Google has admitted defeat after four months since the opening of its online Web store. The Internet giant had hoped its ambitious plan to change the face of retailing would have resulted in an increase in sales and a new way of buying smartphones.
It was announced on Friday that Google will be ceasing to sell its Nexus One handsets through its online store and will be working with retail partners instead to bring these devices to the market.
Google Engineering Vice President Andy Rubin admitted on the official blog that “It’s clear that many customers like a hands-on experience before buying a phone.”
Rubin did not attempt to disguise the fact that the move had not proved to be a success and that it had not reached its expectations. Verizon and Sprint Nextel in the US had shelved plans to support online Google sales of the handset and thus contributed to the decision.
However, despite these setbacks, Google is still proving to be successful against its rivals in the competitive smartphone market, with gains made by its Android software against the likes of Research in Motion and Apple. The operating system is now the second most popular choice for smartphones, (behind the former above) according to research by the NPD Group.