T-Mobile-Dream

Google gives employees “Dream Phones” for holiday bonuses

When one thinks about a holiday bonus they usually think about a large paycheck helping families in need during an expensive time of the year, but what happens when the holiday season comes rolling around and you get a gift rather than cash? Employees over at Google didn’t experience a swell in their paycheck, but rather a “Dream Phone.” How many presents can you buy your family with a T-Mobile G1? Of course these G1s are not just your everyday run of the mill handsets, these have a special “droid” on the back to sweeten the deal. You can probably expect a lot of these “special edition phones” on Ebay in the next few weeks. This must be Google’s way of converting their team. Google did manage to at least make these handsets unlocked so that team members can use any carrier they would like. There are a few countries that Google’s legal team could not “work their magic.” These countries include India, China, Brazil, Korea, Israel, Russia, Argentina, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Mexico, Turkey, Kenya, United Arab Emirates, South Africa, Egypt, Chile, and the Ukraine. The employees in those countries will receive the cash equivalent (about $400) in their December paycheck. Google has even attached a Q&A to the letter for anyone who has any more questions.
The full employee letter: Googlers, The holiday bonus is a Google tradition - it’s a great way to thank everyone for their hard work. In the past, we’ve done this in cash. This year, we’ve decided to give Googlers a different kind of present - a Dream phone (this is the same device T-Mobile (NYSE: DT) markets as the G1). We’re really excited about getting the phone to more Googlers in more countries, and also seeing all the cool new things you do with it. Shipping these special edition phones in such a short time frame (they were designed especially for Googlers with a ‘droid’ on the back) and making sure they would work anywhere in the world was no small feat. So a big thank you to the Android and Legal teams for making this happen. While these phones do not have SIM cards, they are unlocked so they can be used with the network provider of your choice. Plus - thanks to more fancy footwork from the Android team - they’ll work immediately as WiFi devices! Sadly, despite all our best efforts, there are some countries - India, China, Brazil, Korea, Israel, Russia, Argentina, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Mexico, Turkey, Kenya, United Arab Emirates, South Africa, Egypt, Chile, and the Ukraine - where even our legal team could not work their magic. Googlers in these countries will receive the cash equivalent of the phone in their December paychecks, which is about $400 USD. Overall though almost 85% of Googlers globally will be able to receive the phone - including the United States, Western and Central Europe, Canada, Australia, Singapore, and Japan. The holiday gift team in your office will be sending out an email with logistical information on distribution shortly. We know that some of you are already on your holidays - don’t worry - your phones will be waiting for you when you come back! For more information, check out the FAQ here. Some of you will of course be wondering why we decided to change from a cash bonus to the Dream phone. Here are the reasons. First, we’ve never developed anything like the Android software before and this represented a unique opportunity to celebrate that achievement. Googlers globally have been asking for the Dream phone and we’re looking forward to seeing all the different things that you do with them. This is a chance for us to once again dogfood a product and make it even better! Second, as we discussed in our email this week, the current economic crisis requires us to be more conservative about how we spend our money. We felt that giving the Dream phone would be a great holiday present - something we could all celebrate. Thank you for all that you do to make Google the company that it is. We hope that you will enjoy using your Dream phone in 2009 and have a very happy holiday! …and the Q&A that followed: Q: What is the holiday bonus for 2008?
The holiday bonus is a Google tradition. In the past, we have chosen to make this a monetary gift. This year we decided to try something different: on December 19th, we will begin distributing free Dream phones to Googlers worldwide. Q: I already have an Android phone. What happens to my holiday bonus?
These phones are a personal gift. We hope you will put them to good use! Please do not resell them as this is against Google [policy link removed]. Q: Why did we decide to give Dream phones as our holiday bonus this year?
The launch of Android was one of this year’s highlights for the company. When the Android phone was announced, Googler interest was extremely high - we had scores of TGIF questions, misc threads, and just general buzz about how Googlers could get a phone of their own. After seeing the amount of interest in the Android phones from Googlers, we agreed that every Googler should have one. Q: Will all Googlers get phones?
It was a huge task to ensure that the phones would work around the world and we want to thank the Android team and Legal team for making this happen. We’re proud to say that almost 85% of Googlers globally will receive Dream phones, including Googlers in the United States, Europe, Canada, Australia, Singapore, and Japan. Q: I’m not getting a Dream phone because I don’t live in an eligible country. Do I still get a holiday bonus?
Yes, Googlers who live in countries where it was not currently feasible to distribute Dream devices will be getting a cash equivalent gift in your paycheck in December. This includes people in India, China, Brazil, Korea, Israel, Russia, Argentina, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Mexico, Turkey, Kenya, United Arab Emirates, South Africa, Egypt, Chile, and Ukraine. For more information, please see [removed]. Q: I do live in an eligible country. Can I opt for the cash equivalent gift instead?
Only those Googlers in countries where it was not currently feasible to distribute Dream devices will be getting the cash equivalent gift. All other Googlers will receive a Dream phone. Q: Can I resell my phone?
Googlers should not resell any item given to them by Google. Please review our Personal Transactions policy [removed]. Q: Will I be able to take my SIM from my Google managed Corporate Mobile device (BlackBerry (NSDQ: RIMM)) and use it in my new Dream phone?
No, this is against policy and Google could incur significant overage charges. Placing a Blackberry SIM into a Dream device may cause the data plans to be disabled and break data for both the Dream and the Blackberry. Please review [link removed] for more info. Q: Are there tax implications to this?
Google is covering the taxes for this gift; there will be an extra payroll run before the end of the year to cover the taxes. If you have further payroll or HR-related questions about this gift please email [address removed].

