Nexus 4 and Google Glass

Well, that was one hell of a week.

We were in the middle of Friday's (rather epic) podcast on the Nexus 5 and Android 4.4 KitKat when we reminded ourselves that just days earlier we'd been at the Samsung Developers Conference in San Francisco. So in the span of single work week we had an inaugural devcon from one of the biggest damn manufacturers of anything on the planet.

Then Halloween hit. It's kind of a thing when you have a couple young kids. 

A day later, we had the announcement of a new (and pretty major, imho) version of Android. And we had the announcement and retail launch of the Nexus 5.

And the iPad Air went on sale last week, too. Not sure yet if I need to get one — I'll probably decide I do just as soon as it's not easily available. But the initial reviews have me wanting to see just how light and thin that thing is.

Oh, and I finally got Google Glass. So, yeah. Just a few things to wrap my mind around this week.

A few other things on my mind this fine morning:

  • Daylight Saving Time is over in the U.S. If you've got any of those old, manual clocks laying around, make sure you reset them. Alternatively: Move to Arizona.
  • Best parts of Google Glass for me thus far: My wife looking surprisingly interested. My kids repeating "OK, Glass" at random times.
  • A good take from our pal Russell Holly on the Nexus 5 launch. I agree that things were a bit jumbled, but I don't even want to know how many moving parts go into the announcement of a new operating system version and a new smartphone — to say nothing about trying to coordinate them. Was it all annoying from a media standpoint? Yeah — if only because there were so many ridiculous rumors and misinformation floating around. But whose fault was that, I ask?
  • I do, however, still believe folks deserve some kudos for the mechanical parts of the purchasing process finally working as they should. And I also agree that I probably should have been more vocal in past launches when Google Wallet failed miserably. But what the hell. I'm feeling all warm and fuzzy this week. So, kudos, folks.
  • Speaking of ridiculous rumors and misinformation, Alex Dobie coined a great word this weekend — Baitsclusive. Sort of like Breaksclusive, only even more deliberate. 
  • I love having proper screen recording built into KitKat.
  • I'm digging the larger icons all around. I never thought previous layouts used the available space all that well.
  • It'll be really interesting to see what the manufacturers do with all these new toys, especially Google Now as part of the launcher.
  • And because you now swipe over for Google Now, that makes me hate physical home buttons a little less. I can't help but wonder if the change was prompted (at least in part) by the million and millions of Samsung phones out there. It's also a good change on its own, though.

So much more Android 4.4 to explore, folks. Remember that you don't have to swallow it all at once. Chew slowly. Digest. 


Reader comments

From the Editor's Desk: Coming up for air


If you think you had a tough week just picture us frantically mashing refresh or watching our phones endure a notification-a-thon. It was fun. Next week likewise when my 32GB Black arrives. Thanks for keeping on top of the madness.

I love the fact that he reminds us he has a job outside work. Makes us more great fun for all the hard work the staff does. Other, bigger, sites act like they are news robots.

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Why would a robot need Glass? Shouldn't that be built in or are you some sorta cheap Cylon sleeper agent? And if so, do you hear All Along the Watchtower thru Glass no matter what song is actually playing?

Phil 's office is in his home so I'm sure that factors into it as well :-)

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Phil 's office is in his home so I'm sure that factors into it as well :-)

Posted via Android Central App on my daily driver, the Droid MAX

Oh you should see my family, like the Google Glass, Google's new launcher has the hotword built in and out of nowhere my brother or someone will yell OK Google just to mess me up. Thankfully it only works in the launcher, plus I can disable it if I choose.

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Get the ipad air and FedEx me your older one or your Android tablet is preferable! Thanks in advance! Greatly appreciated too

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Fortunately in the UK we didn't have to suffer Google's checkout process this year. They announced Carphone warehouse would stock it, sure enough a brief jaunt in the morning and phone in hand. I wasn't the only one there, but it was hardly iPhone hysteria.

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Yes, same here. Tho I was in Telford and they had 10 in stock I was there at 905 and there was 5 blokes queing for one when I got there. I got 2 a white and a black one for me and the Mrs. Beats the whole waiting and ordering game.

