Getting on the Google Nexus Q train

At Google I/O last week we saw several new things unveiled such as the Google Nexus 7 tablet and the Android 4.1 Jelly Bean operating system but we haven’t yet paid a lot of attention, apart from some basic facts, to the Nexus Q, a social streaming media player. We’ll look at it a bit more today and ask if you’ll be getting on the Google Nexus Q train?

To a certain extent that is limited by where you live as the Google Nexus Q is being launched in the U.S but not so far in the U.K. The Nexus Q will be capable of streaming users’ content from Google Play with HD movies, TV shows and music direct from the cloud. If you want to view a couple of videos about how Nexus Q works and an introduction then head to our previous report here. The Nexus Q is scheduled for shipping in two to three weeks in the US and is priced at $299. It can be ordered through the Google Play store here where you can also sign up to be notified when it becomes available.

Some specs and features of the Google Nexus Q include an OMAP4460 dual-core processor and SGX540 graphics, 1GB of RAM, 16GB of NAND flash memory, 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, NFC, Micro HDMI and all running on Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. It measures 4.6-inches in diameter, weighs in at 2 pounds and has a satin touch coating.

The arrival of the Nexus Q may be more significant than first realized as a report on The Verge tells how it is being made in the USA, a real talking point given the ongoing ethical debates about some overseas manufacturing and also the state of the American job market. Google could have pulled a real cat out of the bag by sourcing the Nexus Q close to home and it’s known that they are being manufactured in San Jose, California.

By being one of the first companies to stick with the US for the manufacture of its first self-built consumer device, Google could benefit from the feel-good factor that this could instill in many people, where people once again care how their goods are made and about the people who make them. However labor costs are more in the US and of course some people are already complaining about the Nexus Q’s $300 price tag so Google is taking a risk in some ways with its stance on US manufacturing. We really hope this risk pays off for Google. As The Verge points out, Google is proud of this move and rightly so.

If you want to find out more about the Nexus Q then head to this Google page which shows all of its capabilities and features. One more point of interest has been reported in another Verge article and that is a Google Nexus Q Magic 8-Ball Easter egg. Google is renowned for its Easter egg surprises and we learn that once you’ve splashed the cash and hooked up your home entertainment system then a special Magic 8-Ball mode can be conjured up by rapidly tapping the Nexus Q image.

We’re interested in hearing your thoughts on the Nexus Q. If you are in the UK would you be interested in this device if it ever became available? If you’re in the US are you tempted to purchase the Nexus Q even with that $300 price tag? Maybe you think it’s worth the money to encourage more manufacturing in the US? Let us know with your comments.


2 thoughts on “Getting on the Google Nexus Q train”

  1. I was looking at this because I thought, hey, a cool black American-made orb thingy that can be my media server! I was hoping it might replace my aging Mac Mini that’s currently being used for that purpose.  Now, the Mac was way more than $300 so let’s not even worry about the price of this orb any more, the price is fine. Let’s talk functionality.

    Right now, it seems to me that the device is hampered by the small size
    of the ecosystem it lives in — it doesn’t do Netflix, doesn’t connect
    to iOS devices, and so forth.  As a current resident of Apple’s ecosystem, I’d love iOS capability, but I understand — Google wants a way to rip me out of Apple’s clutches.  And if they keep making stuff in the USA, I just might have to jump ship for that reason alone. Call me quixotic, but I want to support that business model. Give me an American-built Android phone, and I’ll buy both devices tomorrow.

    This in spite of the fact that the orb doesn’t yet (I hope) support Netflix, which is a pretty important function.  No Hulu support.  Most shockingly, it doesn’t support Google TV.  C’mon, guys, always support YOUR OWN ecosystem. That’s how you get people to switch, for crying out loud.  And an iPhone app wouldn’t hurt, as far as getting the camel’s nose into Apple customers’ tents.

    I can deal with the limitations in music, and the need to upload my entire library into Google’s music thingamajig.  I’m not screaming to leave iTunes or anything, but I can be pulled away for the sake of sheer patriotic fervor.

    But at the end of the day, I think we have a device that hasn’t reached its potential yet. This should be a screaming breakthrough of a device, a full function media handler that can stream your movies for you and play your tunes and do it all from your phone. That’s what it’s marketed as. The hardware is certainly capable of it. As soon as they bring its compatibility forward a bit, such that it plays nice with other devices and works with major content services, this will be a real winner.

    I’m hoping they do make the needed improvements. No compatibility, no sale.

  2. Vanquisher says:

    If the Nexus Q will not sell, it’s because of the $299 price.  Perhaps one of the biggest reasons it’s priced at $299 is BECAUSE it was manufactured in California, U.S.A which happens to be bastion of higher taxes and powerful labor unions. 

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