October 29th, 2014 was the day that Google began to take pre-orders for the Nexus 6 in these United States. Depending on your source, the ordering period lasted for anywhere from 45 to 60 seconds. Not long after Google announced that it would be making more stock available every Wednesday, but these allotments have also met with terribly availability.
As I’ve mentioned in the past, I try not to get hardware through “special” means. I want to go through the same process as you, the same time as you, and undergo the same experience that you do. This puts me as close to you, the Pocketnow reader, that I can get, and helps my observations, editorials, and reviews be more in-line with what you should expect.
Here we sit, three weeks from the original release date for the Nexus 6, and it’s still almost impossible to get one. So far, Google’s Nexus 6 launch has been a spectacular mess!
The first area to look at is inventory. Products take time to make. As products roll off the assembly line they have to go somewhere, but it’s unreasonable to send a single product at a time. Similarly, cases filled with dozens of units of the product are still too expensive to send out. Even when several cases are loaded onto a pallet, the cost is still prohibitive.
In these days of over-seas manufacturing, you’ve got to fill a shipping container full of product before it’s affordable enough to ship. We don’t know exactly how frequently the production line is spitting out a new Nexus 6, but it doesn’t seem fast enough to meet demand – not initial demand anyway.
Google and Motorola also have the challenge of meeting carrier demand – and customization. Most of the major carriers in the U.S. are interested in carrying the Nexus 6, and reselling them to their customers. AT&T is reportedly going to throw its logo on the back, and we wouldn’t be surprised if others weren’t planning on doing the same.
What does this mean? Motorola now has to customize and custom-package the phone for different carriers – itself included. No, Motorola isn’t a carrier, but it is selling the Nexus 6 directly through its own website, though it is having just as much trouble with stock as everyone else.
A better way?
I’m not a “marketing genius”, I’m a web systems administrator and tech evangelist. I don’t claim to know all the ins and outs of selling a product to the public. However, as a member of the public I can say that this isn’t the way to do it! Releasing a small allotment of new inventory for customers to “pre-order” every week, with the majority not being able to, that’s just ridiculous!
Why not open the orders up. Let anyone order a product that wants to. I realize that when I get in line at the supermarket that everyone who got in line before me is going to get their items before I do, however, I’m still in line and know that I’ll get my turn. Doing this for online orders would allow Google to cash in on the pre-release hype, and presumably enable them to sell more units, while reducing customer frustrations and more accurately measuring how many units the company needs to have made, all at the same time!
Regardless of the reason, Google should, at the very least, give everyone who ordered a Nexus 6 a replacement F5 button for their keyboards.