Google delays Nexus Q indefinitely

The home-theater hardware looked good, but didn't do enough to justify its $300 price tag.

By Kim Peterson Jul 31, 2012 6:27PM
Google (GOOG) is trying to get into the living room, but it just admitted it needs to try a little harder.

The company has delayed the launch of the $300 Nexus Q, a striking piece of home theater equipment designed to stream music and movies. The Nexus Q won praise for its looks -- it's a simple black orb with a glowing ring of light circling it -- but critics slammed the device's limited function and high price.

The Nexus Q plugs into your home entertainment system and streams music and video to your television and speakers. A fine idea, but there were many problems, starting with the fact that you needed a phone or tablet running the latest version of Android as a remote control. Older versions of Android won't work.

The Nexus Q was widely criticized because it only played content from YouTube and from Google's music and video stores. It won't play music from Pandora (P), videos from Netflix (NFLX), or even music stored on the Android phone that controls it.

"Google seems to be reaching to create a counterpart to Apple's killer AirPlay and Apple TV combo, but the Nexus Q isn't even close yet," wrote a reviewer on CNet.

Other critics were more harsh. "Google must have bigger plans for this thing," writes David Pogue of The New York Times. "It's wildly overbuilt for its incredibly limited functions, and far too expensive."

Google listened to the criticism and decided to cancel the launch to "work on making it even better," the company said. The Nexus Q went on sale last week, according to PCMag.com.

The company had some good news for those who pre-ordered the devices: It will still send them out, but at no charge. They will get the Nexus Q for free.

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