Google Phone Review – Finally an Honest Nexus One Review
I was finally able to get my hands on a Nexus One. It has been out for several months now, but I wanted to share my first-time experience with it. I must admit, I am a huge iPhone fan, but wanted to see how the Google Nexus One VS Iphone battle for myself. The Google Nexus One phone is the first real “Google Phone.” It is being sold directly by Google, and it is branded a Google device though it is built by HTC, and you won’t find it listed on a carrier’s site. The NexusOne was designed to work with T-Mobile’s GSM and 3G networks, and can be purchased with T-Mobile service, but can also work at GSM EDGE speeds on AT&T. Unfortunately, not with 3G. Versions built for Verizon’s network in the U.S. and Vodafone’s network elsewhere are set to become available in the coming months.
The phone is awesomely fast. More so than my iPhone and features some cutting edge hardware, like a large AMOLED display and a 1GHz CPU. The screen is beautiful. Controls on the Nexus One are pretty easy to use. There is a color-changing trackball that is below that gorgeous, bright and colorful 3.7-inch, 800 x 480 pixel AMOLED touchscreen display. Both the trackball and the capacitive touchscreen perform very well. The touch sensitive controls for back, menu, home, and search that sit between them are OK. Hardware keys would have been greatly preferred, even if it messed up their form factor just a tad.
The phone offers wonderful audio clarity on calls. In fact, possibly the best I’ve heard in a phone. Unfortunately, the speakerphone functionality leaves a lot to be desired. The Nexus One does a great job with contacts as well. The Android OS allows for 3rd party developers to integrate directly into the main contacts system, and Google includes a nice Facebook app that works rather well with integrating into the system. I am actually jealous of the OS because my iPhone wishes it had such a manageable contact system. Multiple Gmail accounts can be added to the device for contacts or email and the same is true for Microsoft Exchange accounts.
The 5 megapixel camera is quick to focus, and even has a nice LED flash. I didn’t have much time to play with the camera, but was definitely liking the results. The wide screen 720 x 480 pixel video that the Nexus One shoots is also pretty good, and certainly good enough to upload to YouTube or other video sharing sites. Videos and photos can be easily shared from the new Gallery application on the Nexus 1 which I found is pretty awesome. Moving onto music, the Nexus One handles that really well. Both 3.5mm headphones and Bluetooth stereo headphones are supported, and the music app organizes tracks by album, artist, and playlist. Since I’ve always used iTunes, it was a little different to get music on the phone. The ability to link to playlists from the home screen is brilliant, and the new animated “live” homescreen wallpapers that are linked to the music as it is played is a nice touch as well.
So all in all, I was very impressed with the Nexus One. I love the hardware design, the amazing CPU, and the beautiful AMOLED display, but I just would not recommend getting it for T-Mobile. Again, I want to mention the processor because it is worth mentioning twice. The new 1GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon CPU in the Nexus One is what makes everything work at blazing speeds. I’ve not seen a faster device on the market. The rendering of loaded web pages might be the best example of this speed. All smartphones need one of these processors.
The only things that disappointed me was the horrible speakerphone, the bad battery life, and sketchy reception, and this is probably because of the T-Mobile reception in my area. I am very curious to know how many Google has sold. I am sure the numbers will rise once Verizon gets their hands on the phone this spring. The minor problems will more than likely be solved. If you want to buy one now, you’ll need to go to Google.com/phone and pay $529 for the unlocked version, or pay around $179.00 for a version with T-Mobile service. Upgrades for existing T-Mobile customers are possible, but the early termination fees for this device can reach upwards of $550 so don’t cancel