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Google Businesses Cellphones Handhelds The Internet Hardware

Running Google Android On iPhone Clones 191

Posted by timothy
from the market-penetration dept.
wooby writes "With the release of Android's source code, we may see iPhone and Nokia clone phones of Chinese origin capable of running Google Android. These phones, often available for less than $200 without a contract, are available on DealExtreme and elsewhere. But the software running on them is universally awful. Is the clone phone market a vast, nascent install-base for Android, and part of Google's end game? According to Google's Dave Bort, 'One of our goals would be, just to get Android all over the place' [YouTube link]."
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Running Google Android On iPhone Clones

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  • welcome (Score:5, Funny)

    by internerdj (1319281) on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @01:38PM (#25558027)
    I for one welcome our new cheap, Google-powered, android overlords.
    • Re:welcome (Score:5, Insightful)

      by James_Duncan8181 (588316) on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @01:47PM (#25558167) Homepage
      I for one welcome the return of the 80s standardisation of the PC market via Windows compatibility demands but in a different market. All of China's clone manufacturers can dump 90% of their software development costs and have something that isn't insanely buggy for free that they occasionally do a bit of custom GUI stuff for. Of course that will happen.
      • Re:welcome (Score:5, Insightful)

        by PitaBred (632671) <slashdotNO@SPAMpitabred.dyndns.org> on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @02:12PM (#25558575) Homepage

        It's like the 80's except better since the software is open-source and you aren't locked into the whims of the supplier!

        Everybody wins! Yay!!!

        • Re:welcome (Score:4, Funny)

          by Dogtanian (588974) on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @03:19PM (#25559605) Homepage

          It's like the 80's except better since the software is open-source and you aren't locked into the whims of the supplier!

          And also that Tiffany isn't at #1.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by sootman (158191)

          I don't know if this will work out as well as some people are predicting. People don't want phones with Android because Android itself is so great. People are excited about Android because it promises to be an open PLATFORM on top of which people can build cool APPS. It's the APPS that everyone wants--like all the cool things we're seeing on the iPhone, but without all the dumb restrictions of Apple and the App Store and the limitations of the iPhone hardware (removable storage, etc.)

          But with all these clon

          • by centuren (106470)

            With the specific complaints about the G1 missing things like Exchange compatibility and easy computer-syncing, one would think that smallish development shops would be racing to get these written.

            If they're absence makes headlines, they're appearance will also, so it's like having the platforms "killer apps" already spec'd out.

    • by Yetihehe (971185)
      Instead of search & destroy those overlords will have more plausible mission: 1. search 2. ??? 3. profit.
  • Sure. Why not? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by morgan_greywolf (835522) on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @01:39PM (#25558041) Homepage Journal

    It worked for MS-DOS. Just ask Microsoft. ;)

    • ~1982

      With Microsoft's freedom to licence MS-DOS, we may soon see IBM-PC clones of Texas origin [wikipedia.org] capable of running MS-DOS...

      Yeah, that aside, this could definitely be relevant. In general, the whole genre of surprisingly cheap offbrand stuff from China offers decent hardware quality(in many cases the same as the expensive branded stuff, since it is the same); but abysmal software and support, buggy firmware, anonymous driver disks that support 50-odd products(not including the one you bought), untransla
      • The biggest thing keeping me from buying an iPhone/iTouch is that dimwitted virtual keyboard that covers half the screen. Do you cover half your screen with an indicator bar or other utility on your desktop? No. You set things up so that you can see more than two lines of type at a time in your app. So why should I want such a thing on my mobile?

        My broader point is that this leverages perhaps the most offensive thing about the iPhone, the Apple-controlled app store, which has shown that they will refuse to
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by lysergic.acid (845423)

        why wouldn't the Chinese knockoff manufacturers just sell their phones with Android installed on them in the first place? they have no real attachment to a shittier OS (unlike carrier-rebranded phones), and they'd save on both development costs and also move more product.

        so it'll likely only be people using AT&T/Cingular-branded phones, or perhaps even the iPhone, who actually have to install Android on their own.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Google would like to get your personal information all over the place.

  • by putch (469506) on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @01:43PM (#25558113) Homepage

    because i really hate the iphone os.

