This Hour in Nexus S: No microSD Card Slot, Samsung not the NFC Chip Provider, Best Buy Landing Page Live



It’s easy to get excited and overjoyed with all of the Android 2.3 Gingerbread and Nexus S news going out today, but we don’t want to flood our front page with it all. (And I’m sure you won’t want to see it all day, as well.) Here are but a few of the stories that have formed over the past hour regarding the Nexus S. Some as small as Best Buy’s landing site going live – something we figured would happen considering they’re an exclusive retailer in the states – and some as big as the confirmation that the phone won’t have a microSD card slot to expand storage.

In our list of things users and developers should know about the SDK, one of the changes highlighted talked about getting rid of the need for phones without a microSD card slot. “Ok that’s cool,” we thought as we imagined there would be scenarios where people couldn’t use microSD cards or they were quite fine with however much internal storage they have. But Google and Samsung really just needed a way to treat the 16GB of storage inside the Nexus S as an external microSD card because the phone sadly doesn’t support a REAL external microSD card slot. 16GB – while plentiful for some – just won’t cut it for others.

The beauty of having phones with expandable storage was the prospect of having as much as 32-48GB of storage for all of your pictures, music, videos, and whatever else you can think to cram into it. Sadly, this will not be the case if you opt for the Nexus S. That’s a big factor to consider when you’re at the point of sale December 16th.

Finally, through NXP’s announcement that the Nexus S features their NFC chip, we’ve ruled out Samsung supplying their own chip that they have produced (but have yet to mass produce.) It would have made a lot of sense for Samsung to be the vendor considering they manufacture the Nexus S, but it doesn’t really matter at the end of the day: it all does the same thing.

Quentyn Kennemer
The "Google Phone" sounded too awesome to pass up, so I bought a G1. The rest is history. And yes, I know my name isn't Wilson.

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  1. A little fail here, but 16GB is still more than the 8GB microSD I have currently. And I’m sure its a lot faster to access than the microSD card. I’m holding out hope they expand this phone to the AT&T/Rogers bands soon.

  2. Could be pushing more cloud services via a headset? Something else to think about.

  3. So as someone who stil hasn’t upgraded to a smartphone and has a rapidly deteriorating phone now, is the Nexus S worth it or will there be a similar Google-endorsed dual core phone coming soon?

  4. If you’re a Nexus One owner, this phone is disappointing (with no dual-core, no SD card, and no HSPA+).
    If you’re a G1 owner, this phone is still a little disappointing, but it’s still by far the best one available, considering it’s pure Android and will receive updates first.
    Solution: buy it and sell it next year on eBay when the dual-core, HSPA+ “Nexus-M” launches.
    A single-core Nexus running stock Gingerbread is still better than a dual-core Moto running Blur and stripped of tethering/VOIP and bloated with carrier apps.

  5. @ wwjgd don’t waste your time, if you want a sammy S phone just wait for the galaxy S2, double the specs of the nexus S, and will have the SD slot.

  6. no microSD? well so much for buying THIS phone. ill stick with my HD2(android) they just made a huge mistake.

  7. No HSPA+ and no micro SD card is THE deal breaker for me. I was planning to get the phone on December 16th…. as soon as Best Buy opened. Now I am not even considering it.

  8. What? No SD card I don’t know about that. And to cap at 16gig? I could see going cardless with 32 gigs.

  9. This phone will…..Suuuuuuuuuuck.
    I just ordered a 32gb mini sd in prep for this. On sale for 60 dollars. cant even use it! I have a N1 with a 16gb with like 10gbs filled up and looking for more space considering I dont always carry my zune around.

    And no Hspa+? Wth were you thinking? Theyre turning into Apple if they decide to release 32gb, 64gb, or come out with one with Hspa+ and slot next year with dual.

    They coulda held this crap, theyre not pushing any bars this time.

    NexS suuuuucks. (Compared to N1)

  10. And why do they keep putting out fancy phones that don’t run on 4.g networks? Is T-Mobile that insecure about their network ?

