A Google phone, that up until now has only lived inside a mythical rumor, is confirmed to go on sale early in 2010. Google plans to sell the Nexus One running Android 2.1 direct to consumers online, bypassing exclusive cellular carriers altogether. Potential buyers of the unlocked GSM device will be required to shop for cellular service after the fact according to the Wall Street Journal.
"Unlike the more than half-dozen Android phones made by phone manufacturers today, Google designed virtually the entire software experience behind the phone, from the applications that run on it to the look and feel of each screen." Source - WSJ
Twitter was ablaze on Saturday with news that the new HTC manufactured handset running the Android operating system was already in the hands of Google employees worldwide. One tweet, that grabbed ginormous attention early on came from GreatWhitesnark who said;
"A friend from Google showed me the new Android 2.1 phone from HTC coming out in Jan. A sexy beast. Like an iPhone on beautifying steroids."
post on the company's Mobile Blog early Saturday morning; "we shared this device with Google employees across the globe. This means they get to test out a new technology and help improve it.", referred to the device in a
Although the leaked images don't make the handset look anything near an "iPhone on beautifying steroids", Nexus One will have a 3.5-inch super high-resolution OLED touchscreen, that's expected to be thinner than the iPhone, also omitting a physical keyboard. The phone will run on a Snapdragon processor and will carry two mics, one up front and one in back with enhanced voice-to-text super powers. The second mic on the back is designed to help the Nexus One eliminate background noise.
"The phone is a significant escalation of Google's assault on the mobile industry, challenging both wireless carriers that sell devices as well as companies that design them." WSJ writes.
The Wall Street Journal is a tad premature in calling the news "Google's assault on the mobile industry", the truth is that the company is crash landing its hardware into the mobile space extremely late in the game. The ability to learn from Apple's minor mistakes launching iPhone will offer little reward since the masterminds in Cupertino have gained a significant lead with iPhone's amazing OS and the epic App Store Juggernaut that's still in its infancy.
It is Apple who's truly made a devastating assault on the mobile industry, in fact the big boys never even saw the iPhone coming. Google can only hope to play a more effective game of follow the leader while sucking on Apple's exhaust, just like every one else has been forced to do. It's the difference between being an innovator or one of the zombie hordes of imitators. Apple is reaping the unique benefits of being the innovator.
There's no doubt in my small, caffeine soaked mind that the Googler's are in this to win it. I wish them the best of luck, because they'll need tons of it. As for the zombie hordes gathering outside on Apple's doorstep, aim for their heads people![Image above by Cory O'Brien]