    • uhh (Score:5, Insightful)

      by LockeOnLogic (723968) on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @01:58PM (#25558355)
      ...then why the hell did you buy one? iPhone isn't made for people who want to tinker, its made for my mom and dad. This is like buying a minivan and then bemoaning that you can't start supercharge it to 400hp.
      • Re: (Score:2, Offtopic)

        by Knara (9377)
        My lack of mod points makes me unable to mod you up, but your comment is insightful.
      • Re:uhh (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Synn (6288) on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @02:15PM (#25558617)

        Well, I bought one because it was(arguably still is) the best smart phone on the market.

        But that doesn't mean I like Apple and the iPhone OS. It's stupid silly how they have it locked down and I'm tired of the iTunes tie in.

        I'll be trading my iPhone out for a G1 soon probably, but I don't at all regret having bought the iPhone back in January. It was the best device around at the time and it's served me well over the last year.

        Actually I don't really like the G1 all that much either. I think the hardware isn't as nice as the iPhone hardware. I'm really hoping for an iPhone ripoff with the Android software on it.

        But like the iPhone was over the last year, the G1 is probably the best device for me at the current time. So I'll buy one and when something better comes out, I'll move to that.

        • Re:uhh (Score:5, Interesting)

          by pcolaman (1208838) on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @02:43PM (#25559061)

          Considering Motorola has already stated they are going to make a series of devices with Android, and I'm certain that other equipment makers will probably jump on board at least with a handful of devices, I don't think you will have to wait too long for a more elegant android device.

          That being said, I think the criticisms on the hardware of the G1 are necessarily fair. I mean, yeah, it doesn't shine, but I like function over form personally and the hardware buttons and the qwerty keyboard suit me more than just having the touch screen.

          I respect that that's not good enough for some, but I don't think the G1 was developed as an iPhone killer like some believe and like the gadget media keeps trying to indicate. I think it's aimed more at the audience of people who want a smartphone but want a more open platform than what they are being served by most providers. For instance, I'm a programmer myself and the idea that I can sit down and easily develop applications for my own use for the G1 really drew me towards the Android platform in general. Yeah, you can do that on the iPhone, but not nearly as easily or conveniently as you can on the G1. Not to mention that the SDK was available even before the first device was out and google has already laid out a roadmap for improvements to the platform and SDK. A far cry from what you get from Apple. It's as if Steve Jobs begrudgingly allowed the SDK to be more widely available but really didn't want that to happen.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by geekoid (135745)

          "But that doesn't mean I like Apple and the iPhone OS. "

          agai, why did you buy it? what driving factor was involved in needing to get a smart phone that isn't what you wanted?

          I mean you paifd a lot of money and get locked into a horrible rate plane ..why?

          I'm guessing it's to be 'cool' like the other kids. Of course, that just leads to you whining about it to sh[w how 'cool' you are.

          I suppose it could ahve been a gift.

      • by Blimey85 (609949)
        You apparently know nothing about engines. You don't need to supercharge it to get to 400hp. Just add a nice big nitrous kit. That will give you all the power you need with the added bonus of making really cool explosion sounds as you scatter parts for a half mile.

        In all seriousness though, you can get a minivan to 400hp. Some people need the space or like the way it looks or whatever, but want more power. With the iPhone, maybe you like the looks or how it feels in your hand or that it has the touch scre
        • Re:uhh (Score:5, Insightful)

          by pcolaman (1208838) on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @02:45PM (#25559095)
          Nothing in Apple's history should've given anyone any indication that any decent amount of tinkering would be allowed by Apple.
          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by bogjobber (880402)
            Nothing in Apple's *recent* history. They used to be very friendly to hobbyists, even going so far as shipping the Apple II with full schematics. It's sad they've gone so far in the other direction.
          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by tepples (727027)

            Nothing in Apple's history should've given anyone any indication that any decent amount of tinkering would be allowed by Apple.

            Even Apple's publication of the complete schematics and BIOS source code of some of its 8-bit home computers?

            • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

              by pcolaman (1208838)
              Ok, let me rephrase. Nothing in Apple's history that applies to modern computers. Let's try to focus on technology that is more powerful than a Nintendo NES. You and I both know that the current Apple company is a far cry from that Apple.
        • I'm rebuilding the engine in my station wagon with the intention of making just over 400 HP (without a supercharger, turbo, nitrous, etc). For whatever that's worth. :)

        • that's pretty much how i feel about the PSP. i mean, there really aren't too many (good) products designed specifically for tinkerers because it's pretty much a niche market.

          besides, if you're the tinkering type you're going to hack/modify everyday products you use regardless of whether that's what it was designed for. some of the best hacks & mods out there are made for closed systems like the Xbox, PSP, Wii, etc. so it's pretty dumb to say, "X isn't made for tinkerers. so you shouldn't have bought it.

