Google Blames Nexus 4 Shortage on LG

Paul Lilly

LG's Nexus 4 shipments have been "scarce and erratic," Google says.

Google's Nexus 4 debut is an prime example of how not to launch a product. There's nothing wrong with the hardware, mind you, it's the lack of availability that's driving potential buyers batty. How could Google have so ineptly predicted the strong demand than an unlocked and affordable smartphone running the latest version of Android would elicit? That's a great question, and Google is content to partially pass the buck.

The root cause of the shortage falls on LG's shoulders. Dan Cobley, Google's managing director for the company's U.K. and Ireland divisions, fielded a bunch of questions and complaints on Google+ with an explanation of what's going on, followed by an apology.

"I know that what you are going through is unacceptable and we are all working through the nights and weekends to resolve this issue. Supplies from the manufacturer are scarce and erratic, and our communication has been flawed," Cobley said . "I can offer an unreserved apology for our service and communication failures in this process."

What Cobley and Google can't do is fix LG's "scarce and erratic" manufacturing. That's mostly out of Google's hands, which puts the company in an awkward situation.

"I am optimistic that we will be able to share some positive news shortly, but I do not want to cause any more disappointment by making a commitment until we are 100 percent sure we can deliver on it," Cobley added.

Nexus 4 stock has been selling out quickly every time it returns . Demand has been so high that Ebay imposed sale restrictions for the device on its auction site.

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