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The Google Phone?

kdawson posted more than 7 years ago | from the move-over-apple dept.

Google 85

VE3OGG writes "There has been ample hype over the last several years that Apple's iPhone was just around the corner. (Though a product named iPhone was just recently released by Cisco / Linksys.) Well, while Apple fans continue to salivate at the thought of a phone powered by the company-of-cool, the index-everything-while-doing-no-evil company may be setting itself up to produce their own Google phone in partnership with Orange."

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85 comments

Hype Killing Sentence (2, Funny)

PoloniumSandwich (1035998) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325226)

From the article:
The device would not be revolutionary: manufactured by HTC, a Taiwanese firm specialising in smart phones and Personal Data Assistants (PDAs), it might have a screen similar to a video iPod.
Can't wait to get my hands on one!

Re:Hype Killing Sentence (1)

jonbryce (703250) | more than 7 years ago | (#17328714)

I pretty much already have my hands on one as far as I can see. It is from O2 rather than Orange, but Orange sell exactly the same thing with a slightly different name.

It is a handset made by HTC, and I can get pretty much everything on it with the bundled Internet Explorer, including a lot of Google stuff, and for the sites that don't work on Internet Explorer, I have installed Mozilla.

If this is true... (0, Offtopic)

bogaboga (793279) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325230)

...then Google TV will not be very far off, though I wonder why company and government officials always decline confirming or denying so called rumors. Some like those in our [US] government will simply say "no comment!"

Re:If this is true... (1)

SheeEttin (899897) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325318)

Google doesn't like rumors to get out any more than they must. They don't want people to say, "Oh, Google's going to have HD TV running on fiber within the next two years" because that's probably not going to happen.

Re:If this is true... (4, Insightful)

Billosaur (927319) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325772)

But then again, I think they do like rumors getting out, at least ones that are false, as it keeps their competition guessing, and may get them to sink money into areas Google isn't going to compete with them in. Disinformation can be mighty useful in the corporate world.

Re:If this is true... (2, Insightful)

krakelohm (830589) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326426)

True, but there is the downside of customers or potential customers getting excited about false rumors. Most of the time products that actually come to fruition are no match for the fantastic rumors that fly wildly. Apple has this problem quite a bit.

Re:If this is true... (3, Funny)

FLEB (312391) | more than 7 years ago | (#17331626)

So the best thing to do is start rumors about things you have no interest in whatsoever, to have no chance or intent of competing with your own hype.

So, Google Automotive-- what's the word?

Re:If this is true... (1)

Lord Flipper (627481) | more than 7 years ago | (#17333028)

Most of the time products that actually come to fruition are no match for the fantastic rumors that fly wildly. Apple has this problem quite a bit.

Yeah, those quad xeons sure disappointed a ton of people, and Apple's share price action over the last five years is a real strong indicator of a general dissatisfaction with their hardware, software, engineering, resale value, etc... unh huh, right.

Were you the guy that greeted the rumor of an mp3 player from Cupertino with "Why, there's plenty of those, already?" I thought so... ha ha ha. Mmhmm, Microsoft has a much better track record with meeting/exceeding expectations, eh? And then there's Sony. Yeah, poor old disappointing Apple, death must be just around the corner.

Re:If this is true... (2, Informative)

ScentCone (795499) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325654)

though I wonder why company and government officials always decline confirming or denying so called rumors

Well, among things, a company like Google is actually owned by its investors, and shares are publicly traded. The SEC gets very, very testy (as do litigious shareholders and their parasitic lawyers) when a publicly traded company does anything that can be construed as falsely painting a picture of business prospects that might impact the value of a share in the company.

In short, regulations and lawsuits have trained companies to opt for silence, rather than risk being called deceptive - even if they don't start the rumor they're not commenting on. And if someone who works there starts the rumor (or can be said to have leaked something), all sorts of insider-trading ugliness can get bandied about. You get what you reward, and you suppress what you punish.

Re:If this is true... (1)

Suhas (232056) | more than 7 years ago | (#17332024)

when a publicly traded company does anything that can be construed as falsely painting a picture of business prospects that might impact the value of a share in the company.

Tell that to Microsoft

No, this puts another nail in Microsoft's coffin (2, Interesting)

skiingyac (262641) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326636)

I don't think Google is doing this for the purpose of enabling fancy feature X or getting its hands in TV/radio/whatever distribution.