      • Not quite 400HP, and not supercharged, but just for fun, you might get a kick out of this based on your comment:

        http://www.turbominivan.com/members/terry/ [turbominivan.com]

        302HP at the wheels, which, assuming a 15% driveline loss (could be more or less, depending on a variety of factors) works out to somewhere in the range of 350HP at the flywheel. The page I found this link on says he's running 11's now, which would indicate that he's probably passed the 400HP mark given the weight and shape of the vehicle, but that's
      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by Anonymous Coward

        iPhone isn't made for people who want to tinker

        I love how the Apple zealot argument changes course 180 degrees depending on the situation. Since the v1 phone came out, we have been inundated with stories about developing applications for the phone. Now that we know the phone is extremely limited and Apple has the last say over whether you are even allowed to distribute your applications, the Apple zealots are claiming that it is not a developers phone.

        MAKE UP YOUR MINDS!!!

        Either it is a developer's phone

        • I have to disagree. The iPhone is very unlimited. You just have to take one road to get there. I don't have one but I have an iPod Touch. What I like about it is that it can do tons of things.
      • by Andy Dodd (701)

        You should be able to do such a thing - not quite 400HP but still respectably high - http://www.turbovan.net/van.html [turbovan.net]

        Since it's the same engine as Relentless it could have reached 400+ if the owner had wanted to.

      • by putch (469506)

        is there another multi-touch device with 3g data support?

      • by geekoid (135745)

        Hmmm..sounds like a challenge.

    • by Orlando (12257)

      Please expand on this, how on earth can you 'hate' an OS? And what do you object to so much about the iPhone's OS?

      • by putch (469506)

        i could go on and on. but first and foremost: no copy/cut and paste. wtf? it's been about 5 years since i had a cell phone that DIDNT have the ability to copy and paste.

        also the mail application is probably worst email client i've used since AOL 2.5. you can't disable downloading html objects? wtf?

        if it wasnt for the fact that i can read comic books on it i'd certainly have returned it or at least bought a shotgun and shot it.

  • by Lumpy (12016) on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @01:48PM (#25558173) Homepage

    the CECT P168C has a feature I cant fin in any other phone. Dual SIM cars support. I could have my work phone sim and my personal phone sim in one phone and reduce pocket clutter. I wold KILL for this feature but the morosn that make most american phones refuse to deliver this feature.

    Hell the few Nokia's that did support it were Europe/asia only.

    • I wold KILL for this feature but the morosn that make...

      That's an unfortunate place to make a typo....Dual-SIM phones would be nice, though.
    • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @02:23PM (#25558741) Journal
      Trouble is, it isn't that the phone makers are morons, it is that the American phone distributors, who are almost always the telcoms, have no interest in you having that feature. Dual SIM support starts down a dangerous slippery slope: First consumers want to consolidate their work and personal numbers on one phone. Allowable, though they really should be paying a monthly fee for some sort of forwarding service(remember, when you own the network, intelligence at the edges is the enemy). Before you know it, though, they've gotten uppity, and are using cheap prepaid SIMs from other companies in order to save money. Can't have that.
      • by Lumpy (12016)

        Exactly, Even phones like my Nokia e62 or my blackjack support multiple accounts on the same sim so that through that provider I could have 2 phone numbers, they REFUSE to set up such a feature. AT&T/Cingular say it's against their company policies.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by Kizeh (71312)

          Indeed. There's no need for dual SIMs, which is why the feature vanished from European phones -- you just put multiple lines on one SIM and let the phone handle it. It's quite commonplace in Finland among my former colleagues. A lot of people at work in the US want to do this, but none of the carriers we've talked to, as a large university, are interested in offering this functionality.

          • I'm not at all surprised at the consumer level; but I'm a bit surprised to hear that the carriers wouldn't cut some sort of deal, even if it involved charging extra for what the phones can do natively(Hi Verizon! Yes, I do resent the idea of paying $10/month to use GPS.), for such a large customer.
    • by ArhcAngel (247594)

      I would like dual sims as well but for now here is what I do. I forwarded my personal phone to my business phone and get all calls on one phone. Haven't turned my personal phone on in over a year. Of course if you don't have a large bucket -o- minutes or your boss is a jerk about personal calls on the company phone then your screwed.

