupid screwed up system like that? If I ever did move to the US the one thing I wouldn't be getting is a mobile phone if I am forced to pay for every jack ass who sends me a text message or rings me up! its as pathetic as in Australia where one pays something like a 17cent charge everyone one makes a local call!

Reply Score: 3

Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

and has a mobile phone network of a third world country.


Now, that is just not true. Most third world countries have more advanced and more free mobile networks than the U.S.

What is even more pathetic is this idea that both the sender AND the receiver are charged for calls and text messages- what the f*ck is up with that?


Hold on, wait. Rewind a bit.
BOTH get charged? So if someone I don't like send my hundreds of messages I get to pay? For fscking real?
Surely you must be making that up cuz I find it astonishing that something that retarded could ever be put into practice.

Reply Score: 2

Drumhellar Member since:
2005-07-12

BOTH get charged? So if someone I don't like send my hundreds of messages I get to pay? For fscking real?
Surely you must be making that up cuz I find it astonishing that something that retarded could ever be put into practice.


Depends your carrier and your plan, but, yeah, that happens.

Reply Score: 3

nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

who the hell started such a stupid screwed up system like that? If I ever did move to the US the one thing I wouldn't be getting is a mobile phone if I am forced to pay for every jack ass who sends me a text message or rings me up!


The system comes from ye old cellular network in the 80's when wireless data transmission was very expensive so they charged whenever the cell was in use.

The US system has been more of an innovative wild west while other countries have been able to design their systems around our experiences.

You only get screwed if you have a plan that isn't designed around your habits. For example send a thousand texts without getting the $5 a month unlimited texting.

As a percentage of living costs the cell phone bill isn't much. Most of the day labor Mexicans have cell phones.

Reply Score: 1

arpan Member since:
2006-07-30

Yeah, but what if that other guys gets the unlimited text messaging and sends you a thousand texts.

Reply Score: 1

nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

Yeah, but what if that other guys gets the unlimited text messaging and sends you a thousand texts.


Well if it is your friend then you need to tell him that you are too cheap to get the $5 a month account upgrade.

If someone you don't know keeps sending you unwanted texts then that is harassment and you can have the number blocked and the charges removed.

What most people don't realize is that charges from excessive usage are negotiable. The cell phone companies are afraid of losing you as a customer since people in the US typically sign 2 year contracts and rarely switch companies.

There's also prepaid phones if you don't want to sign a contact. They get pretty cheap which is why you see elementary school kids with them. The phone price is subsidized with the expectation that you will buy more minutes. To give you an idea of how cheap they get I saw a $30 new model nokia at the grocery store that came with 1000 minutes.

Edited 2010-01-08 19:54 UTC

Reply Score: 2

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

Text is bad.. data is even worse. Exactly what justifies $2.00 per meg of transfer? Don't pay 40$ a month for the data plan and your 50 meg of iPhone usage will be a 100$ extra on next month's bill.. and that's if your lucky enough to notice that it's using the cell towers instead of local wifi as desired.

Let's all say it together:

"What the market - because alone, none of us is as stupid as we are together - will bare."

(what ever happened to fair markup.)

Reply Score: 2

nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

Text is bad.. data is even worse. Exactly what justifies $2.00 per meg of transfer? Don't pay 40$ a month for the data plan and your 50 meg of iPhone usage will be a 100$ extra on next month's bill.. and that's if your lucky enough to notice that it's using the cell towers instead of local wifi as desired.


Isn't the data plan required now? I'm guessing they got too many complaints with that.

Not that I want to diminish your complaint any. I once downloaded peggle for a cell phone and while the game was $7 the transfer fee was $8. It didn't exactly inspire me to buy more games.

Edited 2010-01-08 20:00 UTC

Reply Score: 2

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

I think it's required also. If you buy the phone from Rogers, they insist on the data plan from what I understand. At 40$ that's a second home internet connection per month which is outrageous unless I'm going to be using the phone as a wireless modem for my notebook.

In this case, the phone was a gift to a family member so we just swapped sim cards and the number transfered over. This meant it became active under the existing plan which was not meant to have data.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Actually you're missing it!
by erak on Sun 10th Jan 2010 23:01 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Actually you're missing it!"
erak Member since:
2006-09-24

The US system has been more of an innovative wild west while other countries have been able to design their systems around our experiences.

Any sources on that?

AFAIK, the most widely spread standard, GSM, was developed in Europe. And 3G was first used in Japan.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Actually you're missing it!
by bousozoku on Thu 7th Jan 2010 17:28 UTC in reply to "Actually you're missing it!"
bousozoku Member since:
2006-01-23

Google has no interest in addressing the current cellphone carrier strategy of the dark ages as Apple did. Go read up on something called "Whitespaces" and maybe you will see the light. The US is one of the most antiquated communications environments in the world. Google is way ahead of bothering with that. This is NOT an iPhone killer even though it may end up looking like one. Go fish!


It's tough to be first. It's antiquated because of very early progress and that it's so expensive to replace equipment over such a vast nation. Tell me that roughly 4000 km east to west is not huge.