The real killer is that right now the vast majority of Google's users are able to use Google's service thanks to the Microsoft monopoly providing said user with an OS and/or browser. If I were Google, (secret) priority #1 would be to sidestep Microsoft as soon as possible.

If Google can give people usable cell phone based interfaces to its services, then all Google has to worry about is providing quality services that people want to use, which they seem to be able to with little effort.

The only middleman then is the cell phone providers, which Google can sidestep by rolling out its own wireless network, probably similar to what Sanswire [sanswire.com] wants to do (or Google will buy Sanswire) with cheap blimps, then Google can have a way to sell ads to people 24/7 with a device that effectively costs Google $0 because people will be paying to make wireless VoIP calls using the same device.

This is all hypothetical of course, but its exactly what I would suggest if I worked at Google.

Re:No, this puts another nail in Microsoft's coffi (1)

mark9white (591395) | more than 7 years ago | (#17331906)

Another nail in MS's coffin when ...

MS is earning a license fee per phone sold?

(look at the article ... HTC are making the phones ... all HTC-manufactured phones run Windows Mobile ... )

Re:If this is true... (1)

dangitman (862676) | more than 7 years ago | (#17330086)

In the future, we will all have a giant physical copy of the letters G-o-o-g-l-e in our living rooms. They can be reconfigured for any purpose - as furniture, TV, games, sex toys, telephones, hula hoops, etc. That's what all those shipping containers are for.

The first thing I'd do (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17325254)

Type in 'pizza' and press "I'm Feeling Lucky".

Re:The first thing I'd do (-1, Flamebait)

Joebert (946227) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325538)

And you would deserve every second of Anal Fustration you got after pressing that button.

Re:The first thing I'd do (1)

Joebert (946227) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325790)

Alright, I'll take the offtopic, just make sure you think of the phrase "Google Bomb" when the pizza place "Feeling Lucky" got you has you sitting on the crapper. ;)

I will neither confirm nor deny these rumours..... (0, Redundant)

Ribbo.com (885396) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325264)

Well Sir, then you leave us no choice but to Google for the answer!

Glad they're calling in the pros (2, Interesting)

Sciros (986030) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325270)

So, an internet-enabled phone that isn't total rubbish at it? Sounds good to me.
I wonder exactly how much of the software Google will be writing, because as more mobiles become internet-capable it seems to me that making viruses for them can start to make sense. I don't think most mobile software is all that secure, but I'm thinking if Google has a stake in it, it will at least be secure *enough.*

Re:Glad they're calling in the pros (2, Interesting)

asliarun (636603) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325492)

From TFA, it looks like the Big G is mainly focusing on optimizing bandwidth by compression, and i'm guessing, by using a Google proxy. On a side note, I think that two of the biggest problems with surfing the internet via a cellphone are
1. Small display
2. Input interface

The first is getting bigger, but there's only so much room to grow, especially if you want to keep the form factor within reasonable limits so that the damn thing will fit in your pocket.

Regarding the second, i was thinking that it might be a good idea to have a good voice recognition software to do the user input instead of using the microscopic cellphone buttons. Alternately, if a good touch-sensitive interface can be built that lets us write text directly into the URL window or textboxes, it would make surfing so much easier. This can be made better if the UI recognizes that we're trying to type into a small textbox, and automatically zooms the textbox for us.

Perhaps, someone's already done all this, as i'm a bit of a cellphone luddite, but does this make sense?

Re:Glad they're calling in the pros (2, Insightful)

Sciros (986030) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325618)

Well they're good ideas in any case. Something along the lines of a Nintendo DS screen would be ideal, as that is one of the better touch-sensitive screens out there as far as I know. Voice recognition software... well, Google ought to have the best out there given their vast amount of available training data for speech processing.

OMG a thought for the future (and yes Google is the closest to making this a reality): voice recognition matched with machine translation matched with sophisticated voice synthesis = complete language independence! Now *that* would be one heck of an advancement in communication. (yeah I know it's off-topic but I needed to write it down).

Re:Glad they're calling in the pros (1)

CmdrGravy (645153) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325930)

i was thinking that it might be a good idea to have a good voice recognition software to do the user input instead of using the microscopic cellphone buttons
You think I'm going to sit on the train yelling

"hardcore asian hotties"
"damn phone, H-A-R-D-C-O-R-E A-S-I-A-N H-O-T-T-I-E-S !"
"Engage ! E-N-G-A-G-E Dammit !"

