We have seen this issue since the nexus one when Google wanted to try and push their vision of android. It was a good phone but not good enough to get people to buy it in the numbers they expected. The nexus one could not get enough people to pay outright for a phone and getting carriers to promote the phone requires jumping through hoops. Despite Apple having the ability to prevent carriers, including Verizon, from tampering with the product, Google has had no such luck. Every phone Google try and sell through the carriers require some form of lock and key that locks the phone and (some) software to set carrier. We managed to get around that with the Nexus 6 but obviously there were still issues as Google had to release a different software image for each carrier as the OTA for the different carriers were different (VZW and ATT had a few apps I believe). Personally I liked that the Nexus 6 was sold through the carriers as it was easier to get a phone through the carriers than Google. The problem was that at the time you could only get a certain variant through the carriers (ie Blue 32 GB) vs it being open to actually having options. And if you tried to buy the phone through either Motorola or Google you were stuck waiting for weeks just to order and months just to get your shipment. So the issue is Google being able to supply the inventory to sell the phones through the carrier as well as have some stocked for warranty swaps. In a saturated market Google seems reserved to fully commit to the numbers needed and that is understood considering they have not made much, if any, profit from nexus phones in the past (Nexus phones will never see huge sales—but here’s why they don’t need to). So with Alphabet making changes wanting to see profitable products, how can Google sell the phones we want, the way we want, for the carriers we want?