Win a T-Mobile G1 smartphone with Android Community!

Who doesn’t want a free Android smartphone? To celebrate the launch of T-Mobile’s G1, we are going to give the new handset away to one of our community members during our Live Blog of T-Mobile’s Android announcement on September 23rd . To be in with a chance of winning, you'll need to be a registered user and logged into the forum during the live blog. (http://live.androidcommunity.com). Sound simple? The winner will be selected at random and announced via the Live Blog. A notification will be sent out to the registered email of the user account, making it very important that the email address listed in your profile is correct. The winner then has 5 minutes to post in this forum to claim their prize. If the first winner doesn't speak up within five minutes (based on the forum clock), we'll pick another member at random and the process will start again. We'll continue until we have a winner!

The Future of Mobile Devices, according to Andy Rubin

When he's not obsessing over Android, director of mobile platforms Andy Rubin is busy obsessing over mobile devices in general.  In the latest of Google's soothsaying articles, the brains behind Android (and the Sidekick) looks at where ubiquitous computing is likely to take us in ten years time. 
"The phone that you have in your pocket, pack, or handbag is probably ten times more powerful than the PC you had on your desk only 8 or 9 years ago (assuming you even had a PC; most mobile users never have). It has a range of sensors that would do a martian lander proud: a clock, power sensor (how low is that battery?), thermometer (because batteries charge poorly at low temperatures), and light meter (to determine screen backlighting) on the more basic phones; a location sensor, accelerometer (detects vector and velocity of motion), and maybe even a compass on more advanced ones. And most importantly, it is by its very nature always connected" Andy Rubin, Google
The device Rubin envisages is a tool for sharing data, not just viewing it while away from your desk.  Users will be able to contribute text, video and images, as they do now, but also temperatures, GPS coordinates, weather and more.  And you'll be able to pull up that information, as it's relevant to you, in intuitive ways. If anything, Rubin's predictions are relatively straightforward - tame, even.  Perhaps he's limited himself on the understanding that, in ten years time, he'll still be around for people to shout "oi, Rubin, where's my personal butler cellphone?!" across the street.  Of the seven aspects he suggests, my personal favorite is augmented reality.  We wrote about the concept - and an app called Enkin - earlier on this year, and the idea of being presented with automatically researched and geographically specific information certainly fits my idea of what a mobile device should be doing for me. So I'll throw it over to you - you've heard my opinion, and Rubin's, but what do you think mobile devices will be doing in ten years time?  Let us know in the comments. [Thanks GreenLeaf!]

G1 appears on T-Mobile customer promotions page

The Android-based G1 has already started showing up on T-Mobile USA's website, as a promotions page for existing customers.  While the pre-registration link does not yet work, it's apparent confirmation that the device will be offered to existing T-Mobile users prior to general availability.

It also confirms the handset's name - the T-Mobile G1.  Up until now the device had been referred to as "T-Mobile's first Android-based device". There is still no word on pricing; the current rumors suggest $199, but that may not necessarily refer to the pre-registration price for existing subscribers.  T-Mobile have scheduled a launch event for the G1 on September 23rd, which Android Community will be Live Blogging at http://Live.AndroidCommunity.com/ [via Engadget]

T-Mobile G1 more live photos leak!

More live photos of T-Mobile's G1 smartphone - the Android-based handset by HTC, otherwise known as the Dream - have leaked. Courtesy of Rizzn at Utterli, the live images apparently come via an internal source at Google, who had been talking with an Android tester.

The tester in question had supposedly been using the G1 as his primary phone, confirming that the device is going through the final stages of testing in real-world scenarios. T-Mobile will be announcing the Android G1 on September 23rd, at an event that Android Community will be Live Blogging. No new details from the photos, nor any extra leaked specs, and it's unclear if there is any branding on the G1. What it does show is how much the device resembles the Sidekick, particularly when being used in horizontal mode with the QWERTY keyboard. [via Pestoala - Thanks Sebastian!]