T-Mobile USA Update On T-Mobile G1 Pre-Launch Availability

Here's the latest official response from T-Mobile pertaining to the T-Mobile G1 pre-launch availability.  If you didn't pre-order the T-Mobile G1, you are now OFFICIALLY SOL.

Given the great anticipation and the heavy pre-sale demand for the T-Mobile G1 with Google, we nearly tripled the number of phones initially available for delivery on our Oct. 22 launch date, and have sold through them all.  However, to accommodate additional T-Mobile customers who want to pre-order a device, they now have the opportunity to place a pre-order through Oct. 21, for delivery at a later date.

Also, people can still pre-register on the T-Mobile G1 Web site to be notified prior to launch where they can purchase the device beginning Oct. 22.  Details are available on the T-Mobile G1 Web site, www.T-MobileG1.com.

UPDATE: T-Mobile customers who want to pre-order a device, they now have the opportunity to place a pre-order through Oct. 21, for delivery sometime in early November 10th time frame. Thanks Kristen, T-Mobile Spokesperson

T-Mobile G1 Android phone is ready for SanDisk 16GB microSDHC card

Even though Google said that T-Mobile G1 only supports up to an 8GB microSDHC card, with future support for the 16GB version after a firmware upgrade, that's not the case.  We just got confirmation from Google spokesperson that the current version of Android can handle the new SanDisk 16GB card right out of the box.

"We have completed tests, and the new SanDisk 16GB card will run on the current version of Android.  No new firmware required." -Google Spokesperson

SanDisk's 16GB microSDHC card has an MSRP of $99.99 and will be available at Best Buy Mobile stores in October and Verizon Wireless stores in November - the only major retailers in the United States to carry this mobile storage capacity in 2008. [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s_JAehcnKYQ[/youtube]

T-Mobile G1 hands-on: Award-Winning Android App feature ShopSavvy

We had a little bit of time today to get an exclusive one on one time with the G1 for our Android Community members, at a special developers event held in Dallas. The company behind Google Application Challenge award winning app ShopSavvy, Big In Japan - were there, demonstrating the software in action on a G1.

The G1 phone was quick and responsive as when we played with it at the launch event last week. We were able to get hands on time with the full version of ShopSavvy. We scanned a barcode (for demonstration purposes, a Logitech webcam) and were able to compare prices online as well as at many stores in the area. No word on when the application will be released, or if it will be a free application or one in which you must purchase. We can imagine it would be particularly useful for all the Christmas shopping coming up over the next few months.  One particularly useful feature is price alert, allowing you to save products to a wish-list that updates you when the product is discounted into your pre-set price range. Check out the video interview we did with Big In Japan here. [gallery]

Android Community Week in Review – Week 38 2008

It has been a very busy week for Google's Android platform with the announcement of the G1. T-Mobile has started taking pre-orders for the G1 with price starting at $179,with a release date of October 22nd. A lot of people however were not happy to hear the data plan being capped at 1Gig. T-Mobile quickly removed the 1Gig soft cap after getting a lot of negative feedback about the decision.

