Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Today Talks All About Google First Phone - Nexus One

Buzz It

No surprise, Google has finally confirmed the Nexus One. It is with 3.7-inch AMOLED display, 1GHz Snapdragon processor, compass, GPS, accelerometer, light and proximity sensor, 5 megapixel camera with LED flash, 3.5mm headphone jack, and a multicolored LED under the trackball. It has 2 mics on the bottom and another on the back, for the purpose of noise cancellation. Nexus One is running the brand new Android 2.1. The phone is already available yesterday with the price $529, shipping to US, UK, Singapore and Hong Kong. Read more for more information and review videos.
The Google Nexus One support page is live now, click here to see the page. If you are not from US, UK, Singapore or Hong Kong, the page will have a message, “Sorry, the Nexus One phone is not available in your country.”. This Nexus One page is to activate your new phone and the details of Nexus One that show how to start with the thing. Below is the screenshot that show the steps of ordering Nexus One.

Today we have some latest review from Engadget, you also can access to the first impressions review in my last post. Latest review has tested the browser speed, hardware like design, internal part, display and camera, and also the software that come with the phone.

Nexus One has ultra-thin body to sleek, curved edges, the phone is absolutely lust-worthy.

Industrial design

- HTC has managed to get the thickness of the phone down to just 11.5mm, and it measures just 59.8mm and 119mm across and up and down.

- On the glass-covered front of the device there are four "hardware" buttons (just touch-sensitive spots on the display) laid out exactly as the Droid's four hard keys: back, menu, home, and search. Clearly this is going to be something of a trend with Google-approved devices.

- Nexus One has a trackball just below those buttons that should feel very familiar to Hero users.

- Along the left side you've got a volume rocker, up top there's a sleep / wake / power button on one end, and a 3.5mm headphone jack on the other, and along the bottom there's a micro-USB port, a mic hole, and three gold dots that look destined for some kind of dock.

- 5 megapixel camera and accompanying LED flash, along with Google's Android mascot holding up a QR code.
- 1GHz Snapdragon CPU from Qualcomm (the same processor powering the HD2)

- 512MB of both RAM and ROM

- The display is an AMOLED, 480 x 800 capacitive touchscreen

- The handset also contains a light sensor, proximity sensor, and accelerometer

- HSPA-capable GSM radio (AWS and euro 2100MHz bands only for 3G -- sorry AT&T users), WiFi, the prerequisite AGPS chip, and a microSD slot (which comes loaded with a 4GB card, but is expandable to 32GB)
In terms of touch sensitivity, the display is as good or better than any Android phone we've used. While the resolution is high (480 x 800), it's missing 54 pixels that we expected given the size of the Droid's screen. It didn't bother us that much, but it's noticeable in certain apps -- Gmail for instance, where you have to scroll further in some menus than you do on the Droid.

The focus of the lens was super speedy, and images came out looking more or less as we'd hoped. The flash felt a bit stark at times, but given its size, we didn't lose too much sleep over it. One place where Google has really made some smart decisions is within the Gallery application. Instead of the drab, flat iterations of Android past, the new version is extremely attractive and user friendly, giving you far more options than before (like a nice pan and scan slideshow) and making browsing photos a much more enjoyable experience. Below is Nexus One camera shots.

Telephony/data/earpiece and speaker
- In terms of earpiece quality and volume, it's certainly on par with its contemporaries, providing a loud, reasonably clean talking experience, though it doesn't touch the Droid in terms of call clarity and evenness.
- The loudspeaker, seemed extremely tinny to our ears, making for a pretty unpleasant companion for conference calls, with the midrange cutting through in a way that could be painful at times.
- As far as connections and 3G pickup, the Nexus fared as well as our iPhone did when traveling.

In 2.1, Google has jettisoned key chunks of the established Android paradigm for how to get around its device. Most noticeably, the company has killed the sliding drawer which used to house all of your application icons -- the tab is replaced with a handy "home" icon which zooms in your icons over top of whatever homescreen you're on. You can scroll up and down through those icons, which is now accompanied by a cute 3D animation where the items slide over the top and bottom edge, like wrapping a piece of paper around the side of a table. It's nice, but not necessarily functional in any way. Google has also added a little bounce to the menu, in keeping with its contemporaries' love of physics.

Now included when the keyboard pops up is an option to use the company's speech-to-text engine, which will (attempt) to translate your words into onscreen text. Our experiments with the technology were marginally successful, but we don't see this being a big part of our communications game until the audio recognition gets a little more robust. It might work for an occasional SMS where use of the Queen's English isn't a priority.

One other thing. As we mentioned in our impressions post, there's no multitouch on the Nexus One. Now, we can live with a browser or Google Maps with no pinch-to-zoom, but not having a hardware keyboard hamstrings this device in other ways. For instance, gaming on the phone is pretty much abysmal save for a few accelerometer-based titles. And some of our favorite software, such as Nesoid (an NES emulator) is a total dead. For a phone which uses touch input as its main vehicle for navigation, relegating that experience to a single digit is really kind of bogus. There were plenty of times when using the Nexus One (and this does happen with other Android devices as well, but it's pronounced here) where we felt not just bummed that you could only use one point of contact, but actually a little angry. Why won't Google open this up? Why have they kept what has become a normal and quite useful manner of interaction away from their devices? Only Eric Schmidt knows for sure. What it made us realize, however, is that an Android phone is really better off with a keyboard, and we were longing to get back to the Droid a number of times while using this device.

Previewed with Flash 10.1 beta
Adobe riding Google's coattails by demoing its Flash beta preview on this so-called superphone. Be sure to check out the animated ad for dog food to fully realize what a future of Flash-capable devices will really look like.

Pricing and availability
By all appearances, the company will have a new phone portal where buyers can pick between an unsubsidized, unlocked Nexus One for $529.99, or sign up for a two-year agreement with T-Mobile and purchase the phone for $179.99. This shouldn't seem strange or exciting to anyone who's recently bought a smartphone -- it's pretty much the lay of the land right now. Previous to the documents we'd seen, the hope was that Google had found some ingenious ad-supported way to get this phone into consumer's hands for a low, seemingly subsidized price but without the shackles of a contract or specific carrier -- but those plans seem have been either invented, or somehow dashed.

Industry politics aside, though, the Nexus One is at its core just another Android smartphone. It's a particularly good one, don't get us wrong -- certainly up there with the best of its breed -- but it's not in any way the Earth-shattering, paradigm-skewing device the media and community cheerleaders have built it up to be. It's a good Android phone, but not the last word -- in fact, if we had to choose between this phone or the Droid right now, we would lean towards the latter. Of course, if Google's goal is to spread Android more wide than deep, maybe this is precisely the right phone at the right time: class-leading processor, vibrant display, sexy shell, and just a sprinkling of geekiness that only Google could pull off this effortlessly.


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