Today Google via its Android blog announced the Nexus 4, an unlocked pure Google Android 4.2 smartphone for $299 that will go on sale Tuesday, November 13.
Google with its release Nexus 4 by LG is the first super smartphone to offer buyers the freedom to choose a carrier without signing up for another two-year plan at a reasonable price.
We were wondering why Google decided to use LG to make its latest smartphone. Now we know why, Google with its Nexus 7 priced its tablet at the cheapest for the best specs when it was launched. Now with the Nexus 4, Google again is pricing the Nexus 4 at the cheapest price for the highest specs.
LG typically is known for less expensive phones and for texting contests. Google ran into problems previously with its alliances with carriers. Carriers dictate software, updates and many features of smartphones. By making an unlocked Nexus 4 for $299, Google is upping the competition and offering a contract-free alternative for those who like GSM networks (T-Mobile/AT&T).
The Nexus 4 will work on the AT&T network, but you will not have 4G LTE connectivity. Therefore the Nexus 4 is the best cheapest smartphone you can buy new for under $300 without a contract that works on GSM networks. Of course, the most optimal network to run the Nexus 4 is T-Mobile because you will able to get HSPA+ data speeds. Most high-end smart phones without carrier subsidies will run you $500-$600.
The pricing lets users forgo being indentured servants to a new contract with early termination fees while getting an excellent device.
Is it worth leaving your carrier, yet?
First off, if you have a grandfathered unlimited plan and you are happy with your service from major carriers such as AT&T or Verizon Wireless, there is no major reason for you to leave yet until we see what happens with the T-Mobile MetroPCS merger.
As networks are built out, we will be able to determine overtime if there is a cheaper alternative to the major carriers that is better for unlimited data. Also since the Nexus 4 is unlocked for GSM networks, you really don't have an economical CDMA choice for Verizon Wireless.
If you are currently, a Sprint customer and are happy with your service, the incentive to switch is not compelling, especially if you recently singed up for a two year contract.
If Google is successful launching an unlocked smartphone, we will most likely see more unlocked technology coming in the future.