Article source for : Google gPhone rumor mill gets slightly more interesting
A Google phone has been rumored all year.
Aug 24, 2007 TechCrunch "summary":http://www.techcrunch.com/2007/08/24/could-the-gphone-be-nigh/ :
The Register reported "in March":http://www.theregister.co.uk/2007/03/16/google_phone_confirmed/ that a European Google executive confirmed the existence of the GPhone and other reports go back to 2006; Om Malik reporting "in December":http://gigaom.com/2006/12/17/google-phone/ that a Google phone was being developed for release in 2008. Engadget posted alleged pictures of the GPhone "in January 07":http://www.engadget.com/2007/01/18/the-google-switch-an-iphone-killer/ ( "see pic":http://www.blogsmithmedia.com/www.engadget.com/media/2007/01/361425462_912138ee17_o-copy.jpg ) with notes claiming that the device was a button-less touchscreen phone that came with GPS built-in for pinpoint navigation around Google Maps.
ZDNet "wrote":http://blogs.zdnet.com/Google/?p=503 that the phone was said to be 3G with built in Wifi and was designed by Samsung. The Register again reported "in early August":http://www.theregister.co.uk/2007/08/02/google_phone/ that the GPhone would include "3G":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/3g, Wifi and GPS, and that UK mobile operator Orange was in talks with Google to carry the device.
*Google has continued to deny rumors of the phones existence*, but has taken a more public interest lately in the mobile phone sector, confirming that it was likely to bid for a slice of the soon to be released "700mhz spectrum":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/700_Mhz_wireless_spectrum_auction in the United States.
br. Excerpts from an Aug 27, 2007 rizzn.com "posting":http://www.rizzn.com/2007/08/gphone-its-confirmed.asp :
I talked to one of my inside sources at Google today. He spoke on conditions of anonymity, but the guy is someone I trust implicitly. He said that he was baffled at Google's apparent internal confusion on the GPhone issue - that they've actually demo'ed the thing in public before.
He said that the "Google (applications) Suite":http://www.google.com/a/ is going to play a huge role in the usability of the GPhone, and the thought process behind it's functionality is less about beating the iPhone and more about beating the "$100 Laptop":http://toledotalk.com/cgi-bin/tt.pl/article/1386/One_Laptop_Per_Child, which provides a huge clue behind what will be the pricing structure on this.
When he was telling me about all the nuances of what he's seen the thing do, I couldn't help but audibly remark about the FCC bid for the 700mhz spectrum making a whole lot more sense. He didn't come out and say it, but I got the impression that they were gunning for the spectrum with a vengeance.
Essentially, this is a post to say that this is a solid confirmation on the GPhone - regarding the two week timetable on it's release, he said he could not confirm that part of the story. I suggested a theory that perhaps they'll show a version of the phone in two weeks (or a press conference about it), but it might not be available for American release until later, and he seemed to think that was a reasonable theory.
Other tidbits that I'm trying to recall based on questions I've recieved from readers:
* It's a modified Linux kernel
* There is integrated GPS and "GoogleMaps":http://www.google.com/gmm/index.html
br. Mmm, less about beating Apple's iPhone and more about beating the $100 Laptop? That doesn't make sense. The $100 Laptop or One Laptop Per Child or "XO":http://www.laptop.org/ is an educational tool for kids that is being developed by a non-profit organization. Wikipedia's One Laptop Per Child "entry":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/One_Laptop_per_Child:
The laptop is developed by the One Laptop per Child (OLPC) social welfare organization. OLPC is a U.S. based, non-profit organization, 501(c)(4) created by faculty members of the MIT Media Lab to design, manufacture, and distribute the laptop and its software.
br. Now, the Google source supposedly said "the $100 laptop" and not specifically the OLPC program. Intel and/or Microsoft are also "touting":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Classmate_PC $100 to $200 laptops. So if this gPhone thing is true, Google may be targeting the "space" of inexpensive laptops and not specifically the OLPC.
The OLPC and Intel's version are currently targeted at kids in developing countries. But if they decide to make these devices available to gadget freak nerds everywhere, then I could see Google wanting to go up against these cheapo laptops, which will probably not sell for $100 to the U.S. consumer market.