Not likely.

Re:Glad they're calling in the pros (2, Insightful)

moresheth (678206) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325950)

Another thing to note is that most websites aren't set up for mobile devices yet.

The good thing is that it can be done easily, and everything's in place for it to happen. It's one of the reasons that everyone gets excited about table-less designs. All it takes is a separate stylesheet to make your website formatted for a tiny iPod-sized screen.

Now all we need is for everyone to start making websites properly.

Re:Glad they're calling in the pros (1)

AaronLawrence (600990) | more than 7 years ago | (#17335524)

Any links? I found
http://www.mikeindustries.com/blog/archive/2005/07 /make-your-site-mobile-friendly [mikeindustries.com]
about server-side preprocessing to remove crud, but did you have something else in mind?
Rewriting it all in XML or WML is not very feasible for most sites...

Re:Glad they're calling in the pros (1)

moresheth (678206) | more than 7 years ago | (#17349240)

Not sure if you, or anyone else, will see this, but I figured I'd respond in case you do.

There are multiple ways. The main one I was thinking about was simply defining a "handheld" stylesheet. For websites, the common way someone is going to view it would be using the "screen" media type. But you can also define other media types, like "print", "projection", "aural", and other things. You can find a list of them in several places [w3.org] . The one for mobile devices would be "handheld." The idea is that the content will simply transform how it displays based on how you are seeing it.

Slashdot uses a handheld media type in one of its stylesheets. Honestly, I've never tried visiting it with a handheld, but I guess they are doing it.

There is a very recent article on alistapart.com [alistapart.com] that uses javascript to change the layout based on the screen size, but in the case of mobile devices, many may not be able to run the script, so it's use is questionable.

The W3C also has defined the "best practices" for mobile devices, and there are couple of different ways [dev.mobi] to check them. In these cases, you'd pretty much have to deliver different content if their user-agent shows up as a mobile device, which would require scripting.

If you are serving different content, you can use the specialized version [wikipedia.org] of xhtml for it.

Hope this helps.

Re:Glad they're calling in the pros (1)

AaronLawrence (600990) | more than 7 years ago | (#17350318)

Thanks for the updates. Slashdot might be using a handheld stylesheet, but it's pretty difficult to use on my phone - scrolling for miles to get to the content, if the browser doesn't just give up.
As you (and other commentators) say: just changing the presentation isn't enough, on a mobile you probably want to do much more drastic things like:
- make the pages physically much smaller
- remove most of the navigation
- possibly move the remaining navigation to separate pages
- structure the content differently
It's debatable whether a site like slashdot can ever be usable on a mobile device, it's just too heavy.
I don't think there is any easy answer, in fact. The idea of preprocessing on the server is probably the best one can do without massively refactoring your website.

Re:Glad they're calling in the pros (1)

Brazilian Joe (514100) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325994)

Voice recognition wil never fly in software. it's waaay too computationally expensive. It'll take silicon to make it viable. only now with 2-4 cores the CPUs are going to get there in terms of processiong power to do it real time , and maybe leave a core available to keep the system responsive. And to make it happen in a mobile device, well you will need it in silicon for sure. That gies us one other type of core to dream about in AMD's fusion, a voice recognition processing unit...

Re:Glad they're calling in the pros (2, Interesting)

RESPAWN (153636) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326916)

I would really like to know what exactly you are referring to when you speak of voice recognition. My phone (LG vx9900, aka LG enV) has voice recognition for a list of commands. In fact, the amazing thing to me compared to my last phones is that I haven't had to train it. It's able to parse the name I speak and match it to a name in my address book with about 90% success rate. Note that this includes several friends with names that the phone itself has trouble pronouncing. Which brings me to the other interesting thing about the phone: voice synthesization. It will tell me out loud who's calling (by name if they're in my address book or by number if they're not) and it will read back my text messages to me. I think this is all done on something like a 400MHz embedded chip.

roll up screen (1)

fyoder (857358) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325996)

The first is getting bigger, but there's only so much room to grow, especially if you want to keep the form factor within reasonable limits so that the damn thing will fit in your pocket.


Earth Final Conflict global communicator [movieprop.com] (bottom of page) Obviously this is just the prop without the special effect, but with a flexible screen that rolled up into the handle, we could have decent size displays in devices that fit comfortably in a pocket.

