The Nexus 4 smartphone, from Google, but built by LG, is elegant. No, it is downright awesome. I’ve had a loaner test unit for well over a month and it just feels right in the hand. The camera is a dream to use, too.
Besides all the tech specs that make it a fast device that is easy to use and intuitive, it comes unlocked and contract-free. Sure, you are buying the device with cash up front, but it saves you in the long term by allowing you the freedom to jump carriers. (Jump to end of post if you are looking for the TechCrunch contest info).
I believe this phone offers business owners a chance to save money and get a terrific mobile computing device at the same time. After all, it is more than just a phone. I hear from many small biz owners who want out of the major carrier locked plan options and Google clearly has heard this refrain, too.
As readers may remember, I’m a big fan of the new Ting mobile phone service (briefly reviewed here in late September with a Samsung Galaxy S III): What Phone Should I Get?. Ting offers a terrific a la carte pricing plan that I really like for small business owners looking to keep phone costs down.
I’m still trying to figure out if I could purchase another Ting phone, swap out the SIM card, and make the Nexus 4 into a Ting phone. This post will be updated if I successfully achieve that goal. The company sent me a loaner phone and I’m on the $16/month for my business cell phone plan test with Ting. I love that I can change options easily without creating a new contract.
Since Google sent me the Nexus 4 to evaluate for my other small business columns (and sadly it goes back at some point in the near future), I have been using it with either Google Talk or Skype on wifi-only. But, figuring out where to go to get the SIM card set up takes a bit of, well, Googling.
The best post I found about setting up this unlocked phone is from J.R. Raphael at ComputerWorld in his post: Google’s Nexus 4: Understanding Your Carrier Options. In a nutshell, he recommends purchasing a simple prepaid cell phone plan from Straight Talk or a regular monthly plan from T-Mobile. Plus, you can follow some of his other in-depth posts for more ideas on how to save on your cell phone bill.
Head to this official Google page for all the details about the Google Nexus 4. Just a few of the highlights:
Chris Velazco at TechCrunch did a super in-depth review in November and it covers just about anything you might wonder about this new phone. Nexus 4 Review: Not Exactly Perfect, But Close Enough For Me.
The last cool thing to know about the Nexus 4, if you are in the market for a personal or a business mobile phone is that TechCrunch is giving one away on New Year’s Eve. It is partly a contest to build Facebook likes, but hey, that’s one of the games these days. Read the contest details here: TechCrunch Giveaway: Nexus 4 And Nexus 10 #TechCrunch.
If you are a business owner looking to save money on a cell phone plan by purchasing an unlocked phone up front, the Google Nexus is one high-end phone to consider. LG has done a fine job of making a phone that competes with Apple’s iPhone, in terms of eye candy and technical chops, though many of my Apple buddies prefer the smaller form factor of the iPhone. The Google Nexus 4 is a powerful phone and handheld computer for those days where you are mobile and without a tablet or laptop.