"From":http://toledotalk.com/cgi-bin/tt.pl/article/1386/One_Laptop_Per_Child a July 2007 Reuters story about the One Laptop Per Child:
A non-profit group that designs low-cost computers for poor children hopes to start selling multimedia laptops to consumers by Christmas, a foundation executive said on Monday. The One Laptop Per Child Foundation's rugged XO laptop could initially sell for just $350, or twice its production cost, although the group is also considering a $525 price tag.
br. Aug 27, 2007 Om Malik "posting":http://gigaom.com/2007/08/27/google-phone-an-attempt-to-take-on-100-pc/ :
By tightly integrating the Google Apps, Google Phone could become a viable rival to the much ballyhooed $100 PC being promoted by everyone from Nicholas Negroponte and Microsoft (MSFT), and will also over come the connectivity problem facing most of the $100 PC schemes. [I]t makes sense for Google to be talking to mobile carriers in countries where PC density is marginal.
br. Some comments to both Aug 27 Google phone blog postings:
* no offense, but I call BS. This is probably the 1 millionth posting by someone claiming to have an "inside person" who provides "conclusive evidence" of the gPhone. I hope you prove me wrong, but I call BS until then.
* It's "confirmed" when it's officially confirmed by Google representatives. This is just another rumor. And linkbait.
* Anyone who claims they have the next OLPC killer because they have some sub $100 piece of HW that runs some productivity applications has clearly not personally worked with the XO. I have had the privileged, and like others who have also, the first thing you notice is that it is a collaboration tool presently optimized for education. It does not do the greatest job with PIM/desktop tasks because it was not designed for techno-gadget craving, white-collar workers. Have an educator do a review on the g-phone and then I might listen.
Aug 28, 2007 engadget "posting":http://www.engadget.com/2007/08/28/google-is-working-on-a-mobile-os-and-its-due-out-shortly/ :
We understand that the "Gphone OS" (our name for it, not theirs) began development after Google's very quiet 2005 acquisition of mobile software company Android, started by Danger cofounder and former-prez / CEO Andy Rubin. At Google, Andy's team has developed a Linux-based mobile device OS (no surprise) which they're currently shopping around to handset makers and carriers on the premise of providing a flexible, customizable system -- with really great Google integration, of course.
As for the timeframe on this thing, we keep hearing Google will announce its mobile plans some time post-Labor Day (September 3rd); from what we've heard Google isn't necessarily working on hardware of its own, but is definitely working with OEMs and ODMs to get them to put the Gphone OS on upcoming devices. Think of it more in terms of Windows Mobile or Palm OS (in the early days) -- Google wants to supply the platform, but we don't think they want to sell hardware.
Aug 28, 2007 Techcrunch "posting":http://www.techcrunch.com/2007/08/28/lots-and-lots-of-google-phone-rumors/ :
Yesterday Crunchgear got "confirmation from a senior (and anonymous) HTC exec":http://crunchgear.com/2007/08/27/cg-exclusive-htc-insider-confirms-existence-of-the-google-phone/ that they’ve created some twenty devices for Google to test and are shooting for a Q1 2008 launch.
Google’s effort is different than the iPhone. They look to be focused mostly on the OS and layering Google applications like Maps and Gmail on top of that, while simultaneously talking to device manufacturers about a number of devices. Apple, instead, took a much more holistic approach in creating the iPhone. Google’s product likely won’t appeal to the mainstream audience that the iPhone attracts…but it probably won’t have a $500 price tag, either.
And just to throw another tidbit out there - the HTC exec that was mentioned on CrunchGear yesterday said *Yahoo* is on a parallel track as Google, and has actually been working on custom phones for longer than Google. We may be seeing a Yahoo phone next year, too.
Aug 28, 2007 ars technica "posting":http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20070828-getting-to-the-bottom-of-the-gphone-rumors.html :
Google is allegedly "in talks" with three of India's largest telecoms. According to India-based The Business Standard, the company plans to schedule a multi-continent launch in the next few weeks, including India, Europe, and possibly the US. However, a recent report by CrunchGear states that its own sources at mobile handset provider HTC have tipped the site off to multiple gPhone handsets getting prepped for launch in the first quarter of 2008, and that the handsets will be coming out of Taiwan. There will supposedly be over 20 different handsets to choose from—some with GPS—and they will carry special versions of Google Maps, Google Calendar, Gmail, and VoIP-enabled Google Talk.