By now every single one of you, if I put up a poll on this, would vote that you friggin’ hate carrier bloatware which is why some of you are glad you got an iPhone, a Windows Phone, a Nexus One, why you learned how to root or you just put up with crap in life. Nobody likes carrier bloatware except the carriers because they either don’t’ know any better or because they know some truth about profitability that doesn’t jive with consumer satisfaction.

With what up until now has been minor exception to the Nexus project, Google has pretty much surrendered to carriers and OEMs doing whatever they want to pervert the devices thanks to the whole open thing, a cost of doing FOSS business. I’m not one of them but many would identify the Nexus One as a failure (I regard it as “an enlightening experiment” – and a hell of a phone), one from which Google must have gotten their land legs on how to do the flagship “Google Experience” phone thing with their pals at T-Mobile and at least get what they expect to get more or less in terms of the Nexus S’s sales.

I don’t know what they’re expecting. In the States it’s going to the least popular of the four carriers, though that fine young lady (you know who I’m talking about) in their commercials is turning out to be a game changer in addition to a head turner judging by their Q3 figures. I haven’t seen one ad for this Nexus. Just saw another MyTouch 4G ad and the launch is tomorrow, and I like that actually. At least they made this for the Youtube crowd:

I like the apparent lack of promotion, just like its very-soon-to-be predecessor, because I want to see if disenfranchised Android owners, disillusioned by nothing about Android but the carrier bloatware, gravitate on over to this phone even if it means switching carriers. Specifically the crowd of people who’d otherwise be attracted to AT&T’s Captivate, a similar phone but with an unpleasant taste of the AT&T and Samsung experience muddying up the Google experience. I want to see how this phone fairs against the Captivate, another phone for which I don’t recall seeing any ads, a phone on a much larger network than T-Mobile and on a carrier without any other noteworthy Android phone (whereas T-Mobile has plenty, phones which are often on television). That’s really the selling point on this point as there’s nothing extraordinary about the hardware versus the other top shelf Android phones. Doesn’t even have HSPA+ or dual core.

I am suggesting that if the Nexus S can meet general expectations and either edge out the Captivate’s sales by factoring in AT&T’s base’s size relative to T-Mobile’s — or without doing that at all, just a straight up race, if the phone can do that, it will be a much needed statement to carriers and OEMs that when they put their crap on devices they’re about to sell, they make those devices worse, worse enough that they risk driving sales to carriers who offer a virgin phone like the Nexus S. Maybe some of these asses will get the drift finally. And yes, I applaud Apple and Microsoft for getting a platform out while successfully resisting this garbage. But you’re no better than me, Focus owners, my phone came clean and though most Android phones aren’t Nexus Ones, most Windows phones aren’t Focuses or any of the WP7 devices, not by a longshot. We both have work to do in this department.

Conversely, if consumers don’t see anything special about this phone over the other options and it sells accordingly, that’s affirmation to the carriers to keep on doing their thing, bastards.

I don’t know what the Captivate’s sales figures look like nor am I sure how easily I can find data on Nexus S sales eventually but I am open to taking a thirty dollar bet with one of you on the Nexus S outselling the Captivate off the bat. Doesn’t sound like much of an accomplishment, but hey, the Nexus operation doesn’t exactly have a history of getting people to camp out on the streets.

Man I hate bloatware. Fortunately, I’ve forgotten what that suffering is like with my trusty Nexus One toward which I am beginning to amass a whole lot of guilt. I’m rationalizing it to myself as my phone’s not having a T-Mobile radio, not any significant deficiency with the phone itself relative to the Nexus S, and man oh man does AT&T still suck, believe you me.

So, thirty bucks anyone? And how do you think it will hold up against the MyTouch? Parenthetically, I’m concerned Samsung may have switched up the softkey lineup, but whatever. It had better not feel dinky, that’s all I’m saying.

Doug Simmons

12 COMMENTS

  1. Agreed that bloatware sucks, but not sure if its enough to make someone switch platforms and/or carriers. And as long as they can, carriers will continue to load up devices with usless stuff. Why can’t they just do the right thing and load their crap on top of the OS rather than embedding it within. Still achieve their objective without seriously pissing people off. Guess that just makes too much sense. Never mind.

  2. Well if Microsoft can add momentum to the trend Apple started of keeping up a bloat shield, and maybe RIM decides it wouldn’t kill them either to do the same, this problem, except for those who like what is the most popularly spreading (300K activations per day) platform, is starting to become obsolete.

    I also meant to get those who already have some last-year t-mo Android phone to get this one instead of the one on television. No idea though how much T-Mobile intruded on Android in any of their previous phones and if they did if they did it at all constructively or not.

