It is about to get real interesting in the mobile market. Google’s Nexus One (manufactured by HTC) is supposedly going to be on sale January 5th, 2010 at 9AM. The phone will be sold for $180 with a 2 year T-Mobile contract or $530 for a completely unlocked phone. The Nexus One is only the beginning of this Android revolution – expect to see many more Android based phones in 2010.
Google has been working with Verizon to bring Android phones to the Verizon network, the first of which was the Motorola Droid and HTC Eris, but there are definitely more to come (aside from the unlocked Nexus One). The partnerships Google is making with T-Mobile, Verizon, etc (and the fact it seems they are opening up their phones) will be a major advantage for them competing in the mobile market. Google is playing it smart against Apple’s iPhone – they aren’t building an iPhone Killer, they are working to build iPhone Killers.
Let’s be real here. All of these companies have been working to “kill” the iPhone and thus far, they have all failed. Obviously, that approach isn’t going to work. I think Google realizes this. If you notice their approach into the market, they have slowly positioned themselves and partnered with manufactures to develop several Android-based phones.
The Nexus One will be their most impressive phone to date, but it’s not going to be what Google relies on forever. Google is evolving the platform and their phones and there will be a point where you will have several high-end Android phones available to you on any carrier whether it be because your carrier has the phone or you bought the unlocked version. Meanwhile, Apple is stuck with one phone (granted it’s a very nice phone and I own one), but we’re seeing here could be the PC vs Mac debacle all over. However, this time we are in the mobile market and it’s Google who is taking the Microsoft approach by providing the software to hardware manufactures.
How will this turn out? It’s hard to tell, but if history is any indicator, it will most likely be similar to the way PC vs Mac has turned out. Lately, it seems Apple is ahead in terms of sales in that race. Will Google fall into the same trap Microsoft did by not building the device themselves? I don’t know, but, when Microsoft took care of manufacturing for the XBOX and the software that runs on it, it has turned out pretty well. When Apple takes care of the manufacturing and the software it seems to work out pretty well. Time will tell.