Google said it has no plans to continue the Nexus line and that broke many fanboy hearts. Yes, the search giant will go forward with the Pixel line but it’s not the same.
Here’s the thing – a Nexus is an Android phone, a Pixel is a Google phone. Android is the dominating OS, developed by Google itself, phone manufacturers and even part-time volunteers. And yes, it’s closely associated and often tied to Google services.
But it doesn’t have to be – you can use WhatsApp or Telegram instead of Allo, Bing or DuckDuckGo instead of Search, F-Droid or Amazon’s Store instead of Play Store, HERE or OsmAnd instead of Google Maps and so on.
There are many alternatives – both commercial and open source – that both users and phone manufacturers could choose between. For example, before Google Maps used offline storage, Samsung put HERE Maps on its phones and let you download maps to the whole world for free.
Android could be anything you want it to be, the Pixels can only be Google phones. Google wants you to use its services, same as Apple, Microsoft and Amazon. This works great for Apple, okay for Amazon and not at all for Microsoft. Could Google succeed in being a premium company?
Because the hacker-friendly attitude wasn’t even the best part of the Nexus line – the Nexus 4 was a flagship for very little money (it was $200 at one point!). The Nexus 5, which had features even the Pixels lack, launched at $350 and got several price cuts later. True, the Nexus 6 went premium at $650, but it was a 6″ phone with stereo speakers, OIS, wireless charging and some water resistance at the same price as the small Pixel.
Will you miss the affordable flagship Nexus? Or the high-end Nexus with reliable software upgrades and great potential for customization? Or is a Google phone what you really wanted?
The Nexus line is dead, will you miss it?