  11. hold on. 16Gb of storage is being treated as external??? So you saying it will have same issue as N1 where there always not enough space for apps, that can not be moved to SD card? What a bummer… besides that it is missing the HDPA+. I’m disappointed.

  12. UGGHH! This was without a doubt my phone and now no HSPA+ or SD card? This is a no-brainer, with so many cool features on Nexus S, how on earth does anyone let basic details like that slip through the cracks? NOW what am I going to buy? I need a phone this month.

  13. No man, what the heck…

    Who takes all this decisions?
    NO ATT 3G support…!
    NO SD Card Slot !!!

    Come on… this are like BASIC needs!!!!!
    Just imagine someone saying… baaah lets remove the sd card slot, they won’t use it anyways…
    how they sold the idea to commit such a fail… OMG… this is so wrong…

    I don’t really care about NFC, whats a phone without 3G coverage on your preferred carrier or without expansion possibilities…

    Not buying it anymore…
    I feel GOOGLE disappointed…. thanks God I didn’t pre-ordered.

    I need Android phone recommendations, any suggestions?

  14. I can live without the SD slot, 16g is way more than enough for me. My phone is strictly a communication device. I don’t (and refuse to) use my phone as a media consumption device. I like to keep my media on a separate device because no smart phone will ever sound as good as a dedicated media player and battery life – I don’t want to drain my batter listening to music or watching vids only to find my phone can’t make a phone call when I need it most. With that in mind I don’t need the space for music or video.

    Still on the fence though… Considering the above scenario I don’t need HSPA+ either because I rarely stream video or audio (thus needing faster speeds). I’m on the fence on this one.

    What I do find ironic is that the no SD slot seems, at first glance, to be a push towards the cloud for media. If so it boggles the mind why they would leave out HSPA+ as it would greatly benefit pulling media down from the cloud.

    Guess no matter how it’s spun, seems to be a fail on Samsung’s part.

  15. i bet the gps works right and theres no lag

  16. Maybe this is why Eric Schmidt said there would not be a Nexus 2. At best, this is a lateral move from the N1 and it’s clearly inferior to other comparable offerings.

    I half wonder if this isn’t an experiment to see how many people that they can dupe into buying a phone just for 2.3+ faster upgrades.

  17. With my 16Gb Vibrant and 16Gb Sd card I have 32Gb.

    No SD card = Lame

  18. No HSPA+ kills any chance of me buying this. What are they thinking?

  19. @WWJGD I have been with Android since the first day and I have read thousands of comments from people complaining about how they need the newest update. Being a Nexus One user I can tell you that dual core or not this will be the best Android phone for the next 10 months or so. One thing you should know about Android is that software always trumps internal hardware. There have been many people who have said that a Nexus One with 2.2 somehow runs more smoothly than a Galaxy S phone with 2.1 and the processor on a Galaxy S is actually way faster.

  20. No microSD card slot? Biggest fail I have ever read.

  21. @markitor, Samsung made the phone, not the carrier, brilliant one. No carrier would desire a quasi-better spec phone-but running on 3G. Samsung knows it will sell, since It still has more specs than most of their US Galaxy S line. It’s just “another” phone for them until their “next” phone.

    Quentyn Kennemer, just writing another article, in hopes that people will forget the misleading article you wrote earlier today where you claimed Sprint pushed 2.2 to the Epic?? Multiple readers are highly annoyed now w the misinformation, based on that article’s comments. Seriously, stop being a blatant Sprint phanboi. Report facts, not biases. Shameful.

  22. With regards to the HSPA+, this is supposed to be a global phone, and for example, we don’t have the network for HSPA+ in the UK, how many others do? Maybe Google/Samsung took the decision to use the older technology to standardise the production making it cheaper.

  23. I was very frustrated with the terrible build quality/buggy software that my Vibrant had. So much that I got rid of it and have been using a dumb phone until I qualified for another upgrade.

