The potential ripple effect of Google's new Nexus strategy
0. phoneArena 10 Oct 2012, 15:44 posted on
A couple days ago, we talked about how Google's rumored new Nexus strategy of releasing multiple devices through multiple manufacturing partners could help to stop the vocal minority within the Android user base from complaining about "fragmentation". Today, we want to talk about the potential ripple effect, and how more Nexus devices will affect the ecosystem as a whole...
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2. eisenbricher (Posts: 920; Member since: 09 Aug 2012)
Enjoyed reading the article. No objections.
58. kartik4u98 (Posts: 511; Member since: 19 May 2012)
Right! Michael is the best writer in Phonearena.
65. speckledapple (Posts: 873; Member since: 29 Sep 2011)
agreed on the article. Very well written.
3. tedkord (Posts: 3409; Member since: 17 Jun 2009)
One minor point. In general, it's not a vocal minority of Android users yelling about fragmentation. It's a vocal minority of iOS and WP users much more than Android users.
6. Captain_Doug (Posts: 729; Member since: 10 Feb 2012)
Definitely. Most android users probably don't even notice. Probably because it's so easy to see different phones as having different capabilities.
9. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2573; Member since: 26 May 2011)
That was covered in the last article. Android haters will never stop their noise, but everyone else can learn about the problem.
17. jroc74 (Posts: 3455; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)
Michael H, I thought you was an Apple fanboy....lol. Like I said in that other article.....some ppl don't read all your articles. Another nice on by the way.
39. -box- (Posts: 3470; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)
Michael is one of the most unbiased tech writers I have yet encountered.
40. downphoenix (Posts: 1987; Member since: 19 Jun 2010)
He may be an apple fan, but not an apple fanboy. Different things. A fan just means preferring or favoring whatever you're a fan of. A fanboy is someone who is immature and unreasonable with their fandom.
41. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2573; Member since: 26 May 2011)
Certainly not an Apple fan, but I do understand why people like Apple products (mostly because I'm the only tech nerd in my family, which means my mom, both sisters, and my wife all have iPads...)
44. squallz506 (banned) (Posts: 1075; Member since: 19 Oct 2011)
Michael what are you doing writing for pa?
go write for an established tech site like slashgear or endgadget. Youre too good for pa.
56. SonyXperiaNexus (Posts: 367; Member since: 01 Oct 2012)
No way. dont listen to him micheal. stay here and make phonearena develop or write for multiple sites if you can. btw is it just me or is pa comment section the best. i like the community.(even the trolls and haters) they add colour to the site( mostly red .lol)
31. jroc74 (Posts: 3455; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)
Those same ppl screaming fragmentation must never upgrade their PC's or buy a new PC.
33. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 4723; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)
'Cause they are still in shock from their experience with Vista....
4. XPERIA-KNIGHT (Posts: 2375; Member since: 08 Aug 2012)
"If Google suddenly clamped down on Android, it would fundamentally change the platform from what it is into something we may not want"
Exactly Michael, but the question is, Can Google give us an ecosystem that is as open as its always been yet controlled enough to where we have stability and fluidity like we find on IOS? Can the two come together in what we know as..... "Nexus"?
20. TROLL (banned) (Posts: 4851; Member since: 13 Apr 2012)
Smartphones ought to be made just like those purposed Nexus 5.0
phones will be unlocked. Google should also set up small kiosks
or booths in shooping malls , so people can put their hands on the
phones and try them out, or partner with say, Best-Buy
, who already offers some good deals.Nearly all carriers
are getting the iPhone now, and you don't mess with it's
purity. Who do you insist on messing with, Googles phone
? All Googles phones ought to be pure IMO, not just Nexu phones. With this new stategy Googles implementing, i hope Google cleans the carriers!
25. The_Innovation (Posts: 508; Member since: 18 Jul 2012)
You know, you're not living up to your name with such serious comments.
5. jan25 (Posts: 327; Member since: 26 Feb 2012)
from the current leaks so far, the possibility of having multiple Nexus devices is diminishing.
7. MorePhonesThanNeeded (Posts: 612; Member since: 23 Oct 2011)
Google shouldn't clamp down, but they should give some strict guidelines for support of the upcoming OS, so a manufacturer knows what is the minimum requirements to support upgradeability and also when they include their own UI they take full responsibility for updates using their UI, but Google releases should be able to run the instant Google releases them to OEM's. Which is why I love the Nexus initiative, but Google's dev guys should be fine tuning their OS to the point that it will run on the minimum of RAM and Processor clock cycles required to support entry level devices. It's obvious if the OS can run on low end devices that means the high end devices will run problem free and will have a bit longer life in the hands of a user who loves his phone and always wants to remain in the update loop. Google is definitely a very smart company, their programming prowess is impeccable and each and every version of Android that comes forth shows that these guys are always thinking pretty far forward, Google Now is incredible but the funny thing is even without Google Now the voice search on 2.3 Devices is still extremely fast and concise. S voice needs to die, lol. Sorry!