Re:Glad they're calling in the pros (2, Insightful)

RESPAWN (153636) | more than 7 years ago | (#17327064)

Or we could all just get phones with built-in QWERTY keyboards. I've never been a huge fan of text recognition software -- my handwriting is so bad that I always had issues on my Palm. Now that I've bought a phone with a QWERTY keyboard, I rarely carry my PDA. It's a heck of a lot easier to type out a note to myself on the keyboard than it ever was to write it on my Palm PDA. It's also a heck of a lot easier to enter data on websites with a full keyboard. :)

Re:Glad they're calling in the pros (1)

jonbryce (703250) | more than 7 years ago | (#17328802)

They have already done it. Since TFA mentions Orange, I'll link to their offering - http://shop.orange.co.uk/shop/show/handset/orange_ spv_m3100/detail/pay_monthly [orange.co.uk] . O2 and TMobile have identical offerings, except they are called XDAs and MDAs rather than SPVs. Vodafone have a fairly similar offering, but it is an IPaq rather than an HTC model.

We keep hearing rumors! (0, Redundant)

drewzhrodague (606182) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325302)

We keep hearing rumors, and opinions, but when *are* we going to have an Apple-branded phone? I can't imagine it is this difficult to build (but I can imagine Verizon being an asshole about it).

While we're at it, I'm still waiting for my flying car.

Missing option (0, Redundant)

Silver Sloth (770927) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325398)

And Duke Nukem Forever.

Re:We keep hearing rumors! (0, Redundant)

danpsmith (922127) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326004)

While we're at it, I'm still waiting for my flying car.

Yeah, and I'm still waiting for Duke Nukem Forever and the new Guns and Roses album.

Re:We keep hearing rumors! (2, Insightful)

iabervon (1971) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326830)

They'll release it when they can get a cellphone chipset in quantity for less than their profit margin on iPods at the time (after the costs of their components have come down over the course of a product cycle). Then they decide that what they'll announce as the difference between iPod generations is that the new ones are incidentally unlocked GSM cell phones.

Alternatively, if they decide people want them enough, they do a generation where the storage difference between the $350 and $250 iPods is less, but the $350 one is a cell phone.

In any case, I bet that Apple will never release a device marketted as a cell phone, because people expect cell phones to be locked, and sold cheap by carriers, and Apple isn't going to want to play that game for a variety of reasons. Nobody's going to pay $350 for an Apple cell phone that plays music, but they'll buy a $350 iPod that makes phone calls, even though these are logically the same device at the same price.

Re:We keep hearing rumors! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17326926)

It's not hard to build a phone. Heck you can just re-brand an existing phone but I'm sure Apple intends to sell a phone that can do something no other phone can. They are working on a new TYPE of phone. This does take time. They have only one chance to get this right. The first phone they offer really has to be a big hit. I suspect that it will be very tightly integrated into Mac OS X. This is a feature that only Apple can offer and I'm sure that Apple wants to make a phone that only they could have built. Strong OSX integration would be an Apple only feature you could not buy from any other supplier

Indexing my Conversations? (1)

Inexile2002 (540368) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325364)

Is that possible? Could they do key word searches and then transmit adds relevant to my conversation to the screen? I use Gmail and they scan my email and for some reason that really doesn't bother me. But my phone calls? I mean, they're probably really just trying to create a really cool delivery platform for different Google mobile apps, and integrate cool location specific stuff. Right?

Re:Indexing my Conversations? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17325442)

Or you can look at it from another very plausible perspective: it's another smart step in expanding a really brilliant method of global surveillance; google's information empire today allows for knowing and finding out anything about anyone using any of their services; their e-mail, their spreadsheets, their calendar, their search engine, their wtfanything etc. A phone sounds like a very good idea to fit in the same context. And how plausible is it to think that their fortune is built and continues to grow on simply delivering "content based" advertisements, and that that would be their only strive? "Let's make a phone.. the IDEAL platform for increasing our advertisement campaigns!".. Maybe in a perfect world..

Re:Indexing my Conversations? (1)

Marxist Hacker 42 (638312) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326294)

It's possible. Generic speech recognition for decision trees may be a long way off, but speech-to-text engines with 80% accuracy have been around since the mid 1990s. It is entirely possible for an IP telephony company to record all conversations into text files and index them. It's also perfectly legal- as ISPs have evaded, so far, becoming common carriers under FCC rules.

