Google has said they’ll be rolling out their new Nexus One smart phone, the “iPhone Killer,” in January. A date and carrier have been established: January 5 and the carrier will be T-Mobile. Now, a leak shows the pending Google page for selling the phone and another leak of an internal memo at T-Mobile shows something else. Google will sell the phone, not T-Mobile.
That’s an interesting twist.
The Google leak is based on the graphic here, which is a screen capture first published by Gizmodo when an anonymous tipster sent it in. The graphic shows the Nexus One home page. More screen shots show the sales page. With pricing. The phone can be purchased in two ways: unlocked through Google, without subsidies or a carrier plan, and locked into T-Mobile with subsidies and a carrier plan.
For the former, the direct purchase price is $530, which is on par with the comparable iPhone models when purchased alone. The name Google Phone has been dumped for Nexus One officially, it appears, and the T-Mobile subsidy price is $180. Other contract details were also spelled out on the pages, including the oddity that the customer acknowledges that HTC is the phone manufacturer and not Google. Probably some legaleze their law department dreamt up to avoid lawsuits from people claiming they get brain tumors from the phone or something.
An internal memo at T-Mobile confirms that Google will be selling the phone from http://www.google.com/phone and that T-Mobile will not be selling the phone from their website. This was posted on Engaget and confirms the Google screen shots. This plan may backfire on Google, though, as most people I know do their phone shopping on their network’s site. Perhaps T-Mobile will have a link to Google for purchase.
I think the reasoning behind Google’s decision to be Type A about the phone’s sales is because they are selling a completely unlocked phone at $530. That phone is compatible with all of the GSM network carriers. Which means it will run on AT&T, directly in competition with the iPhone. This is pointed out by TechCrunch.
All of those things are what I pointed out earlier this month when talking about the iPhone vs. Nexus One here.
So the drama rolls on, though it will probably die down within a few days of the Nexus One hitting the streets and the mystique finally getting worn off.