    I think the Nexus S is rather lack luster iteration to a legendary device (Nexus 1). I would have liked to seen a bump in hardware spec’s as well as more support for multimedia (better media player).

  24. If it has the same wireless chip as the Galaxy S variants, won’t it support all 3G bands? Hopefully that’s what they did with this, so it’s not as big of a disappointment.

  25. Seems silly that they wouldn’t put an SD card slot in a $500 phone. Personally, I don’t really care and I manage with the 1GB card in my G1, but I’d like to know why they opted against it.

  26. The more you look at the package- the more you realize this phone is complete junk. ONLY gingerbread makes is desirable!

  27. Can’t wait for the Nexus S code/rom to be ported to all other Galaxy S variants…should be pretty trivial and almost means free Nexus S for all current Galaxy S owners!

  28. i too am disappointed. No MicroSD. I have at least 25 Gigs of music on my $200 32Gb card, plus i have two extra batteries and car and desktop dock for my N1.

    Note to manufacturers, here is what we want on the next nexus:

    – 4inch screen (like the S) with iphone 4-like ppi (u know retina display)
    – hspa+
    – unlocked (so i can put in european sims)
    – 32Gig on board + MicroSD slot for another 32
    – better speakerphone than N1
    – processor with lots of gpu for nextgen games (maybe tegra 2)
    – 8 megapixel or MORE camera, with 720p or 1080 video recording, frontfacing camera
    – nfc, gyros, noise cancellation, and all the sensors, etc…
    – ability to put double battery
    – official accessories (docks, etc..), also include official back cover for double battery
    – bluetooth 3.0
    – honeycomb or ice cream OS version

  29. @Blest

    …uhm, ill take it.

  30. If it’s like the SGS, it’ll reserve 2GB of that onboard storage for apps and user data, leaving about 14gb free for misc. stuff, which is treated as if it were the SD card.

    Still don’t understand them cutting the external SD card, unless cramming in a flash and the NFC crap took up too much space, or maybe Gingerbread just doesn’t understand multiple SD cards

    If that’s the case, it seriously bodes ill for a Gingerbread port for the regular Galaxy S, and the future of Android devices, actually.

    No way I could fit all my content on a 16GB only device, and I damn sure don’t want to be using the cloud for storage of larger things like movies, CBZ collections, etc. Bandwidth usage aside, it’s going to be shit slow to pull that stuff down.

  31. nearly 2011 and no lte….FAIL

  32. I’m thinking of either keeping my G2 or changing to MyTouch 4G. I really like MyTouch 4G, especially if Cyanogen starts supporting it like they do with the G2. So far I’d say MyTouch 4G is better than Nexus S only because it supports HSPA+

  33. So I’m on the fence.

    I would have loved the three features missing: SD slot, HSPA+, and the dual core.

    The SD Slot is useful, not just because 16 gb is not quite enough space these days, but sometimes, the best solution to getting stuff on/off the phone is not wonky usb cables and wonky drivers, and not slow networks and dropbox, but to take the sd card out and jam it into a sd reader or usb reader.

    If I buy it, it will be with Phineas’ plan in mind. Use it temporarily, waiting for the next best phone.

    I do have some trepidation that the 16Gb memory will not allow for easy trivial install of many many apps. The worse part of the Nexus One is the limited space.

    I have really enjoyed my Nexus One and the quick OTA’s it gets AND the easy hotspot tethering.

    I am actually unhappy with HTC’s quality, the Nexus One touchscreen is shamefully bad.

  34. And I want to see more in Gingerbread/Honeycomb about Bluetooth Keyboards and or X Windows/VNC/Remote Desktop like screen sharing.

  35. G2 here i come!

  36. It’s funny that all the people complaining about this phone will be bitching up a storm when their skinned Android isn’t updated. The N1 isn’t advanced anymore but you could easily still say it is the best Android phone currently for sale because it doesn’t have any skin. Now the Nexus S will be the new top dog that every Android phone is judged by once it is released.

