This week Google started selling their Nexus Q, the “first social streaming media player”, for $299 and they expect orders to start shipping in 2-3 weeks. Google’s Nexus 7 tablet has been a massive hit and retailers have had trouble keeping it in stock, but don’t expect that problem with the Nexus Q.
I was provided with a review unit of the Nexus Q when I attended Google IO and it’s one of the most confusing Android products I have ever tested. It is not confusing to operate, but I am baffled trying to understand who is going to purchase this product.
The Nexus Q streams media from Google Play and YouTube, and that’s about it. The same tasks can be accomplished with a $99 Google TV box, which also includes a ton of additional features like Google’s Chrome browser with Adobe Flash Player, on-demand gaming with OnLive, streaming movies from Amazon and Netflix, and thousands of apps from the Google Play store.
I forced myself to use the Nexus Q for a couple of days and I was extremely disappointed with the experience. Streaming a movie was nearly unwatchable because it kept skipping and buffering, and it was annoying to have to switch inputs on my entertainment system. It didn’t take long for me to return to my Google TV, and then I boxed up the Nexus Q to give it to my brother Clark.
Surely someone will purchase the Nexus Q and eventually tell me they love it, but I see no reason to recommend the device in its current state to any of my friends. If you plan to purchase the Nexus Q, please tell us why in the comments below.