[qi:83] Given the regularity with which the Google Phone related rumors show up in the media, it is clear that people want Google to make a gPhone. Maybe it is frustration with the current devices or just a fascination with Google, gPhone has gotten as much, if not more attention than the iPhone. Today, a highly speculative report points out that Google is talking to some large Indian wireless operators such as Airtel, Vodafone Essar, and BSNL. I wouldn’t hold my breath, for it will be a while before (and if) gPhone does actually show up.
14 thoughts on “Another Day, Another GPhone Rumor”
“gPhone has gotten as much, if not more attention than the iPhone.” Um, no. Ask any “man on the street” if he’s heard of the iPhone. Then try the “gPhone”. I’ll wager that the results hold even in the SV echo chamber.
I’d love to see a wide range of network services tightly integrated with the phone. Blackberry has come close, but there’s still a long way to go.
The attempts at network integration I’ve seen (such as Sprint’s integration with its PictureMail site) have been pretty poor, especially on the Web side.
For example, integration of the phonebook with IM based presence.
Google and Apple are in the best positions to make this a reality.
Some more thoughts here:
It will be a great alternative for those who can’t afford iPhone. If one is able to access all the Google Page gadgets then it will be in par with iPhone. I think they will become very successful in India.
That report on Rediff.com was speculative indeed! And with contradictory / erroneous comments too. A couple of gems:
At the top they write that Google “is believed to be a fortnight away from the worldwide launch of its much-awaited Google Phone (Gphone)”! Towards the end, they talk of reports which “suggest that Google has developed a prototype that will hit the markets in a year’s time.” Big contradictions within the same report!
They also write: “Globally, Google is likely to participate in the upcoming auction for 700 MHz spectrum for which it is prepared to spend up to $4.6 billion.” Ugh! Globally?
This is why I am not a great fan of tech reporting in India.
OpenMoko’s “Neo” has a plain Jane GSM radio, but there is nothing stopping them from adding a WiFi chip that runs on 700Mhz!
I severely doubt you will see an actual hardware device for sale from Google directly – BUT – that doesn’t mean you won’t see a big underwriting option as you go through the OpenMoko check out cart:
“…enter your Gmail user name and password to receive a 90% discount on your purchase of the Neo with 700 Mhz support…”
Here’s hoping. 🙂
Todd, that there is no 700 MHz WiFi would be the thing stopping them. I do, however, agree that some sort of mobile Linux device like the Neo would be the platform behind the gPhone.
You Can See Google gPhone Concepts
gPhone might become a reality faster than we think in the US if Google wins the next battle of FCC spectrum auctions. Google is also in talks with Intel on WiMax in India to provide free voice&data on phone (ad subsidized of course!). There was a company IceNet in India that did a tie-up for free WiMax services, but its Investor/Board Member Vishnu Varshney of GVFL got involved in some financial scams and company got liquidated!