Is Google crowd-sourcing the Nexus 5 announcement?

This article may contain personal views and opinion from the author.
Is Google crowd-sourcing the Nexus 5 announcement?
Many of you have been getting pretty fed up with the endless rumors with little verifiable information concerning the Nexus 5; and frankly, we've been getting pretty tired of it around here too. I can't even tell you how often I started a column yesterday that had a title somewhere in the realm of "I'm done, I'm out, I don't f***ing care about the f***ing Nexus 5 anymore. I'll get excited again when it is real." But, I held back on that urge partially because it isn't very professional to have that many f-bombs in a column title, but also because I would have felt like an idiot had I written out my rage only to have the official announcement of the device happen today. 

The general consensus seems to be that the Nexus 5 will finally be announced today, and that announcement will likely happen very very shortly (possibly just as I hit "publish" on this column, at which point it will be lost in the flood of news). But, I've had a thought for the last week or so that has taken a bit of a transformation today, and I wanted to share it. 

The original thought was this: "Is Google delaying the announcement in order to give Kit Kat (the candy) more traffic?" As we all know, the tie-in between Kit Kat and Android has caused a number of theories and a ton of traffic going to the Kit Kat website, Facebook page, and Twitter account, all looking for clues about when Google would finally make the announcement. That original thought was very cynical, possibly not wrong, but definitely cynical. 

The reality is that October 31st was likely the plan all along, meaning there was no cynical "delaying" being done by Google. Halloween has become a day all about candy, so what better day to unveil Android 4.4 KitKat and the flagship devices that will launch with it? Because of this thought, my original cynical theory transformed into the idea that Google never intended on having a bit involved announcement for the new device, and maybe Google just wanted to use the power of the crowd to get the word out. 

To be fair, this is not an original idea, though Google may have played the game in a new way. Apple has always used the rumor mill to generate excitement for new products. In the Steve Jobs era, the rumor mill was used because Apple was extremely secretive and tended to not let things leak unless it was necessary. In the Tim Cook era, Apple has become sloppier. I can't say that Apple has been intentionally leaking as much info as we are getting, because Apple's signature is still the big involved event to announce the new devices; and, those events are dulled quite a bit by the fact that we know all there is to know before we see Tim Cook take the stage. 

Crowd-sourced marketing


But, the Nexus 5 rumor mill has been different. There were enough leaks six weeks ago that designers were able to put together a 3D render of the device. We have essentially known the specs for weeks as well, although the more official-looking confirmations didn't arrive until this past week. A couple days ago, there were so many press renders leaked that another 360-view of the Nexus 5 was built. The only mysteries were in the details of Android 4.4, and what to expect from the Nexus 10. 

And, now today, we've gotten a few leaks concerning Android 4.4 and what to expect from that, not to mention tons more leaks from people around the world who "magically" got their hands on a new Nexus 5 before Google officially announced anything. One way or another, Google has obviously been seeding the information to various sources throughout this process, then Google has let us take it from there. 

This has worked so well because the Nexus line is designed for the tech elite, it is made for the uber-geeks, and those of us who may have just a bit too much time to dedicate to following tech news (or those of us who decided to turn that time-consuming habit into a job). So, we were all too eager to take it upon ourselves to build 3D models, and dissect every bit of evidence for clues. Sure, there were plenty of dead ends and false hopes, but there was enough real information that an accurate picture of what was coming came through. And, because of how long the process went on, many of us are at the point where we don't even want the big announcement event from Google (though it may still happen). We just want the Nexus 5. We did a lot of work to get here, and it's almost time for the reward.

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24 Comments

1. scriptwriter

Posts: 396; Member since: Nov 13, 2012

Pulling my hair out with frustration!!! Would of LMAO 'd if you had written the article with f-bombs.

6. D.Aceveda

Posts: 433; Member since: Jun 30, 2012

I think it is great marketing, however I believe this WILL back fire on Google if they string it out for too long Its been 60 days since Sept 1st, the announcement of Kit Kat. People are sick of waiting

12. greyhulk

Posts: 184; Member since: Jun 30, 2010

But then again, what's the alternative to waiting? Jumping ship to another platform? People can be as sick as they want of waiting. It probably won't change whether or not they buy the device when it's released. The more hype Google builds, the better it will probably sell. I don't think there are many of us out there who thought these "leaks" were all accident. I strongly suspect that most leaks are intentional at this point.

