Google delays Nexus Q, offers freebies in return

@CNNMoneyTech August 1, 2012: 1:23 PM ET
Nexus Q, Google

Google is sending its Nexus Q streaming media player back to the drawing board.

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- Google has decided to put its Nexus Q streaming media device on hold.

The search giant told customers who pre-ordered the device that its shipment has been postponed so the company can "work on making it even better."

Google (GOOG, Fortune 500) said it "heard initial feedback from users that they want Nexus Q to do even more than it does today."

Early reviewers weren't kind. The New York Times' David Pogue called it "wildly overbuilt for its incredibly limited functions, and far too expensive," while Engadget saw it as "high-priced novelty" that "feels like alien technology."

The $299 orb currently allows users to stream only Google-linked media, including music, movies and YouTube videos. It does not run outside applications. Another caveat: only an Android device can control the Nexus Q.

The price tag of the Q is heftier than its Apple (AAPL, Fortune 500) counterpart, which sells for $99 and connects with iTunes media. Apple TV also lets users run apps from other vendors, including Netflix (NFLX) and Hulu.

Google offered a big carrot to those affected by the Nexus Q delay: It plans to send its preview device for free to those who ordered the gadget.

The Nexus Q and the Nexus 7 -- Google's response to the iPad -- are part of Google's expanding foray into the hardware world. The company recently acquired Motorola for $12.5 billion, giving the firm the tools to manufacture its own gadgets. To top of page