AH Primetime: The Curious Case of Verizon, Stock Android Devices, and a Refusal to Embrace Change

AH Primetime is a fancy term for editorial here at Android Headlines. Keep in mind when reading this, that most of it is based on personal opinion alone- mine.

Oh Verizon, you sad old dog you. The times are changing, waves are rocking the boat and you're still doing the same things you always have. Verizon may be one of the largest wireless carriers in the US, but they certainly make some of the... well, let's just say they don't make the smartest moves in the industry.

During a time when virtually every other carrier is embracing the true state of Android, Verizon seems fit to deny that it even exists. What do I mean by that exactly?

Well, pretty much every other carrier will now be offering a Google edition handset. Some carriers will even offer multiple handsets running a stock Google experience. Verizon on the other hand, will not be one of those carriers. In fact, the last time Verizon even offered a Nexus device was when the Samsung Galaxy Nexus launched.

It's sad really when you think about it. A stock Android handset from Verizon would surely go bonkers in terms of sales. They do have a fairly large user base, and I know I damn well would purchase a Google edition handset if they offered it. The stock user experience isn't the only reason to pick up a vanilla Android handset. Personally, I would love a Google edition through Verizon because it would be devoid of all the bloat and useless crap that Verizon just loves to install on their devices.

A proprietary app for ringtones? Another proprietary app for Verizon's navigation services? Yet another proprietary app to deal with my Verizon account? Have these guys (and gals) even heard of Google Maps, or the internet? I'm willing to bet a lot of them don't even have a clue what a mobile web browser is, I mean seriously.

All gripes aside, the only pure Android handset that Verizon currently offers is the now 18-month-old Galaxy Nexus. They never even made a peep about offering the LG Nexus 4. What does that mean on a grand scale? Will Verizon ever see another stock Android handset again?

I can't answer either of those questions for sure, because I don't really know. What I do know however, is that if Verizon doesn't get with the times they're going to start bleeding subscribers. No, I'm not na¯ve enough to believe that everyone is going to leave just because they can't get a stock Android handset. I'm also referring to all of the others features the other carriers currently offer.

Personally, T-Mobile's new 'Uncarrier' image really has me straining my neck. My contract is up with Big Red and I already have plans to jump ship and defect to T-Mobile. In addition to not being bogged down by the pesky contract terms, I will also be able to upgrade whenever the hell I want. All it takes is a device trade-in and a little extra added to the monthly payments. I'm down with that.

My daily is the Droid Bionic and I've been rocking this sad POS for two years. Bogged down by Verizon's contract, I can't even begin to tell you the atrocities I dealt with (yes I know there are people out there in the world dealing with much more, you're missing the point). This handset would have been discarded in just months had I known better.

The real point here is that Verizon needs to do something, and they need to do it fast. I know I'm not the only one that can see Big Red is way behind the curve.

Will Verizon ever see a stock Android handset or a Nexus device again? Who knows.

Will things start to go awry for them if they don't get their head in the game? I would say it's guaranteed to happen. For your sake, let's hope you paid attention to all of that Red.

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About the Author

Briley Kenney

Associate Editor
Briley is a modern tech/gaming journalist, and electronic gadget enthusiast. All you need to know is that he's a self-proclaimed wordsmith climbing his way to the top. Briley writes for several online publications including Android Headlines, Dottech, The Tech Labs and more. Recently he served as a content writer for the game Tales of Illyria, and he also designed the web portal for the game.
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