LG Says It’s Struggling To Keep Up With “Huge Demand” For Nexus 4

If you’re struggling to get your hands on the Nexus 4, LG says there’s a very good reason as the company’s they are struggling to keep up with “huge demand” for the device. Asked by CNET UK why Google is running low on Nexus 4 stock, Andy Coughlin, the head of LG UK said the phone “had proven extremely popular, and as such retailers have been met with huge demand…we are working closely with Google to ensure that those who wish to purchase a handset are able to do so.”

I think the real question is whether Google and/or LG properly predicted the demand for such a device.

“As with any sales process, LG supplies product quantities against partners’/customers’ (ie retailers, operators etc) forecasts,” Coughlin explained, going on to say, “demand via the Play Store has been very high in this instance.”

So, did Google underestimate demand for their premiere Android device? By all accounts, it seems that Google did estimate too low as they didn’t expect the phone to quite so popular. Ian Fogg, mobile media senior principal analyst for IHS, stated that “It’s hard to say whether Google underestimated demand, or whether they chose simply to have a number of devices available,” also commenting that regardless of stock shortages, “the fact that the Nexus 4 is high profile is good for Google.”

“All of this raises the public profile of Android,” Fogg said. “All of this helps Google’s strategic objectives.”

So while Google may be getting good press, the rest of us are left struggling to grab a device that may end up shipping sometime next year. Google didn’t have any on-record statement, but we suspect if demand continues to rise and stock levels do not, Google will have to say something.

CNET UK

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  • thepanttherlady

    I’m not sure how they could have underestimated demand given the pricing.

    This also baffles me: “All of this raises the public profile of Android,” Fogg said. “All of this helps Google’s strategic objectives.” Does Google have their head in the sand as to the bad taste it’s leaving in everyone’s mouth over this release?

    • Henry

      Makes you wonder if Google is selling this device at cost or possibly at a lost given their overhead in actually selling the device. So it’s not like they have a financial incentive to stock the device in large numbers.

    • whiteiphoneproblems

      Yeah, that makes no sense. I don’t think this phone has received much attention in the general consumer press, but rather mostly from Android “fans”… and the availability debacle is not raising Google’s profile with those folks!

      • Anonymous

        i’d say that’s only partially true. I know a lot of people that have ordered this as gifts or phones for family members. with the ridiculously low pricing, and smooth operation, this will definitely raise android awareness for non android fans

    • Herb

      I think they might purposefully have their heads in the sand. They are doing the right thing playing up the massive demand and I think it plays right into Google’s strategy. I think this gives Google leverage to sell future Nexus devices through carriers but playing by Google’s rules (no bloatware, wallet functionality, OTA direct from Google). This demand debacle does raise the profile of Android and I think it will have a positive impact.

    • Ford_Thundercougarfalconbird

      I think what he means is the general public hears that there is a huge demand for this device. More so than any recent iOS device. It tells people that Android is something worth looking at.

      • smylax

        “More so than any recent iOS device” is a gigantic stretch. I am an admitted Android fan, can’t stand Apple, but that is a huge stretch. There is a huge demand, but it still pales in comparison to demand for the iPhone.

    • Tyberious

      Seriously? I’d planned on buying the 4x, but that never made out stateside. So when I saw the optimus g, I was ready for tmo or at&t to put it out. When they made a nexus version, I was scraping every rumor or review site for info. All their comment sections were filled with lg hate, especially people recounting stories of the G2x. Many reviewers and speculators pooh poohed it as well, assuring that it would be the “worst nexus ever”.

    • symsoul

      I agree that the pricing is fantastic if you’re on a Value Plan like I am. But the majority are still used to their subsidized phone prices, which might explain why Google hadn’t thought this one out well. I know I’m chomping at the bit to get one yet don’t want to wait 6 weeks.

    • GS3

      I think it means that when there is a huge demand, it implies that the device is popular and a geat device, therefore will encourage or convince people that android/nexus is a good phone.. Because of this situation, it will help Google to improve their strategy when it comes to selling their phones in the future..

  • Tim

    My assumption is that based on their Galaxy Nexus sales numbers they expected a certain level of demand…

    • niftydl

      Agreed. The Galaxy Nexus was still mostly focused on hardcore fans of stock Android software. Galaxy Nexus hardware was okay, but not great (latest greatest) and at first they were asking full MSRP pricing for the device. Demand surely picked up when they dropped the price to $349.

      Latest hardware + same $349 pricetag with no contract = win for most people.

  • MacRat

    It will be interesting when they release the actual numbers of phones sold instead of the constant “high demand” evasive statements.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jamille-Browne/1184321457 Jamille Browne

      I hope its high millions but I doubt that maybe 1 million world wide but the congestion on the site the first day maybe 250000 units worldwide

  • fixxmyhead

    received mine today so i dont care.

