Google to sell multiple Android 5.0 devices

Google could be about to change the way we buy mobile phones. Or at least, the way we buy Android phones.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Google is shifting its strategy in an attempt to create a 'united front' to take on Apple. The idea is to give multiple mobile makers early access to Android, so more phones are ready to go with the latest version of Android. It then plans to sell those phones directly, rather than going via the mobile networks.

That's at odds with the current policy of creating a single 'lead device', before offering the operating system more widely. It also means Google isn't planning to use Motorola solely for its lead devices if it's offering the new software more widely.

Although Google has declined to comment on the story, sources claim the search giant will work with as many as five manufacturers at a time to create a 'portfolio' of 'Nexus' lead devices (smartphones and tablets), which it will sell directly to consumers in the US, Europe and Asia through its website, and potentially through some high street retailers.

It will kick off with the next version of Android, which goes by the name of Jelly Bean, with the portfolio of devices ready for Thanksgiving in the US, not long before the end of the year.

The new Nexus smartphones are expected to be sold unlocked (with a contract) and would be able to run on multiple wireless networks by inserting the relevant SIM card. On the downside, it would mean a more expensive phone, as it wouldn't be subsidised by the networks. But there are benefits – like faster OS updates for example.

So expect a big launch event from Google in autumn – and a plethora of Android devices to tempt you over the Christmas period.

Source: Wall Street Journal

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