8. eman99 (Posts: 164; Member since: 03 Aug 2010)
if they would let out one a year and expandable memory slots then nexus would dominate
10. Ravail (Posts: 181; Member since: 14 Oct 2011)
I have a Samsung Galaxy S II Skyrocket, and with ole Sammy being really slow on updates.. it forced me to turn to CM9 and other roms throughout the XDA community.. and i'm glad i did.. As of this morning i got a copy of Android 4.1.2 Nightly :) glad i did to.. way better than stock firmware..
12. maxican16 (Posts: 361; Member since: 29 Sep 2011)
Wow, already? That was fast! What developer? CM?
11. maxican16 (Posts: 361; Member since: 29 Sep 2011)
Michael, you keep mentioning an HTC Nexus device. I haven't heard of one in the works. Do you have a source?
Although I'm not sure users will see faster updates to non-Nexus devices, I like your positive outlook. If only the carriers would get out of the way... they are a big part of the bottle-neck.
14. TROLL (banned) (Posts: 4851; Member since: 13 Apr 2012)
Very nice article once again Micheal.H. it won't have much direct effect, but having 5 Nexus phones will mean that more people will find a Nexus
phone that suits them-and that will mean more phones out
there, that fully support the Android open source APIs and dont use
All OEMs do various things to differentiate their product from
the others, but Htc and Samsung seem to do the best, ensuring
they don't break compatibility.
18. hobble (Posts: 130; Member since: 11 Oct 2011)
Another article on android fragmentation? Pffft. The "ripple effects" of the nexus program will be less different android phones being produced as consumers will likely be drawn to the nexus brand if ALL manufacturers create a version. And probably more manufacturers producing phones of a different OS to make up for lost revenue from flooding different versions of the same phone out on the market.
28. cncrim (Posts: 364; Member since: 15 Aug 2011)
I like that, that's great stradegy...... can they execute it?
35. snowman (Posts: 11; Member since: 07 Oct 2012)
Quote: 'Samsung may not always be the best about pushing updates, but since it began working with Google for the Nexus S and then the Galaxy Nexus, Samsung has been one of the better manufacturers about launching new devices with the newest version of Android. That may not apply to Jelly Bean updates so far, but Samsung is unlikely to have gotten any early builds of Jelly Bean, because it wasn't building the launch device.'.
Just a thought on the above, if Samsung's updates are faster because of their association with Google's Nexus program, why is LG's Optimus G reported to be using ICS and not JB, it's their flagship device, especially when other manufacturers are already releasing and updating phones to JB. Isn't LG the current Nexus program lead manufacturer for phones according to media. So shouldn't they at least be able to release from day one the G with JB.
And, yes I am aware that phones are not designed overnight! Still! Maybe criticism of LG's software updates are warranted, maybe.
43. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2573; Member since: 26 May 2011)
I'd guess that's probably due to all of the customization that has gone into the LG Optimus G. The Q slider and all of that stuff takes a lot of work, so LG has likely been working on that for a long time.
47. cretinick (Posts: 142; Member since: 25 Jan 2011)
Or maybe the speculations about a 4.2 Android version is true. And LG is working with the next version of Android that can't be put in the Optimus G yet. So, they will upgrade the Optimus G from ICS to 4.2 (Jelly Bean with Road Runner or Key Lime Pie).
But I know that is too good to be true...
We will only know the truth when Google resolve start to sing.
All I know is that expectation is almost giving me an ulcer.
48. remixfa (Posts: 13882; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)
Well, just to put it in perspective, The note2 launched with JB.. which I think makes it the first non Nexus to launch with JB if im not mistaken. Considering android's history, its getting a bit quicker from google update to new phone launch than it used to be.
The optimus G hasnt launched yet. There is still time for a JB upgrade... or one shortly after launch.
36. someones4 (Posts: 607; Member since: 16 Sep 2012)
A good move from google. But as i mentioned: why not sooner? Nexus notes and nexus razrs everywhere. No one will bitch about late updates anymore.
37. Evil_SaNz (Posts: 253; Member since: 20 Oct 2011)
People need objective journalism...I appreciate when reviewers try to find the best and worst of "both" worlds. Even other huge tech sites that I thought biased now have no excuses. For the iphone 5, the reviewer said: "Probably the best smartphone for the masses, but consider me a geek - I'll stick with android 4.1
42. pikapowerize (banned) (Posts: 1869; Member since: 03 May 2012)
i dont understand... how can a manufacturers benifit if google will only release a nexus once a year!
and worst part is they will again partner with samsung... very bias!
