Another year brings us another unavailable Nexus smartphone from Google. The company has for the past few years released its developer device in November. Like the Nexus 4 and Nexus 5 before it, the Nexus 6 is officially "for sale" even though it is practically impossible to buy.
Google began accepting preorders for the Nexus 6 smartphone on October 29, but quickly sold through its initial stock. It was available for purchase for mere minutes. Since then, the company posted a message stating: "We are out of inventory. Please check back soon." It turns out "soon" means each Wednesday.
A new message appeared on the Nexus 6 website this week suggesting the company is working to make more units available for purchase once a week:
We are getting more Nexus 6 devices in stock as soon as possible. To make things simpler for you, we will work to make more devices available each Wednesday and encourage you to visit the site then. The Nexus 6 will also be available in AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint, and U.S. Cellular stores later in November. Please check with your local carrier store for more information.
Google didn't say how many devices were available on the first day, nor did it say how many will be available each Wednesday. The company didn't say what time each Wednesday interested buyers should check in, either, but your best bet is between noon and 1:00 p.m. EST.
The Nexus 6 is made by Motorola. It features a beautiful 6.0-inch quad HD display (2,560 x 1,440 pixels), the biggest ever on a Nexus smartphone. The phone plucks its design language from Motorola's own line of Moto X, G, and E smartphones, which means it has an aluminum frame and curved back to more easily rest in the owner's palm.
The Nexus 6 includes stereo speakers with high-fidelity sound. The 3,220 mAh battery is good for a full day of use, and the Nexus 6 supports Qualcomm's Quick Charge technology. Motorola claims just 15 minutes of charging time nets owners six hours of use. The camera captures 13-megapixel images, and it includes optical image stabilization and HDR+ for better low-light shots. The device also boasts a 2.7 GHz quad-core Snapdragon 805 processor from Qualcomm -- one of the best available -- and 3 GB of RAM.
[Want something bigger? Read Nexus 9 Tablet: First Impressions.]
How much does it cost? The unlocked GSM version is selling for a whopping $649. That's $250 more than last year's Nexus 5. If you're wondering why there's such a big jump in price, it's because the N6 is a spec monster. It puts most competing devices to shame. When asked about the high price, Google said so few people buy the unlocked version of the device that it made more sense to make the best device it could rather than an affordable one. Google fully expects most people to buy the Nexus 6 through their wireless network operators, where the contract price is $199. AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and US Cellular will launch sales of the Nexus 6 later this month. Ostensibly, the carriers will have plenty of stock to go around.
The Nexus 9 became available for sale this week. The 16 GB WiFi model costs $399, and the 32 GB model costs $479. The Nexus 9 doesn't support memory cards, but the 32 GB model is probably your best bet. The LTE version of the N9 is not yet available. It will cost a hefty $599.
I tested the Nexus 9 for several days and found it to lag the iPad Air's experience. It initially had a broad range of software bugs that were sorted out by a system update. The device no longer crashes or freezes, but I continue to see slow WiFi performance.
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