Big Brother Google (4, Insightful)

EtherealStrife (724374) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325386)

So they know our credit card info, billing addresses, real names, etc from Google Checkout, they read our emails (Gmail), they know what we've been searching for (Google Search), they have access to our images (Picasa), access to our videos (Google Video), access to our IM habits (Google Talk), they track our movements (Google Earth), and now they want to monitor our telephone conversations? Next we'll be hearing that Cheney's been having secret meetings with Schmidt. . . . :P

All kidding aside, it's going to be interesting to see what Google eventually does with all this stored information.

Re:Big Brother Google (3, Funny)

Sciros (986030) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325434)

Replace humanity with doppelgangers and by the time the few that are left figure out it will be far too late. Unless those few are ninjas; then the ownage that ensues will be amazing.

Re:Big Brother Google (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17325446)

So they know our credit card info, billing addresses, real names, etc from Google Checkout, they read our emails (Gmail), they know what we've been searching for (Google Search), they have access to our images (Picasa), access to our videos (Google Video), access to our IM habits (Google Talk), they track our movements (Google Earth), and now they want to monitor our telephone conversations? Next we'll be hearing that Cheney's been having secret meetings with Schmidt. . . . :P

Don't forget that they sell to us our tinfoil hats too.

Re:Big Brother Google (4, Insightful)

garcia (6573) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325514)

they track our movements (Google Earth), and now they want to monitor our telephone conversations?

They'd be tracking our movements via GPS/triangulation, calling habits (pizza/takeout?), and exactly what we're surfing (not just searching!) for. I'm sure the "monitoring of our telephone conversations" would be to display relevant ads on the screen after we regained Internet connectivity.

To answer your final question: they are going to use it to make more money.

Re:Big Brother Google (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17326220)

they are going to use it to make more money.

No! You're wrong! they'd never do such a thing. They do no evil. they have no interest in profits. they're as pure as the driven snow. they just want to open up everything to everyone. the billions they make (while never producing a physical product) will go to feeding the poor. they'll be granted sainthood soon. they'll ascend straight to heaven because of the righteousness that they promote. they'd never actually seek to [gasp!] make a profit from their work. profits are evil. bill gates and oil companies are evil for making profits. apple, google and nintendo are good and there is no way that they ever intended to make money. they're just like all the other starving idiots^H^H^H^H^H artists out there.

[/end of fanboi rant]

Re:Big Brother Google (1)

Joebert (946227) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325620)

All kidding aside, it's going to be interesting to see what Google eventually does with all this stored information.

Isn't it obvious ?
They'll become the greatest target for outsourcing by the North Pole.

Re:Big Brother Microsoft, too! (1)

rumith (983060) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326082)

Why does it bother you that Google will be able to collect all your data? Technically, Microsoft is capable of collecting data from virtually all internet-connected desktop machines in the world, and you can't be sure that there aren't killswitches or other pleasant surprises in their software. Worse, I am positively sure that there are triggers in Windows and its companion software that can be used to collect your data, revoke your access to computer, format your drive - and they're there waiting for their hour. Google only has the information that you give to it willingly, Microsoft can have ALL of your data without prior notice. Unless you're a free software user, that is.

Re:Big Brother Google (1)

indigest (974861) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326902)

I agree that privacy is an extremely important concern. With that said, there is tremendous potential for a "not evil" system that has so much information on users. With knowledge about my buying habits, emails, search queries, video preferences, etc.., such a system could introduce me to new products, movies, and TV shows that I don't know about but would probably enjoy. This is the concept behind the Netflix recommendation system but expanded to cover a lot more things than movies. Amazon comes to mind as also having a recommendation system, although theirs is particularly insidious.

One really cool/creepy feature is that such a system could introduce complete strangers that would be likely to become friends. Why not have GMate or GFriend for those that choose to participate? The system would certainly have a lot more information to base their matches on than whatever false image of themselves people are trying to project using conventional dating and friending sites.

While they must be very careful about privacy issues, there are a lot of good things they could do with a such an accurate picture of the users. Personally, I would love to have a tool that lets me know which TV shows are worth watching for the upcoming season based on my preferences and interests. And helping us to meet people in a similar geographical area with similar hobbies and interests would be pretty cool as well.

Since when is a corporation "cool"? (0, Redundant)

xxxJonBoyxxx (565205) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325400)

Apple fans continue to salivate at the thought of a phone powered by the company-of-cool


Since when is a corporation "cool"? Are you honestly telling me there are halfwits out there who would buy ANYTHING Apple might crap out? (Well, I suppose there are; I had a neighbor once who had a room full of random junk all branded with Coca-Cola logos.)