45. remixfa (Posts: 13882; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)
Because supposedly most all brands are going to be flaunting a Nexus device this year. The point is that the manufacturers will all have faster access to the next software update if they have a Nexus device in their stable.
If your a company that has a Nexus device, you get test software months before its released that you can be basing your overlay (sense, touchwiz, ect) on. If you dont have a Nexus in your line up, you get the software the same time as everyone else.. when google puts it in the public repository.
49. pikapowerize (banned) (Posts: 1869; Member since: 03 May 2012)
ok i know but that's not what i mean...
i know that if you have a nexus in your company, you'll have easy updates right?!
but what i mean is...why only one nexus? and worst only samsung will get all the love of android goodies... nexus s, galaxy nexus, the rumored galaxy nexus 2 and nexus 10!
i was excited about xperia nexus, one nexus, razr nexus (not really about optimus nexus, not now as long as LG knows how to marry/combine software and hardware)
but i do hope that most of the brands will flaunt nexus line!
59. cretinick (Posts: 142; Member since: 25 Jan 2011)
But that is exactly what the new Nexus policy is supposed to be!
Everybody can launch Nexus. Get early access to the new Android versions, get the know how in manipulation of the new version before it be launched, and make their, UI, Widget and aplications faster.
I just don't know how google will handle with all these companies working together. And how google will manage the future atualizations of a vast number of devices.
46. remixfa (Posts: 13882; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)
Good article Michael,
you pulled a new angle on the process of having multiple nexus (nexi?) that I had not thought of with more manufacturers having much quicker access to the next update to use for their own UI's.
Now that makes me wonder if google puts a restriction on the manufacturers that they are not allowed to use the Beta code for UI development until a certain point in the development timeline, like gold status... or if they are free to develop for themselves the moment they get the update code.
51. JunkCreek (Posts: 371; Member since: 13 Jul 2012)
May be Google can make standard Os just like Windows but yet, users still can customize it the way users want. Average users with computers only need tweaking not modifing the system even system kernels.
If Google can make Standard Android OS, then all the problems is solved and all become to depend on hardware structure compactibility just like on PCs/Laptops.
Imagine we can install any Android OS version on any phones with the needed only for it's phone driver just like on PCs/Laptops. It could be fun.
52. mas11 (Posts: 1003; Member since: 30 Mar 2012)
This is one of the reasons Michael H is my favorite writer on this site, awesome article. (Btw no offense to the rest of the PA staff)
PS. John Vvvvvvvvvv haha love your reviews
53. Sniggly (Posts: 6197; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)
Excellent article. My only disappointment with the new Nexus program is that, other than the potentially fake rumors about the Motorola Occam, there's no mention of a Motorola Nexus.
However, I've said it before and I'll say it again, the primary delay in updates these days comes from the carriers. It's not glaringly obvious here in the US because there are so few examples of unlocked phones, but international variants of devices get the updates so much sooner than the US versions. Also, there are examples of devices like the Xoom. The Verizon version got ICS six months after the Wifi version did. Also, the Wifi version already has Jelly Bean, while the Verizon version still hasn't.
62. SonyXperiaNexus (Posts: 367; Member since: 01 Oct 2012)
sorry if im wrong but why would motorola need to be a nexus? The only things a nexus gets is quick updates and better support. wouldnt motorola get quick updates anyway coz its owned by google. Google may even get rid of motoblur or keep it as a customization option turned on by default and may even advise motorola about what hardware would be best for the os. the result is that every motorola device is sort of a nexus even though it doesnt say so. I think thats exactly what google is planning to do and thats why theres no motorola nexus.
54. Dragonov (Posts: 5; Member since: 11 Oct 2012)
Long time reader of phonearena's articles and Micheal h. you are by far the best writer on this site, looking forward to more of your articles. Also why isn't there any sd slots on any nexus device? is that to keep cost down?
60. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2573; Member since: 26 May 2011)
I covered that back in November:
57. ibap (Posts: 650; Member since: 09 Sep 2009)
Can there ever truly be a CDMA Nexus device?
If you're cut off from updates directly from Google, what does 'Nexus' mean in that context?
As an Android user who has flashed custom ROMs, but refuses to accept the this-part-isn't-working-but-that's-OK approach, will we ever see a true Nexus CDMA device? Something major has to change if that is to be the case.
61. ChafedBanana (Posts: 312; Member since: 20 Sep 2011)
Google SHOULD clamp down on Verizon. What makes VZW so special? Total B.S.