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Google To Suspend Mobile Phone Launch In China 172

Posted by Soulskill
from the awaiting-further-developments dept.
An anonymous reader tips news that Google has decided to delay the launch of two mobile phones in China after the recent censorship conflict with the Chinese government. The phones were developed with Samsung and Motorola, and both of them run Android. A related article in BusinessWeek wonders whether Google's new stance on censorship will halt the progress Android is making in China, the world's largest mobile market. "The country was well on its way to helping Google exploit Android. Chinese handset makers such as Huawei and ZTE have been some of the earliest supporters of the upstart operating system. China Mobile already sells its own version of an Android-based phone system called OPhone. Motorola is making a big push into the Chinese market with smartphones based on the Android OS. And China's Lenovo has developed numerous Android-based products, including the LePhone. Any undue pressure from the establishment would mean that most of these companies would have to abandon Android in favor of other mobile operating environments."
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Google To Suspend Mobile Phone Launch In China

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  • by dingen (958134) on Tuesday January 19, 2010 @10:12AM (#30818712)

    Although it's hard to say no to market where 100 Million ad impressions is a slow day.

    That's exactly the problem right there. It boils down to this: Google needs China more than China needs Google. So China can do whatever they want and Google will always have to either accept it, or quit.

  • Re:Dumb question (Score:4, Informative)

    by Chrisq (894406) on Tuesday January 19, 2010 @10:17AM (#30818766)
    Most in Taiwan ... not China's favourite place
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 19, 2010 @10:23AM (#30818814)

    They do have a third option.

    The so called "great firewall" isn't all that great. It's pretty cobbled together, and distributed. The bulk of the censoring is temporary, achieved by inspecting packets and then spamming the end points with reset packets.
    If you've ever used the internet in China, then you might have had a web page begin to load, but then stall. If you reload you get nothing, until around 10 min later when the RST spam stops, and the cycle repeats.

    Google should switch on SSL for all Chinese traffic (including ad impressions). Google won't appear weak, and China will have to use the evil card and IP block. China has plenty of google loving geeks, and they will notice.

  • by adosch (1397357) on Tuesday January 19, 2010 @10:35AM (#30818928)
    It's definitely a good thing that Google held off launch in China; Asian companies are the central hub for embedded technologies, although I think the U.S. gets the brunt of garbage technological imports, but the Chinese population long ago adopted and integrated cell phone usage into their daily lives bigtime. They've been power-using phones long before anyone in the U.S. started promoting it. PDA's where always a big thing, but until the iPhone and Blackberry craze of 2008-2009, we didn't see anything like that virally spread, phone wise. TFA is right; China probably has something total to their population and market that rival very well with the Android and why move away from that? It's not to say China's techies or phone enthusiasts would shy away from trying something new, but like I said, they've been integrating phone usage into their lives for a lot longer than we in the U.S. have nation-wide.
  • by Primitive Pete (1703346) on Tuesday January 19, 2010 @11:02AM (#30819268)
    Yeah, "not enough local movies" seems like a predictable outcome of suppressing free speech.
  • by gad_zuki! (70830) on Tuesday January 19, 2010 @12:19PM (#30820338)

    I call fallacy of idealizing the past here. China has been a manufacturing powerhouse since the 1970s. So 40 years now. So you are saying you want to bring back American factories and conditions from the 1960s? That time in manufacturing was best known for lawsuits, strikes, poor quality control, union corruption, and overall fucktardness.

    The reality is our economy (or any for that matter) doesnt work if we paid factory workers 55k a year with benefits. As far as "exploiting" the workforce: Are you willing to pay 2 to 3x the price of your goods for the sake of a factory worker's wellbeing? Well, what do you expect to pay them? Their wages are competitive for the demand of their skills. The guy in the US making 10 dollars an hour on the lathe isnt too different than the guy making 2 dollars an hour in China, when you compare purchasing power of that money in those countries.

    Look, Im not some super free-market guy, but using loaded language like "exploited" and pretending that manufacturing in the past was some kind of ideal job is just being disingenuous. The invisible hand of the market controls a lot of this and the largest part of that hand is you and me demanding cheap prices for good like cars, computers, phones, etc. The boogeyman is you and me, not necessarily some big government entity holding everyone down.

Murphy's Law, that brash proletarian restatement of Godel's Theorem. -- Thomas Pynchon, "Gravity's Rainbow"

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