Google Nexus One. A 'Game Changer?'

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With 2010 here, there seems no shortage of ideas to get things moving again.  Apple has a big announcement coming the 27th of January. CES (Consumer Electronics Show) in Las Vegas has 2,500 companies showing off new gadgets. It's no secret CES will be filled with lots of 3D TV stuff.  I don't see that much beyond a ‘humm, that's nice'. Without a standard for the Hollywood Inc.'s of the world to transmit 3D movies, it would be like every TV broadcaster needed you to buy a TIVO type device for their offerings.

Apple not announcing the rumored ‘tablet PC' til the end of the month may mute some of the CES excitement. I think the big news of this young decade is (at least for the USA), the new Google based (Android Version 2.1) smart phone.  The Nexus One has the stuff to become a game changer (maybe). The reason for this is not the tight integration to Google Services.  Not even the better screen than the Blackberry and iPhone. The reason the new Gphone may be a game changer is the SIM. No matter where you live, your cell phone needs a SIM.

It's a ‘personality chip' that gives you a phone number, with a phone carrier, like T-Mobile ($529 Unlocked or $179 with a 2 year agreement with T-Mobile) or AT&T (both options for the Nexus One (Gphone the sequel). While as I understood things) these are the only two wireless carriers in the USA to use the GSM technology to be cell phones, it is a very common system outside the USA, so planet-trotting road warriors prefer phones that are GSM based. I don't yet fully understand how Vodaphone and Verizon fit in this announcement.

And I don't see this as the game changer. Like the rest of the world, the Nexus One allows you to change out the SIM. Don't like your carrier, out old SIM, in with the new SIM and you are free. No multi-year agreements with ‘early cancellation fees' set so high, the US Congress is not happy with the bar it sets. Sure, ‘unlocked' phones cost more than the wireless razor that only accepts blades from that vendor.  And over the couple year life span of a contract (or a phone), the money you spend becomes higher than the unlocked phone.  Maybe you cannot cost justify putting out the money for an unlocked phone. Well, settle for fewer features in your hardware and get an older or used unlocked cell phone.  I use a Quad-Band (4 frequency ranges) Samsung. Looks like an iPhone at first glance. Of course it doesn't have the breath of applications that the iPhone has.

And I have yet to spend a penny on 3rd party apps for it because it came with everything I need.  No, it doesn't have the 3G speed of the iPhone or Nexus One.  How many AT&T users really get 3G, even in an area with 3G? Due to over-subscribing, dang few users is the answer. So that means users in the USA will probably want to go T-Mobile (as the Nexus One does not have 3G Internet speeds with AT&T in the hardware). Of course tying tightly to Google Applications does bring some money saving features.

Voice-activated turn-by-turn GPS (without charge) means no more paying for navigation services, and not carrying a second device. While the internal GPS is good, it's visual search that could really change our lives. At this moment, Google Goggles (Visual search) doesn't work with everything. And all reports are it is amazing at finding products or landmarks by studying the picture you took.  By the way, the Nexus One has the best camera in a phone, to date (5 Megapixel with flash). While I'm thrilled by all this new stuff, being able to have pre-paid SIM's in different countries means I don't have to have or carry a phone for each country I visit. And I'm not paying for monthly service for multiple countries, while I'm only in one at a time.  

My one piece of advice if you go this route is: store all phone numbers and contacts on the SIM, not built-in phone memory. This is because your dialing needs will change as you change countries.  Sure it's a little messy updating multiple SIM's when contact data changes. For that, just use the ‘notes' feature and the built-in memory to hang on to data until you have updated all your SIMs. Then your ‘auto-dialer' will function correctly, as long as you have a signal and battery power. Some will point out that the Apple Store having so many applications for the iPhone will make it tough for the Nexus One. I believe that the open nature of Android software will cause a flood of 3rd party applications. Of course the 3.7 inch AMOLED screen is a joy. How the battery will hold up on what is the fastest processor in a phone (Qualcomm Snapdragon running at 1Gtz) is an answer only time will tell. As Active-Matrix Organic Light Emitting Diode screens use far less power and are quite rugged (compared to other technology), I don't expect battery time to be an issue. You can lose your MP3 player as Nexus One has a 2.5MM headphone jack and Stereo Bluetooth.

A new feature is "Active Noise Suppression" built into the headset, not the microphone. I have no idea how that impacts applications such as the VU Meter (re-creating an analog sound meter).  I'm willing to go out on a limb and guess that the Speech Recognition (SR) gets a benefit from this.  I'm hoping Google dictation becomes part of Google's Web based cloud services.  

Tcat Houser is a trainer in Information Technology as well as assisting people understand the most complex computer all, the human brain. This necessitates his being a professional Road warrior.

As A Certified Technical Trainer and Subject Matter Expert (SME) @ TRCB.com it can be difficult to figure out what Tcat is currently researching.

See my lastest work at TRCBVideos.com - Convert Articles, Reviews into Videos Automagically.

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