Re:Since when is a corporation "cool"? (2, Insightful)

Silver Sloth (770927) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325516)

Since when is a corporation cool - since forever, that's when. It's called brand image. It is such a significant part of most purchasing decisions that companies will spend huge parts of their advertising budgets enhancing it. Indeed, most ads are selling a lifestyle aspiration, not functionality. i.e. 'drive a MyCarName because it's cool, not 'drive a MyCarName because it gets good gas milage'.

We /.ers are far too Intelligent to fall for this sort of thing and always make purchasing decisions based on rational argement. And if you'll believe that....

An Industry Truism (2, Insightful)

CantStopDancing (1036410) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325900)

People buy on emotion, and justify on fact.

Pre-purchase: "Drinking that beer will get me laid."
Post-purchase: "I like this beer because it has high alcohol content."

An ex-boss of mine used to tell me that even our (then-current) customers bought based on "how will this product help get me laid?" - and we weren't even selling a sexy product.

Re:An Industry Truism (1)

Sciros (986030) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326470)

Brown paper bags aren't sexy, but some people just aren't a visual treat so I'm not surprised.

Apple junk is Cool (1)

wsanders (114993) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326446)

I had several calls when I gave away a Powerbook 100, minus disk drive, on Craigslist, and only a few years ago even managed to sell the dot-matrix printer that came with my Mac 128 for $10 - so there are people out there who have room for this stuff in their house.

I won't waste good electricy on anything slower than a 500 mhz Pentium III myself, though. And I've kept the Mac 128, which is trotted out accasionally as a nightlight / digital clock.

Re:Since when is a corporation "cool"? (1)

DeathPenguin (449875) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326972)

Yes, as this cartoon [theinquirer.net] illustrates.

How much growth is left... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17325470)

How much growth is left in the cell phone biz? Once everybody who needs or wants one, has one, I don't see the introduction of a new phone being that big a deal. I'm not going to switch my phone until the end of my two year contract, and even then I'll probably hold onto it for a while. And of course, everybody wonders how much growth is left in Google, but they keep raising the bar. I think the guy who said Google is going to mint millionaire brainiacs who will start their own companies had the most likely scenario for GDecline.

Re:How much growth is left... (1)

c_forq (924234) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326118)

I think there is quite a bit, every year there is a new batch of teenagers getting phones. Plus I've gotten a new phone every time I've renewed my contract, as every time there has been one better then what I have (I'm not a big fan of the camera-swiss-army knife phones, but have upgraded from a massive brick to a smaller brick, from a smaller brick to a flip phone, a flip phone to a newer flip-phone with a color screen and back-lit keys, and now to a slider that I can leave on for days without charging). As soon as a good Windows Mobile phone with GPS and WiFi comes state-side I will probably upgrade to that, but so far they only seem to exist abroad or on GSM networks - which my carrier has yet to support.

Re:How much growth is left... (1)

maztuhblastah (745586) | more than 7 years ago | (#17327006)

"How much growth is left in the music player biz? Once everybody who needs or wants one, has one, I don't see the introduction of a new player being that big a deal."

Five years ago, the above text wouldn't be too far-fetched...

Re:How much growth is left... (1)

AxiomOfExtensionalit (876142) | more than 7 years ago | (#17328742)

"How much growth is left in the cell phone biz? Once everybody who needs or wants one, has one, I don't see the introduction of a new phone being that big a deal." Yeah, as if that's ever going to happen. Try saying the same thing about the television industry! I've never been to a house without a television, yet there's a whole section in Future Shop for televisions. Aren't there enough TVs out there? What about..computers? The vast majority of people who can afford a computer have at least one. Yet I'm sure that if I were to tell half the people here (no insult intended) that nVidia just came out with a graphics card that's 1.00000000001% better than yours you'd go OMGWTF why don't I have that, now I can play WOW with uhhh....the same performance, but, it'd be COOLER! Cool! I'm going to get one. People have lots of stuff, and more stuff than they'll ever need. Yet getting more stuff, and getting better stuff is just cool and satisfies a need which is embedded in our mindsets. So even if in ten years every Joe down the street has two cellphones, when a new one is released with two more megapixels on the camera and a self-destruct feature, then you bet that the easily hyped portion of the population will go immediately for it, and then social pressures will prompt many others to go as well. Not to mention that people are being born all the time, and there are so many people out there that you underestimate how much need there really is. New models of cars, computers, gadgets, and anything else that satisfies our desire for having fun will always be in high demand, regardless of what already exists.

