The Best Smartphone You’ve Never Heard Of

John Gruber – Daring Fireball:

In the near-term, the challenge for Google isn’t making great phones. They proved they could do that with last year’s Pixel models. The challenge for them is bringing them to the masses. I don’t know anyone who owns a Google Pixel who isn’t involved in the tech industry in some way, either as a developer or in the media. No one. The Pixels are Android’s best answer to the iPhone, and no one knows about them.

From all I’ve read the Pixel is a very good smartphone. Its hardware is top-notch, and if Android is your OS of choice, it runs unencumbered by wireless provider crapware only on these phones. Combine good hardware, your choice of operating system, the Google Play store full of apps, and Google’s cloud services, and you have a terrific personal computing and phone platform. It’s a worthy competitor to Apple’s iPhones. So why don’t more people carry them?

Only Google sells them, and they don’t subsidize phone sales the way wireless carriers do. You’ll pay full price one way or another. Prices begin at $649 and, while that can be financed over 24 months, no discount or partial payoff leading to a trade-in is available. Android users are, as attested to by many app developers, cheap. As a group they’re unwilling to look beyond free and subsidized, so the Pixel has become the best smartphone you’ve never heard of.

#Google #Pixel #Android #Apple #iPhone #iOS #smartphone