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Nexus One test: faster, better screen than iPhone

updated 04:05 pm EST, Wed December 23, 2009

Google phone considered real challenger

Google's Nexus One phone has been given a detailed if early test today that suggests it may be the definitive Android device. The hands-on at Gizmodo notes that the combination of Android 2.1 and the 1GHz Snapdragon processor makes it faster than not only the Motorola Droid but also the iPhone 3GS, particularly on the web. While the iPhone's Safari browser remains faster at JavaScript, the Nexus One is on average "a few seconds" faster than Apple's device with the same connection.

HTC's phone for Google is equally helped by its AMOLED screen, which is not only slightly larger (at 3.7 inches versus 3.5) but produces a much higher contrast ratio with more vivid colors and a brighter picture. Its resolution is roughly the same as that of the Droid's same-size 854x480 LCD.

The on-screen keyboard is characterized as "fine" but better than the relatively cramped software layout on the Droid.

Uniquely, Android 2.1's backgrounds are not only optionally animated but can even respond directly to user behavior: tapping outside of icons creates a "ripple" effect, and visualizers can respond to music or other audio events. It's not yet clear if any other phones with the same OS will share the feature set.

To date, the only clear limitations are a strictly average 5-megapixel camera, albeit with flash, and a lack of full multi-touch support in at least the US-bound version due to Apple's iPhone patents. The Droid has faced a similar limitation in the US as its international counterpart, the Milestone, also has full support for at least two-finger input.

As a result of the tests, the phone when released stands to garner significant attention when it's released as early as January 5th as it stands to not only address limitations of earlier Android phones but also provide the most important "halo" phone for Google's platform so far. Until the Droid's arrival in November, Android phone sales were dominated almost exclusively by mid-range phones like the Hero and Magic that have only had a minimal impact on luring customers from competitors.

By Electronista Staff


  1. TiberiusMonkey

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jul 2008


    Next iPhone.

    By the time we see this, I think we'd have a new iPhone out so we'll see how it stacks up to the new iPhone rather than the current model. I'm looking forward to seeing them both next year as my O2 contract is up in Jan, so I'll be set for another phone upgrade come the summer.

  1. wrenchy

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Nov 2009


    Ahhh patents.

    >> and a lack of full multi-touch support in at least the US-bound version due to Apple's iPhone patents.

    Would be nice to live in a world where patents don't hold back innovation. Companies could use and modify each others ideas and the consumer would ultimately benefit. Imagine the possibilities...

    I know this is not realistic but it's nice to dream.

  1. macnixer

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Mar 2006


    @ wrenchy

    Patents have a value but they can turn troll too. Apple's multi touch patent is not vapor patent. Apple actually developed it and patented it. they also use it in real life product. It is what patents should be. Gives a reason to invest in R&D. No one stops HTC or Google from licensing the multi-touch interface from Apple. I guess Apple will benefit and that is why they have patent for it.

    Think about it.

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