Google should have gone with one of Qualcomm's new chipsets that has both GSM and CDMA and related technologies as part of the phone to make sure the phone would work everywhere. That is, if they were really expecting to sell many.

I suspect the lack of AT&T-compatible 3G frequencies had to do with a squabble, rather than anything else.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Actually you're missing it!
by ba1l on Thu 7th Jan 2010 18:05 UTC in reply to "RE: Actually you're missing it!"
ba1l Member since:
2007-09-08

It's tough to be first. It's antiquated because of very early progress and that it's so expensive to replace equipment over such a vast nation. Tell me that roughly 4000 km east to west is not huge.


We have the same excuse over here in Australia. Our mobile phone networks still suck less than the US ones.

Reply Score: 4

nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

"It's tough to be first. It's antiquated because of very early progress and that it's so expensive to replace equipment over such a vast nation. Tell me that roughly 4000 km east to west is not huge.


We have the same excuse over here in Australia. Our mobile phone networks still suck less than the US ones.
"

That's not a fair comparison because Australia's population is mostly clustered around its eastern coast. America has a ton of people living in the boons and in small towns. Population density is only part of the equation.

Reply Score: 2

Ikshaar Member since:
2005-07-14

I suspect the lack of AT&T-compatible 3G frequencies had to do with a squabble, rather than anything else.

Mostly becuase the 850/1900 3G band of AT&T is only use in the Americas and by few operators. Almost all Europe/Asia/Africa is 2100. So this phone will work wonders in many countries, just not in the fragmented market that is US.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_UMTS_networks

Edited 2010-01-07 21:43 UTC

Reply Score: 1

nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26


I suspect the lack of AT&T-compatible 3G frequencies had to do with a squabble, rather than anything else.


I agree that it likely isn't technical.

Verizon wants a competitor to the iphone and Google probably took advantage of this and made a deal with them to help bring the cost down.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by Luminair
by Luminair on Wed 6th Jan 2010 22:50 UTC
Luminair
Member since:
2007-03-30

google hasn't blown anything, they continue to do everything right, which is more than you can say about any other comparable company.

nexus one is the second rain drop of a coming storm.

Edited 2010-01-06 22:50 UTC

Reply Score: 4

The true purpose of the Nexus One
by darkstego on Wed 6th Jan 2010 23:19 UTC
darkstego
Member since:
2007-10-26

Once I read sensationalism filled article titles like that it really turns me off from reading the entire article. But since I was going to comment I felt obligated to reading the entire article anyway.

The complaint that the current Nexus One isn't a "world phone" just doesn't hold any water. The Nexus one supports all the GSM bands meaning it can be used as a 2G phone with any GSM carrier. Existing AT&T customers can use it as a 2G phone with wifi. It might not be perfect, but I am sure that quite a few will be satisfied with this solution, especially in areas with poor 3G coverage anyway. It supports 3 of the 5 3G bands allowing it to be used nearly everywhere in the world (AT&T and Rogers being the exception rather than the rule). So even though I don't live in the US, I placed my order for the Nexus One and will soon be rocking my phone in Saudi Arabia.

Now I agree the US cellphone market if fundamentally flawed. I could see it even back 15 years when I would visit the states, my cellphone would be years ahead of anything offered in the market. This was because carriers where selling the service and making the phone the commodity. It is the reverse almost everywhere else in the world. Phones are were you can innovate and keep your margins, while service providers have to compete mainly on the basis of price.

The main problem with the US model of treating the phone as a commodity is that there is no real incentive for phone innovation. This does not suit Google who wants everyone to be connected to the web. Moving as many people to web enabled smart phones is what Google wants. While a company like Apple, does not care as much about market penetration as much as they do about securing the healthy revenue stream they get from AT&T. Even if that means expanding at a slower rate.

What is unique about the Nexus One isn't the phone itself. At its heart it is just the HTC snapdragon phone everyone was expecting this year. What sets this phone apart is how Google are promoting and selling it. This phone isn't controlled by carriers like the T-Mobile G-1 or the Verizon Droid. This is an unlocked phone sold by Google. This is huge paradigm shift. This allows the seller, in this case Google, to offer the phone unlocked or subsidized from different carriers for their customer. Suddenly the user is the customer of the Google and not any particular carrier. The fact that the only carrier that provides subsidies today is T-Mobile is unimportant, because pretty soon others will follow suit.

Looking at the future we see why the Nexus One is so important. This will not be remembered as Google's grand entrance into mobile hardware market. Google don't care much for selling phones. The significance of this phone will be for what it opens up for other manufacturers. Suddenly companies like Motorolla, Samsung and SE can start offering their phones in a similar fashion. Either as unlocked version without a contract, or subsidized by the carrier of your choice. Suddenly mobile phone users in the US will have the freedom that has been so long overdue.

The only real complaint is that Google haven't been overly aggressive. But Google have never been the confrontational type. The reason they don't enable multi-touch is because they they don't want to ruffle Apple's patent-loving feathers, even though if they wanted to, they could probably get past Apple's flimsy multi-touch patents. They didn't put up much of a fight when Apple crippled the Google apps for the iphone, from Google Voice to gtalk. Getting into legal fisticuffs with competitors isn't Google's strategy. They know that slow and steady wins the race. So as long as they are moving in the right direction then I don't see much of a reason to complain.

