NPR logo Gadzooks! Google Dishes News On New Gadget

Gadzooks! Google Dishes News On New Gadget

It looks like the next-gen cell phone wars will never end. But that's just a part of the technological game. And it's making my two-year decision even harder. When June 2010 rolls around, will I a.) jump on the iPhone bandwagon with my AT&T buds (despite the recent debacle in NYC), b.) make a return to Verizon's network and acquire the Droid, or c.) stay on my family's plan and ride the (inexpensive) T-Mobile wave?

And today's buzz is (sort of) guiding my choices for a new smart phone for the decade. Google's newest creation — The Nexus One — might launch next Monday. The powerhouse search engine is holding an "Android press gathering" in this neck of the woods on January 5th — two days before the annual Consumer Electronics Show in Vegas on the 7th. There's speculation that this is a possible attempt at impressing the tech geeks the Steve Jobs' way — drawing all the attention to your product first.

The Nexus One boasts a 3.7-inch AMOLED touchscreen, 5-megapixel camera, Wi-Fi connectivity, accelerometer and compass...and more. But the flashy features come with a hefty price tag: with a new two-year agreement via T-Mobile: $180...unlocked and unsibsidized: $530! If you're interested in whether or not the new Android phone is for you, check out some of the facts, courtesy of Gizmodo:

* There's only one rate plan: $39.99 Even More + Text + Web for $79.99 total.

* Existing customers cannot keep their plan if they want a subsidized phone; they have to change to the one plan, and this only applies to accounts with one single line.

* You can only buy five Nexus One phones per Google account.

* Google will sell it at google.com/phone, which explains what they were doing with that page a few weeks ago.

Still think the Nexus One is for you? Here's a kicker:

* If you cancel your plan before 120 days, you have to pay the subsidy difference between what you paid and the unsubsidized price, so $350 in this case. Or you can return the phone to Google. You also authorize them to charge this directly to your credit card.

Although I lost my coveted graduation present a few weeks ago — a Samsung Behold — it'll probably be a while before the upgrade to a phone I rely on for more than just calls and texts.