16. SellPhones82

Posts: 569; Member since: Dec 11, 2008

No one outside of the tech-blogs and G+ even know about the Nexus 5. I doubt people will jump to a another OS but many potential buyers will simply buy a phone that IS available. I've seen a good amount of posts were people just bought the Note 3, G2, or Moto X because they got tired of waiting. If nothing happens today or tomorrow people will start to be turned off by the marketing stunt. I still wonder if there will ever be an announcement and if Google will just start selling it on Google Play to see how many Nexus 5 (and KitKat) they can sell without even having any kind of formal announcement. Guess we will find out soon...going back to pressing F5

17. akki20892

Posts: 3902; Member since: Feb 04, 2013

Hold on buddy hold on, u r now mad, we have to move you in mental hospital.

24. Tommy1960i

Posts: 144; Member since: Oct 11, 2013

A nice phone And a good price To Nexus Hello To iPhone goodbye No more problems Now things are clear We are out of trouble The Nexus is here!

2. Hughey2k2

Posts: 15; Member since: Jul 26, 2012

Right on!!!

3. iyngr

Posts: 72; Member since: Jul 14, 2013

Will it be announced by tonight (IST) or not ?

4. improv

Posts: 96; Member since: Sep 09, 2013

I'm hoping for the 11am PST announcement/release rumor.

5. Jklaz

Posts: 159; Member since: Jul 01, 2013

All of the hype and leaks make it more exciting so its a good strategy in my opinion

7. alannyny

Posts: 30; Member since: Jun 27, 2012

I find it very disappointing that Google chose to do a marketing tie-in for the new Android version. It seems tawdry and crass, and certainly Google doesn't need the paltry additional revenue. There's no other upside for Google, really. The Kit Kat name has been associated with various louche businesses in the past. Kit Kat the confection isn't recognized worldwide. Neither is Key Lime Pie, but at least (as a regional, traditional favorite) there are people all over the world who will find it interesting to learn about the dessert. Similarly, in the future Google can choose a non-US dessert that many people on hometurf will enjoy learning about. So what'll it be ... Indian zarda or Turkish zerde?

14. MichaelHeller

Posts: 2734; Member since: May 26, 2011

There has been no money exchanged between Google and Kit Kat, it's all about visibility and traffic.

18. mc1191

Posts: 40; Member since: Sep 08, 2012

Halloween announcement... What is one of the most famous candies that start with the letter "K"? Halloween... candies... letter K... Kit Kat... My logic will be BS if they don't announce it today... lol

8. AfterShock

Posts: 4147; Member since: Nov 02, 2012

Happy Halloween! The anticipation is scary.

9. LoveHater

Posts: 234; Member since: Oct 09, 2013

It had to be dIfferent..... after all THIS IS GOOGLE

10. nanchomex

Posts: 3; Member since: Oct 31, 2013

I'm debating whether to buy right away or to wait to see if there'll be any black Friday sale (can you imagine if I could get the 32gb on sale)... advice pls

11. greathero1

Posts: 584; Member since: Jun 13, 2008

They can keep the leaks coming and build all the hype they feel they need to. My only request is that they have adequate supply so that I don't have to wait 3 1/2 months like with the Nexus 4. Hopefully they also have the white version available at launch as well. I guess I am just waiting for Google to take my money lol.

13. harigrg33

Posts: 188; Member since: May 20, 2013

I hope the event is not jst a tea without sugar in it...

15. jove39

Posts: 2147; Member since: Oct 18, 2011

19. improv

Posts: 96; Member since: Sep 09, 2013

20. nanchomex

Posts: 3; Member since: Oct 31, 2013

well just bought one in black! woo hoo!

21. _PHug_

Posts: 482; Member since: Oct 11, 2011

" We did a lot of work to get here, and it's almost time for the reward. " - Phonearena Or is it?

22. nanchomex

Posts: 3; Member since: Oct 31, 2013

I like those spigen cases, which one looks better on the black nexus?

23. roldefol

Posts: 4744; Member since: Jan 28, 2011

Nice work, Michael. I had that exact thought earlier this week. I didn't call it crowdsourcing, but I suspected they would skip the announcement, drop the device in Google Play, and let the tech sites do the rest.

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