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Google changes Nexus One plans, will stop selling handsets online

Nilay Patel
05.14.10
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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.

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