Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 6th Nov 2013 09:01 UTC

Dieter Bohn, for The Verge:

So for a long time now, we've found ourselves asking the two questions again and again: what exactly is Google trying to accomplish with the Nexus program and what's the strategy with these Android updates? We sat down with three of the four main leaders of the Android team to ask those questions yet again. "Nexus stands for high specs at a really fair price," says Hiroshi Lockheimer, vice president of engineering for Android. "The other thing is the updates come directly from Google. Those are the attributes of Nexus that I think people have really enjoyed and we're not changing that strategy."

Yet while Google's answers to these two questions have been remarkably consistent over the past couple of years (and remains consistent today), the Nexus 5 and KitKat themselves seem to give us a different answer than their predecessors. The hardware and the software tell a more ambitious story: older Nexus devices were Android phones, but the Nexus 5 is the first true Google phone.

Something is happening in the Android world.

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Haven you ever met somebody who bought a specific smartphone, tablet or laptop because of "vendor-added quality software"?

The techies I know tend to prefer the "barebones" versions, whereas regular users decide based on price or "oh it's so pretty". Never heard any praise the quality-added crapware, while several have said they disliked it.

Yes: 90% of iOS users did choose this platform for the OS, the apps, the ecosystem and not because iPhones are cheap or the hardware is pretty.

I guess 90% of WP users also did choose it because of the OS.

And I also know people choosing an Android smartphone which price fit their budget over another because of the UI, thus the skin or the "ecosystem" (e.g. Samsung supposed integration between their smart phones and their SmartTV).

Obviously the price is a key factor, but the point is that users have to choose a brand over another for a given budget.

And techies did choose a Nexus over another Android smartphone because of the stock Android, not because the hardware is better than other Android smartphones.

So yes, most users did choose their smartphone in a given budget range based on the OS, software and ecosystem, not the hardware, because hardware is almost always very good.

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