Reply Score: 5

Budd Member since:
2005-07-08

Which part from the article you didn't understood? The Nexus bought from T-Mobile can't be used in Vodafone network. The lock is not only in the sim but also in the firmware. In my book is not 100% unlocked. Unless you plan to stick with the same provider for a long time.

Reply Score: 2

MrWeeble Member since:
2007-04-18

So what?

You make your choice; do you want to pay a significant deal less in order to get a phone that has to be used on a particular network; or do you pay full price to be able to use it on any network?

Reply Score: 1

Budd Member since:
2005-07-08

FTFA :
The truth is even if you buy an "unlocked" Nexus One from Google and pay full price ($529), you can't use it with any carrier. It works just with T-Mobile. Later this year Google will have separate versions for Verizon Wireless and -- for the United Kingdom, Singapore, and Hong Kong -- Vodafone. Other carriers would have to agree to let you use a Nexus One on their networks.
There's no unlocked phone.There never was.Unless you stick with,say,Vodafone until you're bored of your Nexus.If,say,Orange have a better deal then bad luck...

Reply Score: 2

leepa Member since:
2010-01-07

The phone works fine unlocked in the UK on all networks - the story was ill-researched as proven by The Register in it's post clarifying the issue as well. If the author at Infoworld had bothered to read the FAQ @ Google, he'd of known all the facts too.

Reply Score: 3

Budd Member since:
2005-07-08

In this case,bye bye iPhone. It's not a big deal in Europe where the market is very divided with Nokia still on top somehow, but in America,oh boy!

Reply Score: 2

mat69 Member since:
2006-03-29

Reading your post taking a shot at the US cellphone market I was tempted to look at the AT&T prices and heck paying 39.99 USD for 450 minutes and free calling to other members of the AT&T network (or 1350 minutes for 79.99 USD) sucks.

Here I have to pay 14.50 EUR (= 20.75 USD, though companies often use a 1:1 ratio ...) for 1100 minutes + a new phone and that provider is in general the most expensive here...
And my personal rate are 300 minutes + a new phone for 5 euros (=7.1 USD).

I have the feeling you (US Americans) are being ripped off.

Reply Score: 2

nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

Reading your post taking a shot at the US cellphone market I was tempted to look at the AT&T prices and heck paying 39.99 USD for 450 minutes and free calling to other members of the AT&T network (or 1350 minutes for 79.99 USD) sucks.


Ok but you're not pointing out that you get 5000 nights and weekend minutes with the $40 plan. You get unlimited nights and weekends with the $60 and up plans. You also get rollover minutes and family plans can really bring down the costs.

Is it a rip? Well compared to the price of a land line it isn't that bad considering that you get much more functionality. If you want to see a rip-off then read about our cable tv prices. Our bill was about $160 last month for ~80 channels and 1.5 Mbps internet. Oh but it comes with a "free" land line that we never use. Gee thanks.

Though I would support increased regulation of the cable companies it is only a matter of time before set-top boxes and netflix enabled devices get cheap and force cable companies to sell movies and channels individually and not as part of some mega package that no one wants.

Reply Score: 2

nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

The main problem with the US model of treating the phone as a commodity is that there is no real incentive for phone innovation.


What are you talking about? Every year we get new phones with more features and better functionality. The most innovative phone was developed in the US.

The heavy subsidies make basic phones free but they also allow smart phones to be marketed to a wider audience. Most wealthy people I know wouldn't even buy a $500 phone. I would actually suspect that cutting a $500 smartphone to $250 would result in at least a 5 fold increase in sales. Americans are known to be finicky when it comes to purchasing electronic devices that cost over $300. The vast majority will wait for the price to come down or buy something cheaper.

Reply Score: 2

darkstego Member since:
2007-10-26

I was talking about the pre-iPhone era. Phones being sold in the US were archiac in comparison to the rest of the world. In the US carriers would dictate to the manufacturers what features would be on the phone. Whereas elsewhere in the world phone manufacturers would provide many different phones with different feature sets and let the customer decide. Before the iPhone carriers weren't all that convinced that people wanted phones with tons of features so they simply didn't provide them.

As an example, push emails on phones in the US seem to have only come up with the introduction of Blackberrys. While at the same time many of the mid to high end phones being sold here had email and push email capabilities. In Japan nearly all phones supported emails for many years.

I was just trying to point out that if the market only sold phones through carriers then they would dictate what the phone market would look like. Since they make money off the service and the handsets are just something they would subsidies, then they would like the handsets to be as cheap as possible. This has changed now with the iPhone. So while the iPhone basicly brought about the whole smartphone market in the US, the rest of the world already had a wide selection of smartphones to choose from. Granted they weren't as polished as the iPhone, but at least the market had choices.

Reply Score: 1

Stopped reading once I got to Infoworld.
by rstat1 on Thu 7th Jan 2010 21:33 UTC
rstat1
Member since:
2009-12-12

If any site was going to post an article bashing something, its gonna be infoworld.

Reply Score: 1