Also as a side note, maybe because only a lucky few have the, yet but very little has been said about the difference between the two colours. The black has a soft touch back which feels quite nice and grippy. The white is made out of a different material its more of a matte plastic finish which is considerably more slippery in the hand.

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I wish this had been made clearer as I've ordered the white 'penguin' version and might return it for the black one. Would you say the white one is slippery, does it look as nasty as the white Samsungs?

Fortunately in the UK we didn't have to suffer Google's checkout process this year. They announced Carphone warehouse would stock it, sure enough a brief jaunt in the morning and phone in hand. I wasn't the only one there, but it was hardly iPhone hysteria.

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ALSO, just wanted to let everyone know; BaldwinGuy77 just finished and released the Shiny Rom version of Kit Kat 4.4 for the Verizon Galaxy Nexus with everything working. Phil and staff, keep up the great work of Androidcentral.

Works fine here, it's a Google+ link. Just a guy ranting about how it wasn't really a smooth launch, or even a launch per se... He makes some good points, but it's all kind of inconsequential in the end.

The larger issue is stock availability IMO, if they start hitting their projected ship dates and slowly whittle down the wait time thru November then everyone will forget the rest. If it becomes impossible to buy thru the start of next year (like the N4) then it's a big fail.

Hopefully retail availability helps matters this time around... I think the fact that it includes LTE AND works across three major carriers makes the N5 a much bigger deal and a more important product launch than the N5, regardless of the other tech specs.

Oddly, not enough has been made of that little fact in the press, and even Google doesn't seem gung ho about advertising that fact; provider compatibility was a tiny footnote on a sub page of the main landing page (and they even forgot, somehow, to list AT&T).

As of tomorrow, my HTC One will have had a great run. Truly an excellent phone. Hopefully the nexus 5 can top it.

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Right there with you. The One is a great device but I gotta give it up. The new auto awesome movies stuff they put into goog+ will soften the blow. But I have to say that I will miss BlinkFeed. It got a bad rap at first. The decision to not allow it to be turned off was a terrible one. But they fixed that in 4.3. Lots of news readers out there. So I'm sure I'll live without it. Nex5 here I come!

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The thing I'll miss the most are the speakers and the headphone audio. The beats software really is nice in both respects. Never used blinkfeed, although it was a nice feature. I'm sure the N5 will be well worth it.

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Yea. I can't let go of beats out the screen so I'm skipping the n5 and waiting on the next htc

Editor in chief of

The fourth new way of accessing Google Now just tells me that either the previous three were less than ideal (maybe two were, swiping up was just a bit obscure) or Google's analytics tells them Google Now isn't getting used nearly as much as they'd like... I'm banking on the latter.

Highly unscientific anecdotal evidence: My sister turned it off completely after saying it was creepy, and my mother thinks it's funny but just kinda ignores it (Google Now thinks her workplace is a friend's place cause she drives there every other day...).

For my part, I don't care for it spitting game results at me when I've DVR'd them, and I'd rather have a bit more control over stuff like package/flight tracking (using Shiprack/FlightTrack) and such; but I still use Now.

I am however a display buttons covert (after checking out the Moto X and G2) and I can't wait until next week when my Nexus 5 should ship/arrive. Not sure why I paid a couple bucks for two day shipping when it's going out on a Friday tho (and a week from ordering it to boot).

Possibly cause I'm an impatient son of a...

FYI, the new version of Google Now has an option of hiding sports scores by team just to prevent spoilers.

Cool feature, I'd have to hide all NBA teams tho since I'm a basketball junkie and the games kinda pile up on the DVR... :P (and forget about it during playoffs)

I think in the US Google now is way better. In the UK all it seems to do is tell me the weather, which is usually wrong, sports scores (which take forever to update) and how long it will take to get to work. I leave it enabled hoping that functionality will improve.