    • by bazorg (911295)
      that'll be a Samsung D880 for table number 4
  • Shameless plug? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @01:48PM (#25558177)

    1) Submit "story" to Slashdot with affiliate sales link cleverly embedded inside.
    2) Profit!

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by wooby (786765)
      Actually I put in my reseller code as an afterthought: why not? DealExtreme really is the best online clone phone retailer, with pictures and comments on most of the common clone models. And, I happen to have a referral code with them. So what, I'm a starving IT student! 3) Ramen
  • by proxima (165692) on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @01:52PM (#25558253)

    When my contract expires (early next year), I'll be in the market for a new phone and plan. This time around, the prepaid plans I've been seeing might actually be a better deal than what I've been paying.

    The trouble is, prepaid phones seem pretty crappy on average. I have a Motorola Razr which I'd likely keep, but sadly it's CDMA (Verizon) so I can't stick a prepaid SIM into it. At the same time, I wouldn't mind ditching my separate mp3 player and having a phone capable of using the wifi I have available in many places. That all points to "smartphones", which can be really expensive without a 2 year plan.

    Buying an unlocked phone with a decent OS for $200 and buying some cheap flash might be a good solution. Or, if the hardware sucks and the OS is poorly adapted to it, it might be a frustrating experience. Time will tell, but I'm not anxious to become an early adopter here.

    • by slashkitty (21637)
      I use a prepaid account with a $250 iphone from apple. Too bad they don't offer that option anymore. It's great for people that don't talk much.
  • by derek_farn (689539) <derek&knosof,co,uk> on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @01:52PM (#25558257) Homepage
    Where is the news? Android is also available on the commercially available phones running Windows Mobile, eg HTC Kaiser [xda-developers.com].
  • by Ohio Calvinist (895750) on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @01:53PM (#25558263)
    I think Google is unfortunately in a precarious position with Android if it's primary niche becomes crapware-filled knockoff phones or installed on very uninspired and underpowered hardware. They are in the same boat as MS, where a large majority of criticism of the platform from the average consumer is due to OEM modification, pre-loading, and crappy hardware support (via 3rd party drivers).

    Linux thrived in a hobbist environment eventually to the point of corprate adoption, which takes both time, a community, and a willingness to run at a loss for a long time. The real key to success is developers whose goal was a OS that was secure, stable and efficent on legacy hardware, and somewhat "peer reviewed". For Android, the average developer is going to produce $3-$5 applets on their own for consumers who have no sense of style or consistency (UI standard). I cringe; personally when I see applications for my iPhone that have no forethought and look like bastard stepchildren compared to my other apps who follow the UI standards. For a consumer good, it needs to be "excellent" (or "better" than the competition) and not only that, downright "sexy" before it hits the masses or it is going be DOA or lackluster at best.

    I fear the same methodology that made Linux "proper" great, will make Andriod a cheap OS for cheap phones developed on by bad developers for companies trying to squeeze every last cent of profit out of a "consumer good" like a toaster or DVR. That being said, I hope I am wrong.
    • by mikeee (137160)

      I think Google is unfortunately in a precarious position with Android if it's primary niche becomes crapware-filled knockoff phones or installed on very uninspired and underpowered hardware. They are in the same boat as MS, where a large majority of criticism of the platform from the average consumer is due to OEM modification, pre-loading, and crappy hardware support (via 3rd party drivers).

      Hey, it worked for Windows, I don't see why it won't for Google...

      OEM modification is the problem; you need to be abl

      • by pcolaman (1208838)
        As if the cheap knockoff Chinese Android phones will make a real impact with how Android does. That would be like saying that the cheap Chinese knockoff iPhones are affecting how the iPhone does. Seriously, this is a dumb argument.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by 0xdeadbeef (28836)

      I cringe; personally when I see applications...

      SYNTAX ERROR

      I love pointing out the errors of people who say things like this: "for consumers who have no sense of style or consistency".

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Warbothong (905464)

      I think Google is unfortunately in a precarious position with Android if it's primary niche becomes crapware-filled knockoff phones or installed on very uninspired and underpowered hardware. They are in the same boat as MS, where a large majority of criticism of the platform from the average consumer is due to OEM modification, pre-loading, and crappy hardware support (via 3rd party drivers).