  37. @A&M (20): Yes, I am “just writing another article.” It’s my job. And I apologize for any misinformation from the Epic 4G story, but it was from you guys’ reports that I assumed it was being pushed out. (At least that’s how it was worded in several of the tips we got regarding that.)
    I then sought out more information and the most that I could come up with was someone had the link to the update file on Google’s servers. No one debunked this as being final, nor did they expressly say it only went out to one test phone, until AFTER I reported the story. And in the end, anyone who wants the update in question has it, so what’s really the issue here?
    I’m sorry you feel I’m trying to cover up for my “mistakes” by posting articles (that sounds ridiculous, btw), but as usual, I’m just doing my job. Nothing more, nothing less. My apologies for spreading the word that the readers (you) asked me to spread.

  38. @36 Your right I have been using Android since the first day and I get so damn tired of those people, they try to talk down on the Nexus One but in the end they demand the newest update.

  39. 1st of all I just want to say I love this site for the comments, 2nd, I just received my 32gb sd card last week cause my 16 filled pretty quick, so I guess I keep my n1 till the next phone comes around. Really tho, no sd card support apple. I hope all you vibrant fans know that this is your 2.3 and you won’t be getting it unless you buy this shit for brains failure.

  40. @Marc, if you could make that and into production, I’d buy it off you! Those specs are EXACTLY what I would have wanted in any SMART-PHONE!

    Fingers crossed that Google (perhaps HTC could listen to us more than Google themselves?). Hey, HTC, are you considering what Marc suggested? I would urge you to seriously consider these specs!

    Android rocks, iPhone suks.

  41. No SD card is risky for those who want to root it. I don’t know about anyone else’s phone, but my G1 has semi-bricked itself before running a custom rom, and I had to use the SD to card to unbrick it. (I honestly have no clue what caused it to brick either. I was just using it regularly, and when I rebooted the phone it was stuck on the G1 screen indefinitely.)

  42. This is the biggest let down of the year, 2nd biggest let down is all the tv networks blocking my Google TV box.

  43. So why would I give up my Galaxy S Vibrant for the nexus s? My first instinct was that the Nexus S would basically be the Galaxy S but with Gingerbread. But I had to get caught up in the excitement that a dual core and HSPA+ would be on it’s way.

  44. The Nexus S seems to be a double hit(using baseball analogies) due to the fact that this phone is not cutting edge without HSPA+/4G, an expandable External MicroSD card, and dual core. So close but the ball bounces off the wall and the play is held at 2nd. Even the MyTouch 4G and G2 made it to 3rd. They would’ve made a home run but they don’t have the gpu, cpu, and Super Amoled that samsung offers.

  45. @Quentyn Kennemer, good for you for owning the misinformation of your, “Official Android 2.2 Upgrade for the Samsung Epic 4G Is Here” article; however, although it is nice of you to apologize in the comments of this article, it would be considerate to do so within the 100 & something comments of your above, intial article, too. As some are flaming, in THOSE comments.
    So, what’s the issue(s)? “but it was from you guys’ reports that I assumed it was being pushed out.” Ok…the article title was not stated as an, “assumption” but as a clearly, stated fact-nor were other comments within: “Sprint has beat everyone in America to the punch” “..there should be no reason to not jump on this as soon as possible.” If you were tipped before doing your research-that’s on you; but, it’s not acceptable info in the way You worded it. Could’ve just titled it, “Latest Tip…” or “Rumor has it…” Journalism/Blogger 101. Guess, go write another full of unverified tips, lol!

  46. no SD card seems to work for Jobs. Don’t forget there are plenty of people out there who can’t even spell SD. Samsung/google obviously going after iPhone users.

