I know technology is big news when my wife texts or calls me about it.
While I knew that the Google Nexus One was being launched today (January 5th, 2010) I saw it on all the usual places (Twitter, cnet, engadget) it never really hit me until my wife texted me:
"iPhone vs super phone by google???"
I live in Las Vegas, and the CES convention is starting in two days. Google decided to get a leg up on the event and launch their biggest gamble in some time early, before the very first CES keynote was started. The gamble could pay off or prove to be just another Google side project.
Take a look at the specs, they are very impressive and listed below and you can see why people are excited.
But has it ever occured to anyone why with the Android OS 2.1 and most powerful hardware ever crammed into a phone that the Nexus One (or is that "NexusOne") may fail?
The old addage KISS comes to mind.
In most cases KISS stands for Keep It Simple Stupid, and if Apple is a little less worried than we may think they ought to be, there may very well be a good reason.
Hint: it's all in the software.
THE APPSTORE VS HARDWARE
When the original iPhone was released, there was no AppStore. The phone launched with almost the same featureset the NexusOne comes with out of the box:
-Full web browser
-Productivity apps (calculator, notepad etc)
-Phone functions (phone, SMS etc)
When the Appstore opened however, the iPhone became an instant all in one super device. It could play games and do so much more. With each version of iPhone (currently 3.1.2) the device keeps getting better, but more importantly the app restrictions apple had in place get looser.
The Nexus One has better hardware out of the box, but hardware alone does not sell the device to consumers, software is what sells. Sony, Nintendo and Microsoft will tell you that.
Even seven months after the release of the considerably more powerful iPhone 3gs, there are literally less than a dozen out of thousands of apps that use the superior graphics tech of the newest idevice. They cater to the masses, the iPhone 2g and 3g consumers.
Why? Because it is about the software!
THE APPSTORE VS GOOGLE
This is not a story of apple vs google as much as it is the AppStore vs google.
If google plans to win, they need to deliver a simple way for developers to quickly port over apps already on the apple AppStore to the android store. The lack of a multitouch screen on the Nexus One ensures that direct ports of most full fledged action and sports games (some of the the most profitable on the AppStore) will be less than simple.
If anyone can pull it off, it is google. The question remains how they market the new "superphone."
The Droid tried it's best to point out how it was technically much more powerful than the iPhone but failed to sell and be the true "iPhone killer" that it's backers hoped.
In fact, it may be better to market the Nexus One as "Nexus does what iPhone does... But slightly faster."
Let the battle begin!
Nexus One vs. Droid vs. iPhone
(click to enlarge)