Google announced today that the Nexus One handset is now compatible with the 3G networks of AT&T in the US and Rogers Wireless in Canada. A CDMA version (for Verizon) is coming soon. However the phones are unsubsidized (no contract) so you’ll pay full price — unless buying from original Nexus One carrier T-mobile. The hefty full $529 price tag will keep many people away from this fine device:
With the Nexus One Google is testing a new approach to selling mobile handsets in the US, which is to enable consumers to get the device first (online) and service later. None of the involved carriers have complained about this but it does reflect the inversion of the relationship between mobile operator and device, with the latter becoming more important than the former.
The slow pace of sales of the Nexus One to date has led some to proclaim the Nexus One a “sales failure.” That assessment is both too harsh and premature. Flurry mobile analytics shows sales estimates for the iPhone, Droid and Nexus One at equivalent points in their life cycles — 74 days after launch:
The fact that the phone is only available online, combined with the fact that it has until now only been available from T-Mobile have limited its reach. But wider carrier availability and the simple truth that it’s the best of the Android handsets currently in the market should boost sales.
Separately Google has apparently hit a roadblock in its drive to trademark the Nexus One. According to the Nexus One blog — every product has its own blog now — the US PTO has refused to allow Google registration of the mark on the basis of potential confusion with a pre-existing trademark from a telecom company that provides voice and data services branded “Nexus.”
The refusal has been issued on the grounds that the mark could conflict with an existing NEXUS trademark (3554195) granted on December 30, 2008 to Integra Telecom under the same class with a description which includes the provision of telecommunication services and the transmission of voice and data.
The Integra Telecom service in question combines “voice, long distance and Internet access all over one connection.” As the blog post above points out there will likely be an appeal by Google. And the chances are reasonably good that Google would win. However Google could also try and buy the trademark from Integra Telecom.