Google Nexus One Phone Speculation Hits Critical Mass


Is this the week Google drops Nexus One, its supposedly game-changing Android mobile device? If all goes according to plan -- and by "plan," we mean endless, unconfirmed speculation -- Google will introduce Nexus One at a press conference in Mountain View, Calif., Tuesday.

Google hasn't confirmed as much but has told various media outlets, including ChannelWeb.com, to expect a "significant announcement." Most expect that to be the official arrival of the Nexus One, which since the rumor mill began to heat up two months ago has been touted as Google's Apple iPhone killer.

The device, though manufactured by HTC, will be branded as a Google phone and run version 2.1 of Google Android. From there the actual details of the Nexus One get dicey.

A number of tech news sites, including Engadget and Gizmodo, posted what appear to be leaked pictures of the Nexus One. According to those and previously leaked specifics, the phone has a 3.7-inch screen and a 5-megapixel camera, an accelerometer, a proximity sensor, a light sensor, Wi-Fi radio with Bluetooth, an FM speaker, open GL ES 2.0 capable graphics, and a Snapdragon processor.

Gizmodo, with the help of leaked documents it says it obtained, further reported that the phone will cost about $530 unlocked or $180 with a two-year lock-in with T-Mobile. Engadget went so far as to post
T-Mobile was first mentioned as the carrier of choice for Nexus One as early as mid-December, following
a Federal Communications Commission document that confirmed HTC had tested the Nexus One for T-Mobile's 3G network. Further reports later cited that two versions of the phone -- the T-Mobile version and an unlocked version sold directly to consumers by Google -- would both be made available.

The Nexus One represents a continued push by Google into the smartphone marketplace, following the continued success of its Android operating system and the excitement created around the Motorola Droid and the rest of last fall's hot new Android phones.

A number of phones on Google's platform, in fact, were among Everything Channel's 10 Coolest Smartphones of 2009.

Thanks to all the Nexus One buzz and speculation, Google has also effectively stolen a page from the Apple playbook: building breathless anticipation in advance of a mysterious product launch. Google also stands to steal a bit of the thunder from this week's Consumer Electronics Show (CES), which kicks off Thursday in Las Vegas.