Nexus S is the second-generation Nexus smart phone, running Android 2.3 (Gingerbread), from Google and manufactured by Samsung. Nexus S phone is the first phone to run Android Gingerbread, sports faster 1Ghz Hummingbird processor & 4″ contour display, 5.0MP digital camera, includes Near Field Communication (NFC) chip and improved voice recognition features. The phone was released in US and UK on Dec 16, 2010, just in time for the holiday season.
Features & Tech Specs
Prominent features of Nexus S Phone include 1GHz Hummingbird ARM Processor (same as Samsung Galaxy S) that promises high performance with low power consumption, 4″ WVGA (480×800) super AMOLED display, 5 Megapixel (2560×1920) autofocus camera with LED and a front facing VGA (640×480) camera, talk time of 6.7 hours on 3G and 14 hours on 2G (claimed), triband HSPA with AWS support (no HSPA+), dedicated GPU, NFC, 512 MB RAM and 16GB iNAND Flash Memory. It also runs the latest Android Gingerbread OS which promises speed, includes redesigned soft keyword for faster text input and editing, one touch word selection and copy/paste, improved power management, latest Google Apps including Gmail, Maps & Youtube and supports new forms of communication using Internet Telephony and NFC. All this combined with 100,000 apps on the Android Market should satisfy all kinds of smart phone needs.
Read detailed Google Nexus S Phone Specs to learn more about this phone.
Buy Nexus S Phone in US
Best Buy stores in U.S. is selling the phone for $199.99 with a 2-year T-Mobile contract. The Nexus S will also be available online with a T-Mobile subscription or unlocked, meaning it can operate on AT&T and many other carriers worldwide. The unlocked and without contract phone has been priced at $529.99. The unlocked phone will however not work with AT&T 3G and T-Mobile’s faster HSPA+.
Buy Nexus S Phone in UK
Best Buy stores in U.K. is selling the product from December 20th, along with Carphone Warehouse. Carphone Warehouse is accepting the orders for the phone. Nexus S is available on four networks in UK including T-Mobile, O2, Three, Orange and Vodafone.
Nexus S everywhere
Nexus S is now available (or will be available shortly) in many countries including Taiwan, Italy, Canada, Australia, South Korea, Spain, France, Greece, Italy, Portugal, Romania and South Africa.
Nexus S reviews and comparisons
Based on early access to the phone, lots of reviews have been written by mainstream media and tech websites before and after the public release of the phone. Here’s a quick summary of all the reviews:
The high performance and low power consumption of 1GHz Hummingbird processor (along with dedicated GPU and 512MB RAM) has come for allround praise, although some had hoped for dual core processor in Nexus S. Some have marveled at the 4″ AMOLED display but by and large the response has been neutral to the contour display and Samsung’s plastic case (as compared to metal chassis and matte-finish cases from HTC and others). 16GB of onboard storage should be sufficient unless you shoot too many images / videos with your phone or prefer carrying all your music on the phone.
Nexus S phone’s call quality, microphone and speakerphone have come for uniform praise by tech reviewers. Some have complained about audio jack being at the bottom rather than top.
GPS performance got mixed reviews and one-way Near Field Communications (NFC) ability to read tags is not of much use at the moment but there’s excitement regarding its potential in future with many predicting that the technology is going to gain much traction in 2011.
Negatives includes lack of following features:
- Support for 4G and HSPA+
- MicroSD card slot
- Physical keyboard
- LED indicators
- Dedicated camera button
The Nexus S phone’s 1500mAh battery life is impressive but initial charging of battery can take more time (with possibility of that period reducing with subsequent recharges).
Inspite of having a 5 megapixel rear (with flash) and VGA front-facing camera, Nexus S camera’s inability to take good quality images, both in well lit and low light conditions has disappointed many and this may keep away potential buyers. Lack of support for HD videos is a major vacuum and probably explains the absence of external SD slot on the phone. However sharing the photo / video using Picasa / Facebook / Youtube is a snap. Lack of native video chat feature in Android (probably coming in Android Honeycomb update) means that the front facing VGA camera has to either wait or be used with third party software for video chat.
