Google reenters mobile retail space selling Galaxy Nexus unlocked.
Google was involved with selling the first Google Nexus phones, but decided to stop doing that after the acceptance and sales of the very first Nexus smart phone did not do well as they had hoped. Since then, others have manufactured and been responsible for the distribution of the Google Nexus phones as a premier device. They have been known for not having the normal bloating of the OS as most smart phones do. Yesterday, Google put a GSM version of the very popular Samsung Galaxy Nexus on their Google Play site. This is retailing at a price of $399 and is an unsubsidized price. This is an unlocked phone which you can take to any wireless carrier who supports and provides GSM service.
Here in the US, that means this unlocked 4G LTE phone can work on the AT&T and T-Mobile wireless networks. That leaves Verizon and Sprint out of the picture given they support CDMA and not GSM. For most of Europe, it will work in most countries because of the standardized GSM networks which are very popular. For anyone who purchases the phone, you would not be locked into the standard 2 year contract you have to sign up for to get a subsidized phone at a lower price. Typically, an unlocked phone has been priced in the area of $600, so this is a pretty good deal on a great phone.
Included with the phones will be Google Wallet, along with a $10 credit. Mobile payments are at the beginning of acceptance and with this phone, you would be ready to take advantage of it. This is essentially the same phone as what was launched at Verizon, except that it supports GSM instead of the CDMA wireless network.
There have been rumors of Google returning to selling mobile devices and this is the first step in that direction. The next one we expect to see is the Google Nexus tablet in the coming months. Rumors and speculation have been making the rounds for their 7 inch tablet which is expected to aggressively compete against the Amazon Kindle Fire. For now, Google has taken the first steps in re-establishing themselves in the mobile device sales.