      Linux thrived in a hobbist environment eventually to the point of corprate adoption, which takes both time, a community, and a willingness to run at a loss for a long time. The real key to success is developers whose goal was a OS that was secure, stable and efficent on legacy hardware, and somewhat "peer reviewed". For Android, the average developer is going to produce $3-$5 applets on their own for consumers who have no sense of style or consistency (UI standard). I cringe; personally when I see applications for my iPhone that have no forethought and look like bastard stepchildren compared to my other apps who follow the UI standards. For a consumer good, it needs to be "excellent" (or "better" than the competition) and not only that, downright "sexy" before it hits the masses or it is going be DOA or lackluster at best.

      I fear the same methodology that made Linux "proper" great, will make Andriod a cheap OS for cheap phones developed on by bad developers for companies trying to squeeze every last cent of profit out of a "consumer good" like a toaster or DVR. That being said, I hope I am wrong.

      I really really really really really really REALLY hope that entire comment was meant to be sarcastic.

      Firstly, Windows is good because of OEMs. Microsoft have to do very little hardware support, because they know that the hardware makers will do it for them (or risk losing money by having a product which doesn't work on 90%+ of machines). Get a machine with Windows and it will work (for a certain value of work, since we are talking about Windows).

      Linux is generally bad because of lack of OEMs installing it.

      • My point was related to applications that would have otherwise been great; but do not fit into the overall design scheme of the platform. The product looks unpolished and is less enjoyable to use. The fact is that most folks care a lot more about how a tool looks than how it internally looks. When i am developing something, we have an entire department that checks that my UI blends with the rest of the product, and the rest of our products.

        Regarding putting my criteria on other phones; I'm simply stating
  • by jollyreaper (513215) on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @01:56PM (#25558299)

    But the software running on them is universally awful. Is the clone phone market a vast, nascent install-base for Android, and part of Google's end game?

    What, a parallel to the PC/PC-compatible watershed? God, I hope so. The next step is getting them to change the billing rates for wireless, they're killing us.

  • by Dr. Spork (142693) on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @01:56PM (#25558315)

    Basically, you're saying that with Android, a manufacturer wouldn't really even need the support of a big brand of cellphones - since the big brands use China for fabrication, but then pocket some of the money.

    So Chinese fabs could just hire a couple of engineers to quickly make clones of devices designed by experts, and there would be a ready-made, free software for those devices. I like it! But it must be a scary thought for companies like Nokia, Motorola, RIM and Apple. Maybe it will drive some hesitation about the use of Android, because everyone will know that knockoffs will work pretty much identically to an Android phone.

    Potentially, the big winners here could be the carriers, who could just brand the cheaper hardware.

    • by pcolaman (1208838)
      I don't think it's as big an issue as most here seem to fear. In the end, just having Android will not make a phone outsell another Android phone. Having the right hardware setup and having a good software inclusion will make the difference. Also, sometimes you really do get what you pay for. The reason the Chinese iPhone clones aren't hurting the sales of the iPhone is because they suck. The same will go for the Chinese made Android phones, because the implementation of the phone will still be garbage
  • by Dzimas (547818) on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @01:58PM (#25558341)
    For what it's worth, the DealExtreme link in the summary includes an embedded affiliate code. I appreciate informative links as much as the next guy, but this looks like an attempt to cash in on a /. post.
    • by ryanvm (247662) on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @02:11PM (#25558551)

      So what? The guy is pointing you towards something you're interested in. What does it matter if he makes a little scratch from it?

      Now if it were a Slashdot editor's affiliate link, that would be a different story.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Blakey Rat (99501)

      Well, considering none of the knock-off phones listed actually HAVE Android installed, hopefully he won't see many purchases. Still, shame for using an affiliate link and not even pointing to the products you're talking about.

    • by pwnies (1034518) * <j@jjcm.org> on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @04:31PM (#25560503) Homepage Journal
      So what? You still get the same information from the story with or without the affiliate code. The article provided me with an insightful look at Chinese knock offs, and having a small referral link doesn't change that.
      This is an 'everybody wins' situation. You get a story, slashdot gets content, DealExtreme gets traffic, and the author of the story gets a small kickback for bringing that traffic. Is that such a bad thing?
    • Don't hate the player, hate the game.
    • For what it's worth, the DealExtreme link in the summary includes an embedded affiliate code. I appreciate informative links as much as the next guy, but this looks like an attempt to cash in on a /. post.

      B.F.D.

