Apparently, Google has finally realized that selling the Nexus One solely through their website was a bad idea. Google on the weekend announce that they will stop selling the Nexus One through their website and will instead attempt to partner with other carriers in order to sell their phone.
I think that in many ways this is a real win for consumers. Although in many ways to buy the phone out right was better for consumers overall, even though there were issues created by it. Google initially was not supplying customer support for any of its customers and it took sometime before they finally gave in and offered support. Also, for those of use that live outside the US, Google deciding to sell their own phone meant that we had to pay high shipping costs, as well as, taxes and duty on the phone which, at least in Canada, could add another $100 to the cost of the phone after everything was said and done.
But one thing that disturbs me is the assertion that Google’s failure to sell the Nexus One shows that having people buy their phone out right couldn’t work. In Ars Technica’s article, the writer, Peter Bright, seem to call this a failure for companies trying to sell their own phones and I have to strongly disagree. I think that selling phones out right to consumers could work; the problem is the resources behind selling these phones. Google had zero advertising for the Nexus One and so no one even knew about the device outside of the geek and phone enthusiast crowd. If Google put more into selling the phone I think they could have sold more phones.
Although, I must agree with Peter on the fact that for people buying their phones out right, the prices really aren’t that different in terms of phone plans, if they are different at all. For the sale of phones out right to work, Cell Phone makers will need to form a partnership with another company in order to promote and create special plans for their phones. Like what Apple has done with their iPad device, which is sold unlocked and has a special data plan with AT&T.
Whatever the case, I hope that other cell phone makers try to sell their own phones since if someone can make it work, it could be good for consumers.