Google’s Nexus S has an uphill battle for consumer recognition

Beautiful picture but most people will never see it.

Google’s Nexus S, announced today, should have been a major announcement.  Not only was it the announcement for the best new phone on the markey sporting Google’s Android operating system, but it was the recognition of a new version of Android: Gingerbread, version 2.3.  Instead, the announcements were relagated to Google’s blog and a Nexus S site hosted by Google.  What this communicated was the fact the Google hasn’t learned anything from the launch of the Nexus One.

When the Nexus One was announced, the marketing was just as bad, resulting in bad sales and an admitted failure by Google. This was especially true due to the fact that the only sales outlet was Google’s own site. Consumers did not take to this form of purchasing well since trying a phone before buying it is important in this new smartphone era. This time around, Google has done the work of contracting a partner in the retail realm, Best Buy, and they’ll be selling it unlocked or under contract with T-Mobile. However, in order to sell the Nexus S well and make it a success, Best Buy, Samsung, and Google have to work together to get mass recognition of the phone without selling it at carrier specific locations.

The other thing that Google is terrible at, and the reason why Google doesn’t produce applications that blow other competitors away most of the time (see Google’s eBookstore), is customer service. The Digital Reader blog touched on this item regarding Google’s eBookstore and the fact that it is not a threat to the Kindle.

I recall back when Google were selling movies online, and what happened when they canceled the service. Anyone who’d bought one was simply SOL. Google only reversed their position after a public outcry.

I recall when Google killed a bunch of music blogs without warning, and I recall how several never did get back online (in spite of following Google’s procedures).

I recall a bunchaton of stories about owners of Google phones asking for tech help and the only response they got was a link to a FAQ (if that).

Taking that into account and the fact that there is no clear way to contact Google for the majority of its services, the Nexus One was Google’s first venture into direct communication with the customer and the reactions from the customers were not good. With these Pure Google” experiences, they are where the bucks stops for user interface problems and software bugs. So will users of the Nexus S be able to easily reach out to Google in the event of a problem? The general consumer should sure hope so.

In the end, the only thing stopping Google from dominating the Android phone realm is Google.

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The Challenges of 2020

TL;DR: Follow this link.

One of the craziest things about Christianity during the protests of the last few weeks is the fact that there are churches out there not discussing the issues honestly, not taking the time to have the hard conversations, not devoting their Sunday services to betterment of the world and people around them. If you’re church isn’t talking about racism right now, if they don’t mention that black lives matter, instead focusing on platitudes that equate to the all lives matter” sentiment, it is time to start looking for a new church.

My wife and I meet with my home” church virtually via Zoom since the pandemic is still a thing. Kimball Avenue United Church of Christ & La Iglesia Episcopal de Nuestra Señora de las Américas (KANSA, together) combined in a collaborative way to create a single denomination focused on the needs of their community. They follow Christ together toward the vision of love, reconciliation, peace and justice. The justice looks like the demolition and rehabilitation of an old church building and its grounds into a community garden and labyrinth open to all who seek peace through contemplation.

I give this elevator speech to mention that COVID has not been kind to faith communities in general. Budgets have been slashed, funding and grants have been cut, and congregations in need are also working to serve those in need, who are less likely to be able to financially support their church in these times. KANSA in one of the good ones. They speak truth, they have the difficult conversations, they preach in a loud voice every Sunday that black lives matter, that racism has no place in the church, that the LGBTQ community deserves respect and support, and that Jesus was a social justice warrior, who fought for the least of these no matter who they were, where they were from, what they looked like.

In fact, Jesus was most harsh to those who had the means to help and decided not to answer the call.

These systems of oppression we are protesting have been around a long time; they have screwed up a lot of lives, they have been the reason for revolution and the downfall of entire civilizations, they don’t work. We need to find a better way to live by supporting each other. And support has to come in systemic, social, financial, and political ways, both national and local.

I am not local to KANSA anymore, but I support their mission, the way that mission manifests in the world, and the simple fact that they follow Jesus no matter how ostracizing that position can be at times. Which brings me to the point:

Thanks to a $10,000 matching gift’ from an anonymous donor, the challenge has become an opportunity. Over the next two months, we plan to raise at least $10,000 to meet the challenge. Through August 31, 2020, every donation we receive toward our 2020 Challenge” no matter how small or how large will be doubled by the matching gift.

KANSA is hurting financially and needs support, they do good work and are unabashedly progressive in their approach to our world. Donate now and see your contribution matched to keep one of the good ones fighting the good fight.

Thank you for your consideration.