Google phone to bypass SA

2010-01-06 16:14

Johannesburg - The Nexus One smartphone, unveiled by Google and its partner HTC on Tuesday, will not available in South Africa.

Leaf, the exclusive distributor of HTC products in South Africa, has confirmed there are no plans to launch the device locally and is uncertain if there ever will be.

At launch, only users in the US, UK, Singapore and Hong Kong will be able to order the device. It will retail for $529 (about R3 800) or as part of a two-year contract.

Google said in a statement it plans to "add more operator partners in the US and internationally", but could not comment on plans for South Africa.

The device runs the Android operating system which was developed by Google and the Open Handset Alliance.

Unlike other Android-based smartphones from HTC and other vendors, Google is accounting for the hardware and will sell the Nexus One on its website.

The Nexus One marks Google's debut in consumer hardware. The search giant is also working on a tablet computer device with HTC that will be launched later in 2010.

"Nexus One is the first in what we expect to be a series of products, which we will bring to market with our operator and hardware partners," said the company.

"Our plan is to bring these devices to more countries for more consumers to enjoy," it said.