Google debuts Nexus One, opens web store

6 Jan 2010

Google last night unveiled its Android-based Nexus One smart phone, the seventh Android handset developed by HTC and the first one exclusive to Google itself, which will be sold through the company’s new web store but not yet available in Ireland.

The Nexus One specifications, as outlined by HTC CEO Peter Chou, position it as a pretty powerful smart phone due to its 1Ghz Snapdragon processor, and one that may provide serious competition for the iPhone in terms of its speed, web browsing experience, apps and ability to run multiple applications.

google shop

Google’s new web store for the Nexus One and selected Android devices

Google’s new “super phone” has a 3.7-inch high-definition AMOLED screen with light sensors to react to different lighting conditions in order to conserve power and a proximity sensor to prevent accidental touches.

nexus one

The Nexus One is small, slim and lightweight

The standard trackball as per the HTC Hero also acts as a notification tool, with pulsing lights to indicate different events, such as text messages or Bluetooth activation.

Before unveiling the Nexus One, Google said its development followed on from the observation that Android users were accessing the web up to 30 times more than users on a standard web-enabled handset and so the Nexus One was designed in close partnership with HTC to be the Android “super phone”.

nexus one weather app

Google demoes some advanced Android apps on the Nexus One

Googler Eric Sang demoed the different functionalities of the Nexus One, including the new Google weather app that tunnels down to provide, for example, the humidity history of your current location.

The accelerometer is mixed with graphics interactivity to give a 3D experience which is used in the photo album application: tilting the phone to the side makes the albums dip to give depth to the browser and photos can be clustered based on time, date and location.

nexus one photo

Nexus One’s photo gallery gives a 3D experience and clustered photo albums

Google has also been working on the voice-recognition abilities for the Nexus One, with the demo showing an email being successfully composed and some web searches carried out.

The unveiling of the Nexus One was topped off with the introduction of Google’s new online store that it said will not just sell the Nexus One but also other “selected Android devices”.

By Marie Boran