Googlephone sales 50 percent better than expected

Paul Boutin · 11/24/08 02:06PM

T-Mobile's G1 phone, which runs Google's Android operating system, just doesn't have the cultural icon status of Apple's iPhone. But HTC, the Taiwanese company that makes the G1, revised its 2008 sales forecast up to one million, from an initial 600,000. (For context, Apple sold a million iPhones in the first 74 days.) Silicon Alley Insider asks the burning question: Who here bought one? Are G1 owners somehow different from iPhone evangelists who need to show their superphone to everyone on the bus?

Death by Twitter for HTC smartphone's U.S. release

Paul Boutin · 10/07/08 01:20PM

The gadget obessives at Gizmodo were both stoked and wary about Taiwanese smartphone maker HTC's widescreen Windows mobile phone, which packs an 800x480-pixel screen compared to the iPhone's 480-by-320 display. There have been rumors that HTC wasn't going to sell the HD in America, following its intro to Europe and Asia. The bad news is now Twitter official: "sad news, US. we looked into it- by the time we could bring Touch HD to the states, it would be old news." So much easier than a press release.

T-Mobile backs away from Googlephone bandwidth cap

Jackson West · 09/25/08 09:40AM

The technoblogomemesphere erupted in derision when T-Mobile's plans for a one-gigabyte monthly cap on bandwidth for the new HTC phone running Google's Android OS emerged. Customers who exceeded the limit would have seen their speeds reduced by a factor of 20. Anyone who wanted to listen to Internet radio or browse YouTube while on the bus with the gadget would have quickly run up against the limit. T-Mobile now promises to lift the cap and use a different, but as yet unknown, "network management practice" to keep the system from getting clogged. "We reserve the right to temporarily reduce data throughput for a small fraction of our customers who have excessive or disproportionate usage," the company maintains. Now the only thing standing in the way of you browsing to your heart's content is T-Mobile crappy coverage and no 3G network service outside of a few major markets. (Photo by Luis Alberto Arjona Chin)

Source: Here are the first Googlephone's specs

Nicholas Carlson · 08/26/08 09:20AM

The AndroidGuys blog says a "trusted source" handed them this blueprint of HTC's G1, which will be the first Googlephone to hit the market this fall. Like the iPhone, it's got a touchscreen. Unlike the iPhone it also has a mini-trackball mouse and a five-row QWERTY keyboard, similar to the kind Helio built into its Sidekick devices. If it can copy and paste, the competition is over. The AndroidGuys — which is all over this beat — also landed a shooting script for the Googlephone's first commercial, proving that what might be most similar about the HTC/Google device and Apple's iPhone are the bizarre passions of their respective fanboys.

Google's Android now a fake OS for more gadgets

Nicholas Carlson · 08/18/08 10:20AM

Google's mobile OS Android might have a future in "set-top boxes for televisions, mp3 players and other communication and media devices and services," reports VentureBeat. Silicon Alley Insider confirms the story — or at least the fact that Google's working on Android-loaded cable boxes — and wonders if maybe Google will move them as a part of its partnership with Clearwire. None of this will happen anytime soon, of course.The first Android-loaded phone — the HTC dream, to run on the T-Mobile network — isn't due out until October. It's not certain that when that device does come out that Android will be much to look at. Ever since Google released its last software developement kit only to the first 50 winners of its Android Developer Challenge, the jealous rest of the third-party developers building apps for the OS continue to trash the system's prospects in the press.

Will electric sheep have Android Dreams?

Jackson West · 08/12/08 08:00PM

The HTC Dream, the first fruit of Google's foray into mobile phones, will be available for preorder from T-Mobile during a one-week window starting September 17. The artificial time scarcity seems designed to create iPhone-like hype. And perhaps the Dream will succeed at that. At $150 along with a two-year contract and a new, probably more expensive, unlimited data plan, this is the first wireless device I've seen that looks like real iPhone competition. Sure, it has Google's Android operating system, a touch screen and 3G speeds, but it also has a keyboard. And it's from HTC, the Taiwanese handset manufacturer that makes really nice phones — mostly for Microsoft's Windows Mobile operating system until now. But just like the iPhone, the don't-call-it-a-Googlephone won't really bust up the carrier-handset-operating-system industrial complex that has long bedeviled the mobile market.I recently purchased the HTC Dash, right before the California Supreme Court struck down as illegal early contract termination fees — otherwise, I might have gone and signed up for an iPhone myself. But I love the Dash since it, too, has real buttons and is slim enough not to disrupt the hang of a jacket. Even at over a year old (which is about 35 in Hollywood actress years), it's still selling well despite two major drawbacks: Windows Mobile and T-Mobile. Similarly, the iPhone is locked to Apple and AT&T. Want an application? You'll have to buy it from the App Store via iTunes. Want a different carrier? Tough noogies. Apple didn't so much break the lock between handset manufacturers and carriers as much as they inserted themselves as a third gatekeeper. While HTC has close ties to Microsoft — its U.S. offices are based in Seattle, and veteran Windows Mobile developers work at the company — the phone maker won't be leaving Microsoft country. It's just applying for dual citizenship in Mountain View. Dream buyers will be locked to buying T-Mobile voice and data plans, regardless. While customers wait, the current release is likely off in Germany somewhere being larded up with crappy default applications from Deutsche Telekom, T-Mobile's parent, which clings to a desperate Teutonic hope you might be dumb enough to continue using its T-Zones wireless services, baked into every T-Mobile phone. Google's and Apple's entry into wireless just means that lock-in is getting extended from our phones to the desktop. Getting Windows Mobile to sync with my iTunes on my MacBook and Google Calendar and email was a project that took an entire evening. It still doesn't work over Bluetooth or Wi-Fi. My father, who took one look at my phone after losing his own and bought one, had no difficulty synching his Outlook contacts and Hotmail account with his Windows PC. Any bets on how easy it will be to sync a phone running Android with Yahoo Mail or iTunes? So if you dream of buying a handset based on its hardware features, then picking an operating system to run on it, and then choosing a wireless carrier which works well in your neighborhood, keep dreaming. Google would rather join the wireless club, and lock you into its own set of services. The Googlephone promised to set us free, and the Dream looks beautiful — but it's just another cell phone.

Leaked video of the first Android phone

Nicholas Carlson · 08/11/08 09:20AM

The first mobile device to hit the market running Google's mobile operating system, Android, will be the HTC Dream and claims its landed a leaked video of the device in action. We've embedded it below. The Android Guys blog says the device in the video reminds them of the device Google used to demonstrate Android to the BBC back in February. We've embedded that video below as well. Viewing both clips, its obvious both the device and its operating system are pretty slick, but will the companies be able to create an ad campaign that makes us feel like we are both among, apart from, and above the crowd: a new soul in this strange world, come to learn a bit about how to give and take? If yes, then maybe we're interested.The leaked video of HTC's "The Dream":

HTC to ship 50,000 pointless Googlephones

Nicholas Carlson · 10/17/07 12:32PM

A UBS analyst is spreading rumors that Taiwanese manufacturer HTC will ship 50,000 cell phones running Google's mobile operating system by the end of the year. That's not so hard to believe. Just don't call the devices Googlephones. We've been saying for months there is no such thing as a Googlephone, or an OS, really — instead, it's just cell-phone-optimized services from Google. The low order number just confirms that Google knows it can't be a player in the hardware business. Expect the user interface on the phones to look a lot like Google Docs for Mobile, a wireless version of Google's Web-apps suite launched today. And here's a question: If we can run Google Docs on any phone, why would we — or Google — need a Googlephone? Right. That's what we've been telling you all along.