I’ve spent the past couple of days desperately trying to puzzle out the purpose behind Google’s newly announced Nexus 5X and 6P smartphones. Unlike predecessors such as the Nexus One and Nexus 5, these phones don’t have a clear reason for being, and are not in themselves terribly unique. That’s led me (and others) to question Google’s overall aim with the Nexus line of pure Android smartphones, and I think I’ve finally arrived at an answer. The Nexus program is not so much about carrier independence or purity of Android design as it is about presenting Google in an overwhelmingly positive light. In other words, Google, the ultimate ad seller, sells Nexus phones as ads for itself.
This article feels a bit like a trainwreck to me. It just doesn’t make any sense. Of course Nexus devices are built specifically to put Android and Google’s services on a pedestal – has anyone ever claimed otherwise? Has anyone ever seen them as anything but? The tone of the article also tries to somehow posit this as a negative thing, which I don’t understand either. Some of the very best Android phones of all time have been Nexus phones, so aren’t they a great thing for us consumers? What’s the problem here?
Making Android profitable for Android phone makers is one of the great challenges of our time. We’re all better off when we buy things from sustainable companies that we know will still be around when we have an issue months or years down the line. I wish Google would recognize that and try to do more to support Android as a whole rather than just its own good name. Nexus devices have in the past and can still serve nobler purposes than just making Google look good.
No, it’s not. The goal of Android is to reach as many people as possible, and do so in a way that benefits us as consumers as much as possible. Expensive Android devices with 50% profit margins don’t benefit us at all – they just allow major corporations to suck money out the economy and shadily funnel it to foreign tax havens. We benefit from access to high-quality phones at reasonable prices running Android-proper – and anything that pushes the Samsungs and HTCs of this world to do so is a huge win for consumers.
I’ve only ever owned Google’s Nexus phones, starting with the Nexus One. I like them because they’re unlocked and run pure unadulterated Android. They also receive updates directly from Google which means they’re always running the latest version of Android. Let’s face it, Google is an ad company. I think anyone who uses Android inherently knows that. I would much rather pay more at the outset for an authentic Android phone with software that’s maintained by Google than another device whose updates are at the mercy of carriers and device makers whose ulterior motives move them to modify Android to the point where their versions are often several times larger in terms of MB than pure Android due to all the baked in bloatware and which make them harder to update due to carrier and phone maker’s lack of resources leaving such phones abandoned after a certain period of time. As a Nexus 5 owner due for an upgrade, I’m anxiously awaiting my shiny new Nexus 6P and everything it entails.
it’s an ad phone, no point in saying android.
it’s amazing that the linux crowd that created android has stuck around through google ownership. there’s nothing at all “open” about google’s constant selling of your online doings for profit.