      You're a geek. That means 'news' to you is 'new shiny products on the market'. As a result, most stories you find interesting will be commercials in some form. Should you decide to go purchase the referred product, all you're doing is preventing the guy who brought it to your attention from getting his reward. Real f'ing cool.

  • by religious freak (1005821) on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @01:58PM (#25558351)
    I submit that this is 80's PC history repeating itself (ok, maybe it's just rhyming). Again, with Apple pushing a proprietary, tightly controlled hardware/software package and another pushing only the software side (this time it's Google, not MS).

    If history is any indication, the open standard will win... these "clones" are an indication of that. Their initial quality will be awful, but if there's a market, quality will improve.

    Of course, there are differences and nothing is guaranteed, but the similarities are too striking to ignore.
    • One difference is that Apple has spent a long time now learning how to keep pace with cheap, popular, and free/open alternatives.

      I don't think Apple would even be surprised if you told them that the smart-phone competition will heat up with Android. They just think their own design and engineering is good enough to keep them ahead of the curve, just as they manage to STILL make a lot of money selling Macs despite the lower pricetags of Dell, Microsoft, Linux, etc.

  • keyboard? (Score:4, Informative)

    by Nate Fox (1271) on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @01:59PM (#25558385)
    the problem with an iphone clone is there's no keyboard. and theres no software keyboard in android yet. once thats added, I'm sure this will happen
    • by BobMcD (601576)

      Maybe someday you can just use something like this:

      apt-get install software-keyboard

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @02:13PM (#25558587)

    Most of these phones have a 30 - 60Mhz ARM core with 4-8megs of RAM. No Nucleus based phone is going to run Android anytime soon. The ones that run Windows Mobile might, but they're far from what I'd call cheap.

    • by pcolaman (1208838)
      Most of the phones will just have a look and feel that sort of kind of but only in a stupid crappy sort of way resembles the Android interface. Unless they use the same quality hardware as what the G1 runs under the hood.
  • ...and on November 29th, 2008, Android became self-aware...
  • I would like to see it on Netbooks, its probably more appropriate than a full desktop OS for such a specialised bit of hardware....
    • by daver00 (1336845)

      Seriously dude regular smart phones are bricks enough when held up to the ear, can you imagine trying to hold a 9" laptop up to your ear and talk?

  • Regardless.... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by netglen (253539)

    Regardless of which uber phone/OS device you chose, it'll still cost you an arm and a leg for the monthly data service rate.

  • by Doc Ruby (173196) on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @03:17PM (#25559567) Homepage Journal

    I hope that Google's "end game" (really just a beginning, natch) is to force open access to wireless carrier networks. "Roaming" charges and other lockins that bundle the physical network with the data, its servers, and (in the US) even the client HW are entirely against the openness of networks that has made them extremely valuable for everyone. Until networks were opened and unbundled, they were not so much engines for growth as they were accessories. Telcos and other network operators long ago stopped innovating in any area other than lobbying, lawsuits and restrictive licensing. All the growth in value comes from people competing to offer services on open networks.

    Google is one of those innovative competitors. I hope they can force Verizon, Sprint, AT&T, T-Mobile and the few other wireless carriers to join the 21st Century's openness and growth.

  • by BlackCreek (1004083) on Wednesday October 29, 2008 @04:22PM (#25560395)
    Today from engaget: http://www.engadget.com/2008/10/29/asus-said-to-be-launching-android-handset-in-first-half-of-09/ [engadget.com]

    [Asus' phone] will roll out sometime in the first half of 2009 (we're guessing late first half),

  • If the NeoFreeRunner [does] gets it's port to Android in the next few weeks, then all the clones will adopt Android. I mean the FreeRunner is in the end, a cheap commodity hardware experiment, with an OSS design (CAD and electronics!), not like a optimized/disposable RIM or iPhone.. Just get the bill of materials, substitute a 3G chip and bigger battery and you can have better-than iPhone capability for

    Worse case, is that if the Freerunner port comes out, I can see a bigger vendor than FIC turn out Neo-li

    • Now, if only someone would do with Edge or HSDPA on phones what PPP did for the Internet in homes. Cheap, ubiquitous access without huge overages for actually using your connection would be nice. Really high speeds can come later, after I can use ssh from anywhere in the country with the same phone and download more than a DVD's worth of data a month.

  • If people gladly replaced iPhone's simple Objective C interfaces to run Goog's insanely complex Java implementations instead, that would be something about human nature.

  • It's not taking over the whole world if you don't include China. China's part of the world, too. :-/

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