    • steveb944

      Did you order during the first batch or restock?

      • tomnewtn

        Mine is to be delivered today….ordered from the restock.

        • Jordan Williams

          Received on Launch day by walking in to a T-Mobile store and using my upgrade. I love this phone.

      • fixxmyhead

        Ordered from the restock on the 27 with 2-3 week waiting. Barely got the email yesterday. Damn this phone is nice

      • remister

        I ordered on the restock for the quantity of two. I just got charged, awaiting shipping information now.

    • minioninnc

      Mine will be here tomorrow. Excited!!!!

  • zifnab

    Still haven’t received my order from November 13th… meanwhile people have received their November 27th and later shipments. I actually have a 2nd order from the 27th arriving today. I had to go ahead and put in a 3rd order and i’m going to wait and see which shows up first, an order from Dec 6 or an order from November 13th… My bets are on the Dec 6th order getting here first… I’m pretty sure my first order is completely lost.

    Google’s customer support number has been absolutely worthless. They might as well have an automated message answer the phone because they just give the same response every time “Oh your shipment will be out tomorrow” Or “Oh we see there’s a problem with your November 13th order, we’ll send it to a shipping specialist and will respond to you in 24 to 48 hours”… 24 to 48 hours passes.. NOTHING

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jamille-Browne/1184321457 Jamille Browne

      I’m surprised you actually got that response, everrytime i called for update they just told me your device is on backorder and will ship within 3 weeks backorder 3 weeks Call back tomorrow next week 3 weeks, Nag them daily show them you are serious

  • qpinto

    i just got mine today. ordered on November 27th. i see why this phone is so hard to find. it really has that premium feel that a pure Google phone should have. the sgs3 feels great but cheap because its glossy plastic in comparison to the n4. and it only costs 383 and some change for the 16GB off contract with the 2 day shipping via google play. It feels, business like and has the appearance that this is a device that gets things done. straight and to the point. the sgs3 looks playful in comparison. stock 4.2.1 > cm10 4.2 just in fluidity. cm10 will bring the heat soon and it should be an even playing field. but for now, hello n4.

  • Early_adopter_G1

    I believe they under estimated the demand for bloatware free Android versions which only the Nexus can deliver. Us experienced Android users are getting tired of all the bloatware. Easy to see why Craigslist customers are selling/trading their Samsung Galaxy SIII for a Nexus.

  • jian9007

    I’m sure that Google may have underestimated the demand. Especially with so many tech sites complaining about the lack of LTE (even though the official launch partner T-Mo has no LTE). No one cared if it had LTE or not because it is still in high demand. The iPhone 5 doesn’t have NFC but here in the US not many people cared as it’s not widely used here yet, so no one complained about that. The Nexus 4 doesn’t work on Verizon or Sprint so it doesn’t matter if it has LTE or not. Yes, AT&T has LTE in some markets, but they also have HSPA+, which the Nexus 4 supports. And of course it supports the 42Mbps HSPA+ T-Mobile network (obviously).

    The bottom line is, Nexus 4 has demand, and not just from hardcore fans. There are a lot of people coming from iPhones and other handsets to the Nexus 4. The general public want one as well as the hardcore fans. You can not find another handset that has the same specs for $349 unlocked. The only other quad-core phones currently available in the US are the Note 2, which is $649-699 unlocked, and the Droid DNA, which is $599 unlocked (and only available on Verizon). Yes, the brother of the Nexus 4, the LG Optimus G is also available unlocked (at Sprint and AT&T) for $549. That’s still $200 more, and without updates direct from Google.

    • Tyberious

      Don’t forget all those tards screaming because it isn’t a VZW device.
      And making fun of it for not having a removable battery.
      And complaining about the lack of MicroSD.

    • SkippyFlipjack

      I realized that the N4 unlocked is even a slightly better deal than I’d realized — with the contract price you’re paying tax on full retail, which tmobile probably calculates as their suggested retail, $499. here the tax is 8.25% so it’s 240 total vs 377 unlocked, or $6 per month for a 2-year deal.

    • CaCo666

      The Nexus 4 actually has LTE (band 4). I use T-Mo so when they roll out LTE in LA I will be one of the first to use it with my Nexus 4.

  • AndroidProfit

    this is the 4th Nexus device that Google has compeletly screwed up.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jamille-Browne/1184321457 Jamille Browne

      Funny there has only ever released 4…. Oh wait.. Well I wouldn’t say N1 wasn’t a success it got the manufacturers to compete on a higher level, in essence created brand recognition. Nexus S was/ So/so, it was samsungs first then they upped the ante on the galaxy Nexus though google screwed up by making it exclusive in the first few months. Now this Nexus 4 is an amazing device all around but Google is still new at this customer service type of deal… Maybe it is legit that they didn’t know the Nexus 4 would be a success or maybe LG underestimated the Nexus name. Might be the latter…

      • Jay Goodwin

        He said Nexus device. Not Nexus Phone. I heard Nexus 7 launch was also bad.

