Google changes Nexus One plans, will stop selling handsets online

Although Google launched the Nexus One with grand plans to radically change the way consumers purchased phones and service, it looks like the experiment has fizzled to an end -- the company just announced that will eventually stop selling handsets online and instead partner with carriers to sell the N1 in-store while using its website to promote "a variety of Android phones available globally." Google says customers simply want a hands-on experience before buying a phone, but we'd say the lack of subsidies from any carrier except T-Mobile and some serious customer service issues probably played in killing Google's original sales strategy -- and of course, both Verizon and Sprint essentially refused the N1 in favor of the bespoke Incredible and EVO 4G. We'd also say that Android as a whole will remain unaffected, since the Nexus One was never a huge seller, but it's still rare that a company simply gives up a business model like this, and we don't know if Google will ever follow up with a successor to the Nexus One. The Google Phone is dead, people -- long live the Google Phone.

Update: We just asked Google about future devices and support for current Nexus One owners, here's what they said:

On the future: We will continue working with our partners to bring cutting-edge new Android handsets to market, but we have nothing to announce right now.

On support: This announcement doesn't have any immediate impact on support for consumers who purchase Nexus One through the web store.