Not Enough Nexus 4’s to Go Around. Is Google Ready for Hardware Sales?

As the largest web company in the world with nearly two million servers at its disposal, Google dominates search and mobile.  But it seems that commerce is slightly out of the tech giant’s comfort zone, as many Android enthusiasts found out this week.

The Nexus 4, arguably one of the most anticipated smartphones to date, first made its debut in the Google Play Store on November 13.  The device, powered by the new JellyBean 4.2, sold out within the hour.

It’s not clear how many devices Google sold, but one thing is certain: it wasn’t enough. And it seems that the company hasn’t done much in the way of improvement since.

Earlier this week Google sent out emails to users who ordered their Nexus 4 two weeks ago but weren’t lucky enough to get their hands on it. The e-mail promised that the devices were scheduled to ship within the next few days, quickly followed up by another letter that said the handset will become available once again starting November 27 at 12:00 p.m.

Living up to its promise, Google billed customers for their November 13 order and sent out shipping confirmations yesterday morning. The Nexus 4 is back up on the Play Store and will start shipping again on December 15, but the checkout process is still plagued by technical difficulties and frequent crashes.

It’s not hard to see what all the commotion is about.  The 4.7-inch device features the latest Android 4.2 operating system, a 1.5GHz quad-core Snapdragon processor and 2GB of RAM, as well as full near field communications support. To top it all off, the LG-made gadget is available for a contract-free price of only $300.