    Also, Google. People experience Google experiences every day, generally positive experiences. Multiple times a day. Not just me. A “Google experience” phone, whatever the platform and whatever the included software, that’s a brand in itself that may be beginning to build up some weight to it.

    And if you poke around the thousands of websites out there (starting with XDA I suppose) you’ll begin to get the impression that the number of people out there who know and care about something like getting the only phone running Android 2.3 is higher than you might have thought.

  3. Nice, over 12 hours and not a single flame response /even though/ I did take a tiny little jab at Windows. That’s some kind of record for me.

    Question: What’s up with the whole Best Buy thing? Google TV (at least at first) and now this phone, Best Buy. No disrespect, Matt, but I’d much rather buy a phone, especially with my complex cross-carrier family planning and number porting needs, at a t-mobile joint, especially since the odds of that new t-mobile chick (or even Catherine Zeta Jones, I’d still settle for her) being there to sign my phone are greater than they’d be at a Best Buy.

    Is it a strategy or is T-Mobile simply not that interested and would rather push their MyTouch or whatever they’re advertising at a given time without diluting consumers’ brains with mindshare confusion or whatever between different top of the line Android items? If you didn’t know much about phones at all, which would you probably buy after seeing a similar ad with a similarly hot looking chick, the MyTouch or the Nexus? The Nexus, right?

    I hope they’ve got a few ads along those lines up their sleeves. Or at least more ads with that girl, whatever she’s selling.

    What’s up with me and that girl anyway, I keep talking about her. She’s not even that hot (she’s hot, but I mean extraordinarily wtf hot). They call that a je ne sais quoi I believe.

  4. Question which I asked to the fellas but could use some further clarification/recommendation from any of you on my situation: I’m N1 on AT&T, wife’s blackberry on t-mo with no data. I want the NS, very happily willing to split from AT&T (provided I can keep my number, gotta keep that number, unheard of 212 area code) and I’d like to get her one too either today or the weekend if I need her involvement and I’d like us to be on a family plan together whether she gets the phone or not.

    She’s not in the mood to go to Best Buy with me today to try to deal with this. Does that mean I have to wait until she’s in the mood or can I just waltz on in and walk out of there with a t-mo Nexus S with a sim with my identity and phone number on it, and then later merge our accounts into a family plan over the phone? Or if we both went tomorrow together, are the Best Buy people able to deal with all of that for us? Are they on the ball like that? When porting a number like this, can t-mobile make all of the magic happen for me or do I need to bring AT&T into this?

  5. i would not recommend letting best buy do your port over… also, AT&T doesnt need to be involved but you will have to give t-mo or bestbuy your AT&T account number, its on any of your bills or you can call customer care and get the account number by dialing 611 from your cellphone (yes even your prescious nexus1 without all the bloatware crap will still recognize the 611 number.) i seem to remember hearing your on your parents plan… you may actually need to get the account holder in the store before they will allow you to port the number, not sure on t-mobiles or bestbuys SOP but i would really say go to t-mobile store and not a best buy to do this… unless you can get blacktie, that might be worth the headache.

  6. Congrats on the Focus-In-Denial. If your wife doesn’t want to go, just have her call and authorize you to make changes to the account. My wife and I conferenced AT&T, so each of us could answer any question at that moment. On leaving AT&T, if you are not in a two year contract with AT&T, I wouldn’t involve them unless I had too. The T-Mob reps always said they could handle it, but I never put them to the test.

  7. its all good yss, and simmons, when you say “I am suggesting that if the Nexus S can meet general expectations and either edge out the Captivate’s sales by factoring in AT&T’s base’s size relative to T-Mobile’s — or without doing that at all, just a straight up race,” is this what you want to wager 30 bucks on, that the nexus s will outsell the captivate in the month of its release, or are you wagering that january’s sales of nexus s will surpass the january sales of the captivate? because i dont see how you could win either of those bets

  8. Bloatware, like spam, is annoying as hell. But it still exists because some idjut consumers make it worth their while to keep it going. If bloatware revenue declines, I suppose the carriers will make up the revenue decline somewhere else (e.g. rate or data plan fees).

  9. No, if bloatware revenue declines, they will just think up and add more bloatware, as long as they are able to. Keep throwing crap in their face till they click on something. If AT&T offerered some of their services for .99 a month (that’s all it’s worth, at best) some people might actually click through or seek out these tools. Then AT&T wouldn’t need to try the hard sell with the stupid free trials, followed by a ridicuous $9.99 a month.

  10. bloatware sucks, at&t sucks, and samsung wifi sucks. ergo, nexus one stays in, nexus s won’t make it in, and rooted htc desire z stays in pocket until nexus s wifi improves and tmobile officially supports uma on nexus s. then, n1 goes to top of the dev pile, htc desire z to craigslist, at&t to the wayside, and nexus s on tmobile in my pocket.

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