While mobile phone reviewers are still pleasantly surprised when they encounter a phone that incorporates Android’s 2.2 version, the Google Nexus S is taking things to the next level, offering Android 2.3.
‘Gingerbread’ as it is called, is not the only new thing on the phone – it also boasts new hardware, NFC. NFC you ask? It stands for Near Field Communications apparently, It’s a short-range wireless technology already used in Japan and lets you use your phone as a travel ticket, to make small payments and scan over adverts to get more information about a product. You could, for example, scan a film poster and view a trailer for the movie on your phone. Nifty. You can expect to see it filtering on to the likes of BlackBerry and Nokia handsets next year.
The Nexus S is Google’s second foray into the mobile phone market – its first failed to set the world alight, and as Google has chosen to distribute solely through Carphone Warehouse, which doesn’t have a huge slice of the market, we wonder if history is to repeat itself.
However, maybe customers will be lured by what its makers claim is the world’s first 4in curved touchscreen display, as well as front and rear facing camera. It has been built with the help of Samsung and is part of the Galaxy S range of phones.
Gingerbread is likely to appear on most Android phones in the next few weeks and months, so if you don’t want to splash out the just-under 550 quid, you might just wait for Gingerbread to hit other Android devices.
In the UK, the Nexus S will be free on £35 per month contracts or unlocked for £549. It is likely to be available after December 20, but pre-orders are being taken now.