Saturday, October 1, 2022

Google’s Worst Hardware Flop Was Introduced 10 Years Ago Today

The Nexus Q was such a misguided product that Google decided to pull the plug before the device was released to consumers. Ten years after it was introduced at I/O 2012, the $299 media player positioned as a “social streaming device” remains a unique debacle in Google’s hardware story. Say what you will about Google Glass, but the company’s first foray into wearable technology at least got people talking. In contrast, the Nexus Q was an example of what can happen when a company gets lost in its own walled garden.

There were promising aspects to Q; Finally, you can clearly see the groundwork and early DNA of Google’s Chromecast within it. But everything about the execution was fundamentally short-sighted—and a little awkward. In the promo video below that Google released on the day the Nexus Q was announced, someone describes the product as “this living foreign object.”

“There’s something inside it. It wants to get out.” All normal. Sixty seconds into the video, you still have no clue what the hell it is or what the hell it even does. Eventually, we learn that the Nexus Q” A small, Android-powered computer” that can play music or video from the cloud.

Over-the-top marketing aside, the Nexus Q was not well received. Written by David Pogue new York Times That it was “shocking” and “extremely made”. We have given it a 5. Reviews from cnet, Engadget, and everyone else shared the same consensus: Although its hardware was impressive, the Q didn’t do enough to justify the price so high compared to a Roku or Apple TV at the time. A tool that only worked with Google services was not practical or attractive to many.

Google's Worst Hardware Flop Was Introduced 10 Years Ago Today

The streaming player had to be manufactured in the United States, which undoubtedly contributed to its staggering price tag.

Designed by Google, Made in USA

But damn it looked good. The Nexus Q really gave off sci-fi vibes (especially when there were banana plugs and other A/V cables coming out of it) thanks to its orb-shaped industrial design and bright LED ring. This was long before Amazon came out with the Echo, remember. Q looked like something that could jack you up in the Matrix. And it was all original. Unlike other Nexus devices that were collaborating with partners such as LG, Samsung, Asus, Huawei and others, the Nexus Q was conceptualized entirely by Google.

Google's Worst Hardware Flop Was Introduced 10 Years Ago Today

it could be look familiar nowBut the Nexus Q had an incredibly cool design for its time.
GIF: Google

The most amazing thing is that it was designed and manufactured in the USA. Google never really highlighted or played up the US manufacturing bit — perhaps to avoid any assumptions that this would become a trend — but it undoubtedly contributed to the Q’s planned $299 price. (The original Moto X would later be assembled in the US, but the initiative didn’t last long.)

Inside the shell was an “audiophile-grade” 25-watt amplifier that could power passive speakers—this remains the Q’s most unique hardware component, along with connections for optical, micro HDMI, and Ethernet. According to hardware director Matt Hershenson, a micro USB port was present “to encourage general hack-ability”. The Nexus Q was powered by the same smartphone chip as the Galaxy Nexus. You can rotate the top half of the sphere to control volume or tap it to mute whatever was playing. Everything of a great living room device was there. But limited software limitations ruined that potential.

Google's Worst Hardware Flop Was Introduced 10 Years Ago Today

The Nexus Q’s built-in amplifier was an unusual inclusion. You don’t find the banana jack connector on many streaming players.
Photo by Chris Welch/The Verge

The Nexus Q only supported Google services, including Play Music, Play Movies & TV, and YouTube. There was no Netflix or Hulu, and no Spotify. Google had trouble installing an amplifier, yet audiophiles had no way of getting lossless audio out of an analog connector.

The Q lacked any on-screen user interface and didn’t come with a remote; You can only control it using a dedicated Android app. Some of them will sound familiar to Chromecast owners. But there was one big difference between the Nexus Q and the Chromecast, which came a year later, that made the $35 streaming dongle so successful. After learning a hard lesson from stubbornly supporting its own software, Google corrected course and made a massive push for popular third-party apps to adopt casting. And importantly, Chromecast supported iOS as well.

social streaming

In addition to the Nexus Q’s core functionality of playing music and videos, Google also tried to present the product as a social experience. More than one person will be able to contribute to a music playlist without having to move one’s phone around or scramble for controls on a Bluetooth speaker. Friends can share content from YouTube or Play Movies on the TV screen just as they were on your Wi-Fi.

This all sounds fine in theory, but again, this was pre-Chromecast. The process of “social” streaming was… let’s say, inconvenient. If you really want to create a “everyone at the party can DJ” scenario, all your friends Too They must download and install the Nexus Q app before adding songs to the queue. Still, reviews complained about the software being lackluster when it comes to managing music playlists. It was too easy to accidentally play a song and blow up the collaborative mix at work.

Fast forward a few years and eventually, the top streaming music services figured they could solve this on their own. Now, you can create a collaborative playlist on Spotify (or YouTube Music)—no special devices or random apps required.

Google's Worst Hardware Flop Was Introduced 10 Years Ago Today

You can spin — or caress, in this case — the top half of the Nexus Q to adjust volume.
GIF: Google

end of line

Google heard negative reviews and asked “That’s all it does?” Strong and frank criticism of the Nexus Q. As of late July 2012, just a month after its announcement, the company announced that it was postponing the consumer launch of the product “while we work on making it even better.” Early pre-order customers will receive the device for free as a show of thanks for their early interest.

But the Nexus Q never made it to store shelves. By the end of 2012, Google quietly removed the product from its website. In 2013, the company’s apps started breaking compatibility with the device altogether. With so few Q units in the world, Google wasted no time leaving it in the rearview mirror.

Google's Worst Hardware Flop Was Introduced 10 Years Ago Today

At least this disaster led to the Chromecast a year later.
Photo by Chris Welch/The Verge

After Google abandoned the hardware, tinkerers and mod developers spent a few years trying to give the Nexus Q a new lease on life. It built it on the CyanogenMod circuit, and one guy even managed to take advantage of that integrated amp to turn it into a USB audio device. But there aren’t many devices in use right now, so those efforts have largely languished in history.

The Nexus Q was a complete failure of a product, but Google wasn’t wrong about a “third wave of consumer electronics” that would make more use of the cloud to keep all your entertainment (music, movies, TV) at hand. , We’re seeing it everywhere today, and now you can add gaming to the equation. It was an embarrassingly wrong move, but Google’s canceled $299 media player showed consumers have high expectations of living room entertainment devices — and even giant tech companies couldn’t afford to go it alone. can.

Nation World News Desk
Nation World News Desk
Nation World News is the fastest emerging news website covering all the latest news, world’s top stories, science news entertainment sports cricket’s latest discoveries, new technology gadgets, politics news, and more.
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