The Google phone is real
The often mentioned and then subsequently dismissed rumours throughout 2009 of a Google phone have turned out to be true, and the competitive landscape in the mobile phone market has just fundamentally changed overnight.
The first Google phone looks like an iPhone with a slightly larger, high-quality touch screen, a scroll wheel ... and Android
. It is called the Nexus One, which makes me believe that 1) it will be marketed as a networking, integrated, life-streaming appliance, and 2) it is the first of a series of Nexus phones.
The phone is being made by HTC
, who also make the X10 for Sony Ericsson amongst others. Obviously, this is very good news for them. As I mentioned in "Android" my first prediction for 2010
, “Aided by the increased demand for Android handsets, HTC will solidify its position as a white-label supplier and will increasingly market itself as a stand-alone brand.”
Google will sell the Nexus One directly, online and unlocked. Pete Cashmore writes
, "Upon receiving the phone, users will choose their carrier from a menu: it’s a bold move that will break the hegemony of the carriers, but might also mean we pay more (unless Google devises a way to partially subsidize the phone itself)."
But they're also partnering with T-Mobile to sell it. Apparently
, Verizon declined. Mashable continues, "That partnership also explains why the Google Phone will use GSM rather than CDMA technology, limiting it to AT&T or T-Mobile: Google only made the decision after Verizon passed on the opportunity to market the device, according to MediaMemo. A January 2010 launch date has been rumored."
HTC must be feeling good, but I wonder what the other Android phone manufacturers/distributers think about this move by Google. Part of me thinks that by releasing Android before releasing their own branded phone(s), they've let firms like Motorola, Samsung, and Sony Ericsson do a lot of research and marketing for them. The other part of me thinks that a rising tide lifts all boats.
Stay tuned. This one is far from over.
Here's some more reading:Nexus One, The Google Phone, Captured In The Wild
(Techcrunch)Specs: HTC Nexus One blessed by the FCC
(Engadget)Google Phone May Be in Works
(NYTimes)Nexus One: T-Mobile Partners on Google Phone
(Mashable)Nexus Is “Like An iPhone On Beautifying Steroids”
(Techcrunch)Why So Many Are So Wrong on the 'Google Phone'
(PC Mag)Nexus One photos, Android 2.1 on-board