Google put its second batch of Nexus 4 smartphones on sale in the US today at 12pm PST, but as soon as a minute later, the website was showing ‘sold out’ status for the device. Over the next few minutes, we saw brief flashes of ‘in-stock’ status, but have been unable to advance in the purchasing flow beyond getting it into a cart.
Some of our readers have reported that they’ve been able to add them to their carts, but then get a high demand error, indicating that the system was crapping out due to traffic. Which is more than a little ironic, given that it’s Google behind it. Some users have been reporting success with multiple refreshes of the page, when a device will suddenly show as in-stock.
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This marks the second time that the Nexus 4 ordering system has shown its lack of stability. The device went out of stock within an hour just over a week ago, when the first batch was made available, but the purchasing procedure was fraught with the same issues for many.
We’ve reached out to Google to see whether the system is under heavy load or whether this is just a byproduct of demand and will update this post when we receive it.
I quite liked the Nexus 4 when I reviewed it earlier this month. I feel that it’s one of the best Android experiences in a phone so far. But it does have a downside in some regions due to its lack of LTE, which doesn’t seem to have much effect on the demand so far.
Of course, we can’t really judge how big the demand is until we know how many Google actually produced. This could be a matter of low production rates.
Update: A notice has now been added to the Google Play store.
“Google Play is currently experiencing very high traffic. Nexus 4 is not sold out and will still be available for purchase. Please try again shortly. Thank you for your patience”