Android comes full of much loved features such as Youtube, and the Android equivalent to iTunes "Amazon MP3". The clean interface on these applications give them the edge over competitors applications of the same nature. Google's new mobile version of Street View is a feature that all people will find useful. Visa has been at work creating an application that will offer account notifications, merchant offers and ATM locations. It appears that the white G1 was held back from pre-orders, rumor is the white paint used to coat the device was chipping. The white version was even scarcely seen at T-Mobile's G1 announcement. The G1 "Getting Started" guide got out a few weeks early revealing a lot more about the device including the box contents. Also released this week was the long awaited official Android SDK 1.0. Not much new to see in this polished version. Photo of the dressed up Android is courtesy of Android Community's member htc_dreamer. [gallery] [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kngcp0ooDig[/youtube] [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d3omdLHn6YM[/youtube] [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MSCOGxh5LEk[/youtube] [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JZoxIqZtYJ4[/youtube] [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=POI1n0v-GDA[/youtube]

T-Mobile G1 pre-order has come to an end [Updated]

Update: Pre-order is back up.  Thanks A-Tron!  We heard from our friends at T-Mobile today and here's the official statement:

"The T-Mobile G1 microsite experienced a technical glitch this morning, and is now back up and running.  Since Tuesday's announcement, we've experienced heavy demand for the device.  A small quantity of T-Mobile G1s are still available at this time for T-Mobile customers. Please visit http://www.T-MobileG1.com for details." -thanks Kristen!

Note that there are only a small quantity of the T-Mobile G1s are available.  That means if you want a G1, you better hurry because T-Mobile is running out! With the overwhelming response to the announcement of the T-Mobile has run out of available devices for the G1 pre-order. Hundreds of people immediately jumped on T-Mobile's site to pre-order their device. So many in fact that the site was down for several hours.

T-Mobile g1 in white being held back?

With everyone throwing in there pre-orders as quickly as possible it comes as a surprise that supplies are quickly running out. Until now no one has noticed the odd absence of the white model. It seems just about everyone wants the black version of the first Android. This explains the odd lack of the white version at T-Mobile's announcement. In fact only one was spotted.

G1 YouTube, AmazonMP3 and Settings video walkthrough

YouTube is very clean and easy to navigate. The dark interface gives a really nice touch when reading through descriptions of videos and looking through thumbnails to find what you are looking for. Video loading times seemed to be the only drawback of this application - possibly due to the WiFi and 3G networks in the test area being overworked - but were quickly made up for with video resolution and easy controls. There does not seem to be too much to rave about the settings menu other than the clear settings descriptions helping the user know what each setting category is about. The layout includes a symbol to the right of each option that quickly and easily informs the user as to wither a specific settings is on or not. The “about” page includes a lot of detailed information about your device and usage including Battery Status, Battery Level, Signal Strength, Network and Kernel Version to name just a few. Similar to iTunes for the iPhone, Google is offering a vast library of songs for download while on the go thanks to a collaboration with Amazon. Users who currently use Amazon will find the interface familiar; the layout is very simple in comparison to iTunes. Song descriptions include the artist, album cover art, album, song name rating. Amazon even allows a brief preview of each song before you purchase. [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kngcp0ooDig[/youtube] [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MSCOGxh5LEk[/youtube] [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d3omdLHn6YM[/youtube]

Google Street View Hands On Video Demo

The G1 offers a lot of location based services including the ability to see where your friends are. Similar to Buddy Beacon the G1 can help you locate others as well as broadcast your location, however it is not limited to those who are using a specific application. It is the same with all Android phones.

Camera-shy Brown G1 Spotted at last! – More G1 Live Photos

With all the sightings of the G1 at the event today, it has become clear that black is the color favorite. There were a few white models in pictures here and there. Word is the brown one was spotted but we really did not see much of it.  While the showroom was crowded with long lines and tons of media running about we had to get a shot of the brown, so we sent Vince back in to seek one out. He managed to get his hands on it but only for a moment, as well as plenty more hands-on images.

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