  47. Nexus Against Galaxy S Vibrant
    +Get most recent updates first(obviously not getting froyo until the last of the fast androids makes this much more attactive. Still haven’t got Froyo. Thanks for holding us hostage Samsung)
    +Curved screen(who really cares about this gimmick)
    +Camera flash
    +NFC(Who cares once again)
    -No External MicroSD
    -No HSPA+ or 4G

  48. For me this comes down to the fact that if I could purchase Gingerbread I wouldn’t need a new phone over my Galaxy S. Starting to think that Samsung doesn’t want to cannibalize their Galaxy S line with this phone. Maybe, they will take the Nexus line along with them as they develop out their Galaxy line.

  49. Man I was all excited about this phone for a month or so and now it seems like there’s no reason to want it other than gingerbread (and that’s far from a deal breaker for me). No HSPA+ or a Micro SD is really a buzz kill considering the cost of the phone. In 6 months or so there will be better phones out there with both of these features, and when that day comes, I’ll swap my SD card into my new phone and have all my same stuff just as my old phone.

  50. who’s want a phone without this, No HSPA+ and no micro SD card, where is the most advanced technology?!?

  51. I am happy with my N1, so I won’t be buying this one. Anyhow, the biggest downside is that it doesn’t work with the 3 main Canadian carriers. I guess that Google doesn’t like Canadian developers.

  52. Not having a memory card slot could hurt this phone alot this is almost like the windows phones 7 where if you took one memory card out to put another in the phone wont work right. Good thing this is on tmobile ha

  53. This phone also isnt anywhere near as ground breaking as the original nexus 1 was what a shame google could have really made another superphone but once again samsung fails

  54. Qk-Hahaha!!!

  55. The only reason to go with samsung on this device is for all four major carriers and the screen. Verizon needs a stock android device plain and simple. I understand the rooting is an option, but I am tired of middle men. I don’t want a carrier or developer between me and google. Its silly to put another stock android on tmobile. They have access to the g2 and the nexus 1. The only reason I was down for this device was that it would come out for all of us.

  56. Despite its lack of HSPA+, Nexus S is still superior to all the manufacturer-hobbled, carrier-bloated android phones out there.

  57. I guess it’s a developer phone. Not aim for casual buyers much.

  58. Another reason Samsung made this phone almost identical specs to Galaxy S, so Google can fix the bugs for them :)

  59. Jesus, this phone is a dud. Does the world really need a 5th Galaxy S phone?
    The life of a “Phandroid” is full of disappointments.

  60. @A&M updated.

  61. No hspda+?
    No mirosd?
    No gtalk voice&video?

    What a f ?! 3 times netbook price and cant make an xmpp/gtalk/jabber videocall?

    Totally disappointed !

    obviously states that there is

  63. Absolutely just gonna burnt out. How stupid can google be? they could of overtaken the Android Market with this phone. No SD? Where the hell and I meant to put my 10gb of music without taking up nearly all my phone storage?

  64. I am confused by you guys. The Nexus S will HAVE Tri-band HSPA.

  65. Quentin, read that page again.

    The type of HSPA is HSDPA (7.2Mbps) HSUPA (5.76Mbps)

    Tmo’s HSPA+ which is what everyone wants is provides HSPA data rates up to 56 Megabits per second (Mbit/s) on the downlink and 22 Mbit/s on the uplink through the use of a multiple-antenna.

    I don’t think anyone expects a 56Mbps downlink, but I believe the truth is that HSDPA 7.2 is NOT Tmo’s HSPA+ network.

  66. This is a wonderful phone with a beautiful design and a few glaring issues. First, it is missing microSD. Second, no HSPA+. Third, the hummingbird processor is not moving forward. It has the best GPU in a phone so far, but it is a few months old and that is a long time in android years. But, I would have gotten this phone over my G2 if I were buying a phone now. However, switching phones is expensive and it is not really that much of an improvement. It also doesn’t seem to have swype.