Names are important. (4, Funny)

zenmojodaddy (754377) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325534)

I move that it be called the Gone. Which gives ample opportunity to display context-sensitive Gone-Ads. At least it would if I didn't have this dang restraining order...

Re:Names are important. (1)

bughunter (10093) | more than 7 years ago | (#17330626)

While 'Gone' is creative, I believe Steve Martin coined the best term for the Google phone in the 1970's.

Googlephonic.

Because you know... it, too, will sound like shit.

/maybe it's the needle

iPhone could still be the name for Apple's phone (2, Informative)

adzoox (615327) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325540)

One is a VOIP phone (released by Cisco/Linksys) ... the other is a cellphone/iPod hybrid ... I honestly think Apple could say that is enough of a differentiation for patent trademark disputes. The main thing to note is that the rumor mill is the one calling it the "iPhone" ... not Apple ... evnthough Apple owns the trademark internationally and owns the domain iPhone.org. Also, this pretty credible storyboard was published yesterday noting the name "iPhone".

iPhone Storyboard or Ad Design? [fixyourthinking.com]

Re:iPhone could still be the name for Apple's phon (2, Funny)

korbin_dallas (783372) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326526)

I better go trademarkthese names then eh?

iYack.
iChattyCathy.
iMultiMediaDevice.
iVoice.
iCell.
iCall.
iTalk.
iTunesTalk.
iTele.
iTelephone.
iAnnoyance.
iBrick.
iPea, which of course goes right along with iPod.
iFone, duh?
iExpensive.

Re:iPhone could still be the name for Apple's phon (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17326650)

Apple does not have iPhone trademarked, try again.

Re:iPhone could still be the name for Apple's phon (1)

RESPAWN (153636) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326666)

One is a VOIP phone (released by Cisco/Linksys) ... the other is a cellphone/iPod hybrid ... I honestly think Apple could say that is enough of a differentiation for patent trademark disputes.
I disagree. They are both phones first and foremost. It doesn't matter that one will use GSM and/or CDMA technology and the other VOIP+WiFi -- the primary function for both devices will be to make telephone calls. And, I think that any judge would find that the items are both too similar to use the same product name. Furthermore, since Cisco/Linksys has already released working products under the iPhone brand name, I would wager that chances are slim that Apple would be able to obtain the iPhone brand name without a large outlay of cash in the direction of Cicso/Linksys

Re:iPhone could still be the name for Apple's phon (1)

hehman (448117) | more than 7 years ago | (#17327662)

Do you really think they could get away with making a portable phone called an iPhone when someone else is making a portable phone called an iPhone and has the US trademark to do so? Apple Computer has been dogged for decades about how similar its name is to a record label, for crying out loud. Oh, and IANAL. Somehow I think you needed to say that too.

Re:iPhone could still be the name for Apple's phon (1)

adzoox (615327) | more than 7 years ago | (#17347806)

And in each case the matter has been settled without a verdict or in Apple's favor (concerning Apple records)

Apple owns trademarks for the iPhone in a dozen countries - check here [fiercewireless.com]

gPhone! (1)

Enzo1977 (112600) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325784)

I want deets on this new gPhone!!!

Re:gPhone! (1)

psxman (925240) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325850)

No, that's GNOME. Google's product would be called Google Phone (beta).

Google takes over the world (1)

porkThreeWays (895269) | more than 7 years ago | (#17325896)

Really, I'm fine with google taking over the world as long as someday they come out with a shipping technology. It will enable you to move 5000 G-units an hour.

Google and Orange -- marketing focus group last yr (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17326254)

Prob. breaking an NDA, so posting anonymously. Over a year ago I participated in a focus group on cell phone usage. The premise was that Orange was looking to make the move to the US, and we were to evaluate their marketing plan. The session was pretty standard until they took out (presumaby simulated) pics of the phones showing tight integration with Google Maps, and Google chat. Quite frankly, it was really exciting -- particularly using location based services with graphical integration. All the standard stuff was bandied about, but because it was Google, it looked nicer. Orange was thinking of marketing cell phones w/o a contract, and charging for the phone -- or at least the focus group wanted to know what we thought of that option.