    • 21stNow

      How do you mean this? I didn’t have problems with the Nexus S or the Galaxy Nexus releases.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jamille-Browne/1184321457 Jamille Browne

        The Launch day is what he is referring to. Verizon exclusivity isn’t what nexus is about at all. I’m not sure how NS and N1 were bad though… Maybe NS didn’t live up to expectations but N1 was great.

        • 21stNow

          OK. I didn’t consider the Galaxy Nexus launch to be screwed up, but rather staggered. I had my GSM Galaxy Nexus about three weeks before Verizon Wireless released theirs.

  • nerdlust

    the demand for a nexus device was limited to the hardcore fan and android purist. now it seems to some degree the general has finally caught on. I have never paid full price for a phone and I have a year a left to upgrade my awesome sensation but I’m considering paying full price and getting this quad core beast.

  • tomnewtn

    First thing my N4 downloaded and is now installing the system update to 4.2 JB. Kind of expected that. Can’t wait for it to finish updating and loading apps so I can see how it sounds from the ear speaker. Nice build!

    • tomnewtn

      Leaving the thin plastic film on the back. I already have a TPU skin, clear with frosted back. You can read NEXUS through it no problem. Very cool and grippy (i-Blason SoftGel Flexible TPU Case). Tried a phone call with wifi OFF and while I hear nothing except what I should hear….ringing and speaking, it does sound a bit tinny? Or different than I am used to I guess. I also have a Note II and can tell you I love pure Android over that version, though the Note II is pretty amazing in its own right.

    • Nick

      Search xda and use Wugfresh’s toolkit to unlock and root it. super simple

    • tomnewtn

      Comparing the display to my Note II, it’s more natural, not oversaturated like the amoled, and therefore more sophisticated. It can strike the indiscriminate as kind of washed out by comparison, but it’s perfect. Looking at images in Flipboard and they look just right. Compared to my iPhone 4s display, looks nearly identical in most aspects except the iPhone display is a tad more cool or white, but just a tad. The iPhone 5 might be a bit more vibrant though. To which I say…so?

      • niftydl

        Aside form crazy over-saturated colours on the AMOLED screens, the eventual screen burn-in drives my OCD insane. I’ve seen screen burn-in on both the Note and the Galaxy Nexus.

        I believe the iPhone has higher brightness output, but it also a smaller screen.

        • tomnewtn

          Yeah, it’s more concentrated since it’s smaller and I agree with you. I was thinking that very thing earlier today. They are both a pleasure to the eyes though, while the Amoleds have looked a bit overdone.

  • bruce_leer0y

    Im so glad i was able to find a tmobile store that had this phone. The first one i went to didn’t even know what the hell i was talking about

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jamille-Browne/1184321457 Jamille Browne

    Got my Nexus 4 by ma side well worth the wait in every instance.

  • niididdy

    I don’t even know how this phone got so popular. I don’t see it advertised on TV or on any other main stream media outlet. I may be wrong, but I think This phone basically became popular by Android fans on the internet forums and my other tech news outlets talking about it. Does That mean people are reading more and more about gadgets/phones on the internet? I mean the most popular phones right now…or most talked about are the iPhone 5, GS III and now the Nexus 4. Am I wrong?

  • http://profiles.google.com/mrice.hill Mr. Hill

    What Google should do is limit the purchase to 2 per customer like Apple does. This would help make sure the people who actually want one to for personal use get one. There are many people just stocking up on these things to resell on eBay above retail price. It will continue as long as Google allows people to order as many devices as they want.

    • Prox

      They did place an order limit per account.

  • Todd_the_Hunn

    Yeah I just bought/ordered this phone . Kind of shocked that I have to wait a month and a half but my Nokia c7 could survive a nuclear winter . The more important thing is quality over quantity . Google has an idea of how many units they are going to sell . Don’t be fooled by this supposed shock or surprise . As someone in logistics , I would bet you a ham sandwich they had a rough launch date planned & supply was secondary . It happens quite frequently . When you consider Google basically breaks even on this devise it even makes more sense .

  • Rob Daman

    i just better get mine in 3-4 weeks. i don’t need to hear excuses.

  • SkippyFlipjack

    My N4 is on the truck for delivery. By tomorrow morning the low stock will be an issue I’m done caring about :D

  • JaredNY

    I’m thoroughly confused. Ordered mine yesterday morning and got a two day shipping notification email today. Is it just blind luck?

  • Spanky

    Remember the Nintendo Wii (and now, the WiiU) shortages? I have a feeling that Google is creating artificial demand by purposely limiting the supply.