Saturday, November 3, 2007

Google Phone announcement on Monday

It's been talked about for a few months on all the techy sites, but there seems to be a major announcement coming this Monday from Google on their long-awaited answer to the iPhone craze.

From the Wall Street Journal blog:

We won’t have to wait much longer to hear from Google about its big plans in wireless. The company looks set to make a splash in the mobile market on Monday, announcing an alliance with various handset makers and cellphone operators around the world that are willing to push its “open” platform for cellphone applications, sources say. It’s always possible the announcement’s timing could change, but Monday looks like the day at this point.

The U.S. carriers likely to be part of the announcement are T-Mobile and Sprint, according to our sources, but there could be others by the time Google says its piece. While Sprint appears to be agreeing to work with Google to put the Web giant’s new Linux-based open operating system into phones, T-Mobile will probably go even further: the company has worked with Google for months on plans to build Google-powered phones with a variety of Google software and applications. As far as handset partners for Google, Taiwan’s HTC is a likely bet, our sources say. Samsung, LG, and SonyEricsson are also possible, but we’ll wait and see the full roster. Equally interesting will be who isn’t on the list.

Don’t expect to see any devices soon – the middle of next year is the earliest Google-powered phones could come to market.

What will the impact be? Well, Google is trying to remake cellphones in the model of the Web, making them as open as possible to new applications in areas like social networking and map-based services. It’s too early to tell whether this will be a revolution in cellphones – or just an evolution that improves on the relatively open platforms already out there, like rival Microsoft’s Windows mobile. If the partnerships result in Google-branded devices hitting the market, we’ll get a chance to see how much pull the Google name really has in the wireless market. We’ve already seen the pull Apple has.

Our guess: It’s one more piece of tech that people will want to bring into the workplace and that corporate-tech departments won’t know how to respond to.

According to CNET, the announcement will be Google's new phone software operating system, code-named, "Android":

Google is ready to unveil a suite of software for mobile phones based on open-source technology, backed by some of the largest wireless industry companies in the world.

The company is expected to hold a press conference on Monday to unveil the project, which is expected to incorporate software from the Linux world into a mobile platform code-named Android that's designed to run on phones, according to sources familiar with Google's plans. A software development kit for what's being called "a complete mobile-phone software stack" is believed to be in the works and will be released relatively soon thereafter, the sources said. It's not exactly clear what kind of software will come as part of that stack, but it's said to include everything you need to run a phone.

Japanese wireless carriers KDDI and NTT DoCoMo are said to be heavily involved in what will be called the Open Handset Alliance, according to other sources. The rest of the more than 30 other companies involved reads like a who's-who list of the mobile-computing industry, including Qualcomm, Broadcom, HTC, Intel, Samsung, Motorola, Sprint, and Texas Instruments.

Don't expect to see a Google phone, or Gphone, on store shelves anytime soon. And in such a large project with so many different players, plans and some details could still change over the weekend. It's unclear when the final version will be released. Google has repeatedly declined to talk about the Gphone or confirm the Monday event.

Can Google really be a mobile-software developer, search engine, application house, and wireless carrier? And will people actually want to use that? We might soon find out.

(never a bad time to invest in Google stock)

No comments:

Post a Comment