• The Nexus S, the first phone to ship with Google’s Android 2.3 operating system (aka Gingerbread) is sure to be in demand, so Carphone Warehouse and Best Buy must be rather happy to have secured an exclusive.

    The Google Nexus S, manufactured by Samsung, can only be purchased from Carphone Warehouse or Best Buy both here and abroad (this includes Phone House stores in Europe too), with a very limited number of handsets available before Christmas. The phone will go on sale in larger quantities in early 2011.

    Pre-ordering is available later today from www.carphonewarehouse.com or www.bestbuy.co.uk and this is almost certainly the only way you’re going to get hold of one before the new year. The handset will be free on £35/month contracts, or available SIM-free for £549.95. Early adopters always expect to pay a lot for new technology, but that price is still a little surprising.

    The Nexus S is the first Android phone to feature NFC (Near Field Communication) technology, which can read information from ‘smart’ objects fitted with NFC tags. NFC tags can contain text, web addresses (URLs), pictures or links to videos.

    It also introduces the first curved screen to the world. The 4-inch ‘Contour Screen’ fits nicely in the hand, and fits equally nice around the face. It also utilises a limited edition, premium Super AM-OLED screen that reflects four times less glare in sunlight compared to a traditional LCD screen.

    Storage wise, the handset packs in 16GB of integrated storage space and flies along with a 1GHz Hummingbird processor coupled with a dedicated GPU for awesome graphics, including support for Adobe Flash 10.1. The battery should also keep things going for longer, thanks to a 1,500mAh battery pack.

    Other benefits include improved motion gesture sensors that can allow location tracking without GPS, front and rear facing cameras (with a 5-megapixel camera on the back that is accompanied by a LED flash) and support for video calling with third-party apps.

    Future software upgrades will come quickly too, as the phone offers a ‘Pure Google’ experience that promises updates ahead of the competition – as seen on Google’s original Nexus One handset.

    Owners can also enjoy great connectivity, with the Tri-Band 3G phone supporting 802.11n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth V2.1 and HSPA with 7.2Mbps downlink and 5.76Mbps uplink speeds. Sadly, there’s no support for HSPA+, although that will be less of a concern to UK owners where there are currently no HSPA+ networks in operation.

    In addition to Carphone Warehouse stores nationwide, Best Buy has UK stores in Thurrock (Essex), Hedge End (Southampton), Merry Hill (Birmingham), Aintree (Liverpool), Croydon and Derby. The Nexus S will also be exclusive in Best Buy and Best Buy Mobile in the US.

    More info: www.google.com/phone | Nexus S specifications

    Key stats at-a-glance

    • 123.9x63x10.88mm, 129g
    • 4-inch capacitive ‘Contour Display’, 480×800 pixel, anti-fingerprint, premium Super AM-OLED
    • 1GHz Hummingbird Cortex A8 processor + dedicated GPU
    • Android 2.3 (Gingerbread)
    • Quad-Band GSM (850/900/1800/1900) + Tri Band 3G (900/1700/2100) + HSPA (5.76 up/7.2 down)
    • 802.11b/g/b Wi-Fi
    • Bluetooth V2.1
    • 5-megapixel autofocus camera with integrated LED flash
    • 1,500mAh Battery with 6 hours talktime, 428 hours standby
    • NFC reader
    • 3-axis gyroscope
    • Internet calling support (VoIP/SIP)
    • 512MB RAM, 16MB Storage

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