  67. @Quentin NO, its HSPA 3g. HSPA+ starts at 7.2mbit down speed

  68. uh 14.4mbit sry

  69. HTC should have got the contract to make the new nexus not samsung. Stupid choice on google’s part

  70. I am very old I only have a phone that was used for getting ahold of me be the transplant center. I don’t know what an android is but I know they are high tech and I would like one but I would never figure out how to use it Yes it will be unveiled today i do believe

  71. Marc had he specs right- why google wants to call this phone nexus is the real question. They could’ve waited six weeks and made something very close to marc’s specs surely, with HTC.

    Eric Schmidt seemed very intelligent but conceited and condescending in his WEB 2.0 interview. I should’ve known summat was up when he was overhyping this useless NFC tech. This phone is so old tech that the NFC chip won’t even be used ffs. As soon as dual core is out (surely by the time of Apple’s iPhone “4G”), everyone will jump to that next device.

    All this phone needed was Orion and HSPA+ to be properly worthy of the Nexus label, why he failed to supply this is a problem to my “Google is infallible” faith.

    Nexus One was a iPhone 3GS beater, Nexus S = marketing fail. Google you can still save yourself, license a Nexus S+ with the real cutting edge hardware for AT&T’s network in Q1.

  72. Seriously are these specs for reals? It has to be a joke. I’m a huge Samsung fan and a Google fan, but this is down right silly. I love my Galaxy Tab, but I just can’t get over these pathetic specs.

  73. I think phandroid should do a poll to see who actually will buy this phone, even amongst all the Android, Google, and Samsung fans. I predict 1% if lucky.
    Samsung better deliver with Galaxy 2, this is outrageous.

  74. Nice phone, but not a replacement for the Nexus One just an alternative.

    I did think that with all the pre Gingerbread hype the UI was going to be vastly improved and the need for skinning removed. Guess we will have to wait for Honeycomb for that, just cannot see why Google kept this android upgrade such a secret as whilst it may have some under the hood improvements visually it not mind blowing. Perhaps my perceived expectations were set too high for Gingerbread UI.

    As I’m looking for better UI, I’m think I’ll give Nexus S a miss and keep hold of my Nexus One but at the same time explore what Windows Phone 7 has to offer.

    I’m not sure that I want to buy another from Google (designed) phone after the issues encountered with the Nexus One anyway.

  75. This is a great phone. I want one of these.

    No need for HSPA+ at all or do you all want 56Mbit in your phone?
    HSPA+ provides HSPA data rates up to 56 Megabits per second (Mbit/s) on the downlink and 22 Mbit/s on the uplink

    For the CPU it was a small letdown. They should have waited a month or so and released it with dual 1Ghz.
    BT could have been 3.0 but not an extreme letdown.

    16GB is good but I agree if it was 32GB then fine no Micro SD card would be needed. Now it is just the minimum of what most phones have.

  76. From what I understand it also only has 480i video recording? Can anyone confirm this?

  77. Major fail. I really can’t understand why they would leave out a card slot. I was really looking forward to this device but now I’m already looking elsewhere.

  78. Once my Nexus One gets Gingerbread there will be no reason to buy this phone. Once the My Touch 4g gets Honeycomb, I’m going there.

  79. Wth? no sd card slot? this phone sucks

  80. Effing FAIL! Just when I think I have found a phone that has it all….No card slot. WTF? C’mon Samsung/Google!!! Seriously, what drugs were you on? EVERY Major Android phone has the card slot. It’s one of the primary hardware advantages over the competition (read: iPhone).
    Just Fail.

  81. @A&M If you don’t like the way they write their articles, calling him a Sprint fanboy, or whatever you said, why don’t you go read articles from another Android site? There are quite a few of them.

  82. @ a turtle?? Sursly?? That’s your ID?? You bite midget butts! A&M spoke only the truth in the responses-you either gotta be a dum azz or sucking on your friends teets or other appendages to state otherwise, azzwipe! Quentyn has blatent bias as he only sees sprintless as the end all-govt bail outs and all. Stupid

  83. Hahaha, a turtle: eat me. You’ve no idea the issues your butt buddy caused in the aforementioned post. Slow your roll, until you know, girl.

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