Let's cut to the chase. Google is going to offer the Nexus One in traditional retail outlets. While they were trying to be innovative in offering the phone exclusively through their google.com/phone website, Andy Rubin (VP of engineering for Android) himself writes today that sales have been less than stellar and that users want to play with a phone before they buy it.
As with every innovation, some parts worked better than others. While the global adoption of the Android platform has exceeded our expectations, the web store has not. It’s remained a niche channel for early adopters, but it’s clear that many customers like a hands-on experience before buying a phone, and they also want a wide range of service plans to chose from.
So today we’re announcing the following changes:
More retail availability. As we make Nexus One available in more countries we’ll follow the same model we’ve adopted in Europe, where we're working with partners to offer Nexus One to consumers through existing retail channels. We’ll shift to a similar model globally.
From retail to viewing. Once we have increased the availability of Nexus One devices in stores, we'll stop selling handsets via the web store, and will instead use it as an online store window to showcase a variety of Android phones available globally.
Innovation requires constant iteration. We believe that the changes we're announcing today will help get more phones to more people quicker, which is good for the entire Android ecosystem: users, partners and also Google.
No word yet on availability. [the Official Google Blog]