Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Google unveils new Pixel C, Nexus 5X, 6P, and Chromecasts

Google has already unveiled it's product line for this fall, and it was mostly what was already expected (it's hard to keep secrets these days.) We have a refreshed line of Nexus (5X and 6P), Chromecasts (for video and audio), and also a new convertible tablet: the Pixel C.

There were no surprises, as nearly everything had been leaked over the previous days/weeks. And so, the only thing that was left to do was to check each and every thing we already knew as being confirmed:

  • Nexus 6P by Huawei, 5.7", metal body, fingerprint reader, enhanced camera - check
  • Nexus 5X by LG, 5.2", fingerprint reader, enhanced camera - check
  • Chromecast 2015 with dual-band 802.11ac WiFi - check
  • Chromecast Audio for audio only output (now with Spotify support) - check
  • Pixel C, a 10.2" Android tablet, with attachable keyboard - check

Even the prices were spot on, with the Nexus starting at $379 and $499; and the Chromecasts at $35 (no matter which model). The Pixel C also starts at $499, but you'll have to spend an extra $149 if you want the magnetically attached keyboard/dock.

I think the Pixel C and Chromecasts are spot on, but I think there's a missed opportunity in the Nexus line. If Google wants to cater for users wanting "small" and "larger" smartphones, why should they go and make the smaller one bigger, and the bigger one smaller, ending up with these new 5X and 6P that are just 0.5" apart? Besides, $379 for a Full HD, 2GB smartphone isn't particularly that big of a deal - you can get that for less than half the price (for instance, the Lenovo K3 Note.)

So... it seems the price premium needed to join the Nexus club is becoming steeper and steeper by the year. And although this is definitely better than the absurdly expensive Nexus 6 of last year, I wouldn't be surprised to see prices dropping within a few months.

The thing is... though the Nexus 6P costs $499 in the US, in Europe it's getting a €649(!) price tag, that's $730, or roughly put: about 50% more! So... we'll just how well it goes; though I wouldn't be surprised to see even long time Google die-hard fans to start reconsidering using those cheaper (but still amazing) smartphones, and becoming increasingly fond of alternative Android editions, like Cyanogen.

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