One of the strongest points of Nexus S phone is the stock Android 2.3 software (uncluttered by a carrier / manufacturer’s custom interface) that guarantees quick updates as and when they become available. Android Gingerbread’s improved camera control layout impresses while onscreen keyboard (OSK) has received major updates including more space between keys, multitouch ability, improvements in word suggestions, easier selection and copy/paste features. However, the OSK experience isn’t consistent across all apps and is still inferior to iPhone’s functionality. Gingerbread also includes minor tweaks and UI cleanup, changes to notification bar, a native task manager that allows you to take control of app management and integrated support for VoIP / SIP calling. Voice recognition lets you accomplish lots of things on the Nexus S without ever reaching for the keyboard. Nexus S comes with the nifty voice actions feature introduced in Android Froyo 2.2. Read more about how Voice Actions feature can help you stay productive.
Under the hood, other changes include better support for games developers and support for new video codecs including WebM. The big deal, however, is that Android Gingerbread is pristine and untarnished without any overlay (aka “Pure Google” experience).
Be sure to read our Nexus S review roundup containing both positive and negative reviews by early adopters and tech journalists around the world. Many reviews point out that Apple’s iPhone handles multimedia better and Android’s integration with Google apps —Gmail, Calendar, Youtube, Google Voice, etc.— makes Nexus S better. The overall consensus is that Nexus S is evolutionary (not revolutionary) and is the best Android phone yet.
Nexus S Phone in news
Mar 21, 2011 – Nexus S 4G comes to Sprint. In addition, In addition, Sprint customers will soon be able to take advantage of the full set of Google Voice features without changing or porting their number. No more excuses for not buying Nexus S.
Mar 15, 2011 – Good news for Nexus S owners – Google to start test of contactless payments using NFC in New York and San Francisco technology this spring.
Mar 7, 2011 – Except for initial success stories, Nexus S sales figures haven’t been released by Google / Samsung / carriers yet. Here’s some speculation on number of Nexus S sold based on Android Gingerbread share.
Feb 23, 2011 – Facebook contact sync dropped with Android 2.3.3 update . Users also report that this android update causes screen discoloring / yellow tint.
Jan 23, 2011 – Google fixes the Android SMS bug.
Jan 14, 2011 – XDA developers run Ubuntu on Nexus S.
Dec 23, 2010 – Within a week of the phone’s availability in US & UK, Google rolls out first over-the-air (OTA) update for Google Nexus S phone running Android 2.3. The Android 2.3.1 contains bug fixes and minor updates to Google Maps. This is one of the advantages of stock Android (“Pure Google” experience) where user (instead of manufacturer / carrier) is in full control of updates for the phone.
A giant fully functional 42″ Nexus S phone made its appearance at Best Buy store in California. Not for purchase, of course.
Dec 20, 2010 – Carphone Warehouse cuts Google Nexus S Sim-free price to £430 from £549. That’s about 20% less than the original price.
Dec 16, 2010 – Google Nexus S Phone Hits Best Buy Stores in US with free overnight shipping on Nexus S purchases through December 22. Buyers visiting Best Buy stores could walk out with a model that works with T-mobile connection. Best Buy will synchronize email accounts, transfer contacts from old phone and provide other services so that the customer leaves with their phone fully functional.
Nexus S phone was stripped apart by iFixit and rooted by xda community.
Dec 13, 2010 – Google confirms acquisition of Toronto-based firm Zetawire in August this year. Zetawire handles mobile payments via near field communications (NFC).
Dec 6, 2010 – Two years after Nexus one, Google unveils Nexus S with Gingerbread and NFC. Nexus S can be purchased (unlocked or with a T-Mobile service plan) online and in-store from Best Buy in the U.S. from Dec 16th and at Carphone Warehouse and Best Buy in the U.K from Dec 20th.