Google Nexus One review: Firstborn

GSMArena team, 26 February 2010.
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Final words

Alright, we’ve no problem saying it. The Google Nexus One is certainly one of the finest pieces of mobile technology we’ve seen recently. Google have managed to outdo the Android crowd, although what’s fair is fair: the MILESTONE is the uncontested leader in the QWERTY-enabled segment.

The political consequences of the Nexus One are certainly the subject of a whole different discussion. The thing is, the ramifications are not as grave as feared at this point. And that’s mostly because the Nexus One fails to sell as well as most of us expected it to when it was first announced.

It’s not the phone’s fault though – from what we saw. The unsatisfactory market performance is perhaps entirely down to the Google marketing. The device has great performance and an attractive price point, but fails to cash in on the initial hype.

Now, that may change as carriers worldwide start to offer it. This is not to say however that the Google Nexus One is the phone to rule them all and end them all. The mobile world simply doesn’t work that way with each and every device having its flaws. With the Nexus One those include imperfect sunlight legibility, unpolished multimedia and confusingly poor response of the capacitive controls below the screen.

And if you thought things will only get better for the Nexus One as it gains popularity, it gets complicated again. The problem is a certain HTC-branded twin with the cheesiest of names. The HTC Desire is just around the corner and it seems fit to elbow the Nexus One out of the spotlight. Adding Flash support and the Sense UI to what is essentially the same hardware might not make all the difference in the world, but makes the Desire a dangerous rival if (and that’s a big IF) the prices are close.

HTC Desire
HTC Desire

If the novelties introduced by Android 2.1 don’t seem all that important to you, waiting for the Sony Ericsson XPERIA X10 might be another viable option. The sleek and powerful handset packs the Timescape and Mediascape UI plugins to make it a pretty attractive package – not to mention the 8 megapixel camera.

Sony Ericsson XPERIA X10
Sony Ericsson XPERIA X10

Those of you on a tighter budget should also check out the HTC Legend and its aluminum unibody. Don’t let the nice design fool you, the Legend is quite the performer as well, even if it can’t match screen resolution of the Nexus One.

HTC Legend
HTC Legend

For some reason, Google don’t seem too motivated to make the Nexus One a huge success. Maybe they decided – right in the middle of the whole thing – that rocking the Open Handset Alliance boat isn’t the price they’re willing to pay to sell a few million Nexus One units. Or maybe Googlers just weren’t up to the task or never had that task in mind – it doesn’t really matter.

What matters is they created a darn fine phone and if you are looking for a top of the line Android handset it is certainly your best option at this point in time.

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