T-Mobile ramps up 3G expansion in G1 preparation

T-Mobile USA have announced their latest 3G network timetable, and as you might expect it's heavily weighted toward providing coverage for the carrier's upcoming Android smartphone. By mid-October T-Mobile have pledged to have a further eight areas offering 3G, in addition to the existing thirteen. The new areas include Atlanta, Chicago, Los Angeles, Orlando, Philadelphia, Sacramento, San Francisco and Seattle. Their UMTS/HSDPA network is capable of download speeds up to 1Mbps. By the end of 2008, T-Mobile aims to have 27 US areas (including Birmingham, Denver, Detroit, Kansas City, Memphis and Tampa) with 3G service in operation, offering high-speed coverage to more than two-thirds of their existing data customers. The carrier has previously suggested that, in addition to the standard cellphones it offers, it will introduce "new and compelling data-centric, all-in-one devices". This could possibly be a reference to the T-Mobile G1, HTC's Dream for the T-Mobile USA network. [via SlashGear]

Google Mobilize Keynote Video with Rich Miner

Vincent is at the Mobilize conference in San Francisco today, and Google's Rich Miner took to the stage to discuss not only Android but the change in the mobile industry and the platforms it uses as a whole. As you might imagine, open-access is a common theme; both of platforms, such as Google's own Linux-based offering, and of internet access (the so-called "walled garden" versus "being able to go anywhere you want"). Miner described his key motivation for Android's development as being joining up the dots between different mobile applications. His illustration was Google Maps and integration with a handset's contacts book, and that users should be able to choose an address and automatically see it mapped out. Some of the legacy-free coding that PacketVideo's Joel Espelien talked about recently was also discussed, with Miner suggesting that the Android team had picked "best in class" providers to add their technology. He credits that for the strict timetables and the team's ability to keep to them. Check out the two parts of the video for full details of the half-hour keynote.  You can track more of our coverage of Mobilize over at Phone Magazine. Alternatively, watch the video as it happens at Qik.com/Android.

Big in Japan wins again: $700k startup funding

Big in Japan's bank account will be receiving its second major deposit of the year, as the company secured $700,000 of startup funding from Architel, an IT infrastructure company that also offers investment in early-stage Dallas-based tech firms. The money will be used both to develop ShopSavvy, the app Big in Japan are best known for, and the company itself into an "idea factory".

T-Mobile Android handset to retail for $199

According to the Wallstreet Journal, the first ever Google-powered handset will be selling for $199. And when you think about it, this makes perfect sense. The $199 price tag puts the new smartphone right in line with the competition, such as the iPhone, which is currently retailing for the same price. The HTC phone will feature a touchscreen and the Google-created Android operating system. Come Tuesday, we'll know much more about Android and the handset it's to be featured on when Google and T-Mobile team up to put the device and the software on display. And if all goes well here, which all indications point to it doing rather well, Android will be appearing on many a handset in the near future. But when it comes to breaking the ice, they're going to have to make a big impression, especially if Android is to pull consumers from their current carriers and current devices to an HTC handset on T-Mobile. [via Techland]

Android is fast and fully baked, claims PacketVideo VP

Android is fast enough to beat the iPhone 3G in a speed test, and is "the first true multitasking operating system on a phone."  That's according to Joel Espelien, vice president of strategy at PacketVideo, who has been filling in some of the boasts that, up until now, Google has left unspoken in the run up to the first Android handset hitting shelves.  Espelien described the platform as a workhorse, with speed coming primarily from Android's fresh approach to the mobile market:
"Supporting legacy stuff slows you down ... Google could target fast hardware from day one" Joel Espelien, vice president of strategy, PacketVideo
Despite suggestions that the Android OS has been rushed to market, Espelien describes Google as one of the toughest customers PacketVideo has ever worked with.  "They were incredibly demanding and would not cut corners," he described, "Android is fully baked, with no tricks."  It's that polish that the outspoken VP believes will draw in developers, keen to take advantage of the flexibility and integration on offer from Google versus the more at-arms-length approach Apple have taken with the iPhone.
"Android developers can really build apps that feel like part of the phone, not just something glossed on top ... The developer community will act as a powerful gravitational force" Joel Espelien
Espelien also suggested that Motorola would be a significant Android supporter, in their quest to find a follow-up to the RAZR that captures market attention.  He particularly tips Sanjay Jha, Motorola's new co-CEO, as being integral to that plan; Jha was previously COO at Qualcomm, who supply Motorola with chips and are also a member of the Android Open Handset Alliance.

T-Mobile Android launch confirmed Sept 23rd: We’ll be Live Blogging

Android Community has just been invited to an event that will see the launch of the first Android powered T-Mobile smartphone.  The press conference will be on September 23rd at 10:30AM EDT and we'll be Live Blogging the whole event, together with bringing you hands-on photos of the new Android device from a live product demonstration.

The cellphone we expect to see officially unveiled is HTC's Dream, which is believed to be branded the T-Mobile G1.  The September 23rd event ties in with the previously leaked suggestion that the carrier would be announcing their Android handset on this date, with availability by the end of October. Both T-Mobile and Google executives will be presenting the G1, and we'll have all the details as they happen.  The Live Blog address is http://Live.AndroidCommunity.com/ so join us on September 23rd!
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