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Hey, congrats on getting Glass, Phil! There's a Google+ Community for it (just search Glass Explorers). Can't wait to see your thoughts on it, and welcome to the group of Glass Explorers! BTW, have you tried the mono-earbud yet? I'm not sure if I should switch or not.

Having recently gotten a Moto X and being on Verizon has made the release of the Nexus 5 a much easier event to handle. It will be a different story when the new Nexus 10 comes out.

I prefer Hawaii over Az any day just to avoid daylight savings. Also being in Hawaii is like a Giant Warm Hug From God.

Regarding Google Now in the launcher, I personally hope Google ups their own game. Sitting here in Sweden I mostly use Google Now to display the weather. I guess it would do a bit more if I had it on a phone and not just my Nexus 7. I have seen it tell the time for the buss now and then.

But overall compared to how it works in the U. S it doesn't do that much. We didn't even have Knowledge Graph when Now launched. So when we got Google Now it only displayed standard search result. Which kind of destroyed its purpose.

So my opinion is that Google should "fix" Google Now for the rest of the world first, then put it in the launcher. Because I think quite a few will be a bit upset when a broken feature takes up that much space...

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It would be really interesting to line up all the rumors and see if they were true or false.

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I think it would be interesting to see what your girls would do with G-glass. It might transform the way you feel about it. An alternative viewpoint can be very revealing.

Awesome A C

Worlds largest Internet company keeps their website going at launch. Great success.

Last week: Wtf blackberry can't even push out 10 million downloads of bbm at the same time, I have to be on a wait list. Epic failure!

Phil, U have the google glass? So you really paid that huge amount of money? Waouh

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Lol. News flash. Phil gets paid! And they buy all the shit for him to review. Now that $950 fully loaded iPad Air is on him.

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You know it caraser891! Was @ the parade yesterday. I'll never get tired of seeing those duckboats roll down Boylston St!

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I don't understand why you would be so happy to use "Google Glass". Don't you know that thing has a tiny sensor build into it and it looks directly into your pupil and past your cornea and reads the data in your mind! I mean C'mon, the thing is made by Google. A company with a funny name that starts with a "G". Just like another company with a funny name that starts with a "G", like GEICO, which stands for Government Employee's Insurance COmpany! Google is always out trying to collect copious amounts of information, and do you know why...? GOOGLE stands for Government Owned & Operated Gigantic Library of Everything! Forget about the NSA, they are just a flanker group to draw attention away from the real threat to your privacy. You folks are so excited about this Nexus 5 and Google NOW, they are just more tools that are used to spy on you, and the kicker is, you are willing spend your own money to help others violate your privacy! There are alternatives, if you need to speak voice with someone, do it in person, or if you need to do it remotely, use two soup cans and a string. Need to send a text message? Write it on paper with a pencil and clip it to a carrier pigeons leg, never trust the USPS. There is more, but that is all I have time for now, I must go update my Facebook status, and then Tweet out everything I've been doing for the last 2 hours!

Phil, nobody really detailed the "announcement" process of the Nexus 5/Kit Kat. It was all rumor with media outlets saying nothing(pretending they knew nothing other than seemingly planned leaks from Google) and at 2pm on Oct 31, it happened. Maybe I missed something, but it appears that media outlets were informed of the details including date/time/details, tied to an NDA, some even provided devices, then at 2pm on the 31st, started posting about it as it became available. Not that it matters, but just curious about the whole process.

Will this be the process in the future in your opinion, your opinion on if this is in fact the best way to do it, etc. Most companies are still announcing their products before roll-out, but since Sandy cancelled last year's Nexus 4 event, the Moto X announcement process and now this, the formal announcement of Google devices seems to be going away. I like hearing about it and being able to buy it right away, but there's something about the excitement/buildup to a confirmed event that I can't decide if I miss or not? Is that the trade-off?

I was thinking the exact same thing. All the sites were saying "we dont know!! when is it coming!!?? what is it?!?!" then at 2pm all the sites had their hands on initial reviews with edited video and such. Uhhhhhhhh, you couldve answered all your questions by watching your own video dude. Its all a big hype machine and we are just along for the ride.