"Two most powerful brands"? (2)

Reality Master 101 (179095) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326296)

The collaboration between two of the most powerful brands in technology is seen as a potential catalyst...

Who the hell is Orange? OK, I looked them up -- they're a big company, and maybe they're known more outside the US, but that brand is hardly on the same level as Google when it comes to world-wide recognition.

Re:"Two most powerful brands"? (3, Informative)

elFarto the 2nd (709099) | more than 7 years ago | (#17326912)

In the UK they are one of the 4 big mobile phone providers (O2, Vodaphone, T-Mobile and Orange).

Regards
elFarto

Re:"Two most powerful brands"? (1)

Albanach (527650) | more than 7 years ago | (#17327048)

they're a big company, and maybe they're known more outside the US, but that brand is hardly on the same level as Google when it comes to world-wide recognition.
They are indeed a big company - owned by France Telecom. But yes, the Oramge brand is much more visible in the UK where they actually trade than in the United States. That's why the article was in a UK newspaper talking about a phone launch in the UK. I'd imagine if Google are planning a phone launch in the United States they'll probably choose to partner with a carrier that actually operates in the US.

Re:"Two most powerful brands"? (2, Funny)

QRDeNameland (873957) | more than 7 years ago | (#17327282)

What surprises me is that no one had yet commented that there may soon be a valid comparison between Apples and Oranges.

Re:"Two most powerful brands"? (1)

Peter La Casse (3992) | more than 7 years ago | (#17327470)

What surprises me is that no one had yet commented that there may soon be a valid comparison between Apples and Oranges.

There are many valid comparisons between apples and oranges.

Re:"Two most powerful brands"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17327530)

Orange is a huge telecom company. The way I understand it though, is that the Orange name (Well know in Europe) is in use by multiple companies. Orange France being one of the largest. (I have only passing knowledge of Orange as an American, my knowledge of LogicaCMG and uOne is a little better though)

Many of the of major companies in international wireless business( names like Telecom Italia, Organe France, Vodafone, and T-Mobile) use products from uOne, a division/BU in LogicaCMG( another company not well known in the US - 30k+ employees, and also a powerful player/ if not the player in development and deployment of SMS (Text Messaging)). The uOne product is a VOIP based voicemail and messaging system that could make it plausible for a company like Orange to be easily adaptable to work with Google. Or for even for uOne and Orange to both work with Google. If I understand they are the only real competitor in their field. The other competitor of clout, pretty much uses an old version of the uOne software.

uOne itself was a concept born out of Bell Labs, before its practicality was hardly feasible (think dial-up and VOIP type issues, or even using coax for network cable).

new name (1)

solidtransient (883338) | more than 7 years ago | (#17327468)

I hope they call it the goophogle.

That's Hilarious +1 Funny (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17335744)

No mod points... but damn funny!

Microsoft fiddles with Zune while... (2, Funny)

PatPending (953482) | more than 7 years ago | (#17327862)

...Google is racing ahead.

Re:Microsoft fiddles with Zune while... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17331072)

That's the problem with Microsoft, they're imitators of the innovators, and often find themselves arriving to the party at the tail end of a trend.

Madly (2, Funny)

Brandybuck (704397) | more than 7 years ago | (#17329142)

Google madly searching for a way to generate revenue before their stockholders regain consciousness...

Google Mobile (1)

k1e0x (1040314) | more than 7 years ago | (#17330646)


Google already makes really good mobile phone software. Anyone try out the java Gmail or Google Maps applications for mobile?

They practically make similar mobile apps from Nokia, Ericsson, and Motorola look prehistoric.

Look out Skype.. (1)

k1e0x (1040314) | more than 7 years ago | (#17330720)


Also.. What about Google Talk to mobile or vice versa? That would rule.

Hmm (1)

TheShadowzero (884085) | more than 7 years ago | (#17332962)

The part about the Google phone giving you geographic-specific results..reminds me of an article here on /. a while ago that talked about future cell phones and how they would tell you these kinds of things..I can't find the link but I find this interesting.

a name for the venture? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17335460)

Given the names of the 2 partners in this venture, Orange and Google, I suggest that the new venture name itself Ogle.

thank you, I'm here all week..

The future (1)

d_54321 (446966) | more than 7 years ago | (#17464680)

This is how most people will talk in the year 2015:
" I was going to google my googled google, but then my boss's googley googler googled google google google."

  How google is that?
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