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.

Android gets Visa Mobile Payment-Related Services

Visa has announced plans to make a mobile payment-related application primarily for use on Android. The service is targeted to be broadly available to the United States by the end of the year, initially available to Chase Visa cardholders. The first set of services for Chase Visa card holders will be to receive notifications on their phone about any account activity they have; get offers from a wide array of merchants; and use GPS to quickly map nearby merchants where they can redeem Visa offers and locate ATMs that accept Visa. Visa is working to eventually bring the payment-related services to all Visa card holders. Visa also plans to eventually create a way for people holding Visa accounts to make mobile payments in retail locations nationwide, or while on the go, over wireless networks.
"By developing these mobile services for the Android platform, Visa has taken a major step toward achieving our goal of combining two of the world's most powerful and ubiquitous consumer innovations, electronic payments and mobile technology," said Elizabeth Buse, Global Head of Product at Visa Inc. "Through this effort, U.S. consumers will, for the first time, be able to download Visa mobile service applications directly to their handsets. Visa cardholders have come to expect more from their Visa account than just convenience and security of payment, and wireless customers expect their mobile devices to carry a multitude of applications. Extending Visa payments and services to the mobile device is a natural extension, and makes the consumer payment experience more convenient, more secure and more rewarding."
Customers who sign up to a new card would have the option to choose weather they would like to participate in this service or not. Visa plans to work on three key service points to make the customers life easier: Alerts, Offers and Locator. Alerts will give you real time notifications of any account transactions that go through. You can set parameters, such as the size of the transaction, or whether the transaction is in foreign currency. Offers will range from discounts to loyalty offers that could be based on prior purchases. Location is pretty self explanatory, helping you find ATMs that accept Visa.
"We're pleased to extend the value of Visa to the mobile channel," said Buse. "With more than 3 billion mobile devices already in market today, we have an opportunity deliver the convenience and security of Visa to consumers around the globe."
[Via Corperate.Visa.com]

T-Mobile G1 ‘Getting Started’ guide released early

The Getting Started manual [pdf link] for T-Mobile's G1 has been discovered on the carrier's support site, presumably waiting for its official unveiling once the Android handset itself goes on sale.  While there are no obvious surprises in terms of functionality, it does give more of an idea of how the Android user interface is structured, and what apps will be installed out of the box. There's a particularly tongue-in-cheek section on page 33, entitled "Caring for your phone", which among other things advises you to protect the G1 from "tears of joy" as water will damage it.  It also reminds owners that "phones aren't cheap", which may be a painful reminder to anyone who didn't qualify for the $179 price. Hopefully this will keep anyone who pre-ordered the handset content until theirs is delivered on October 22nd. Remember, Android Community has video demos of the main G1 functionality here, here and here. [Thanks tjferris and Pete!] [gallery]

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]

T-Mobile 1GB data cap canned: T&Cs ‘still being reviewed’

After some unfavorable press and caution from would-be buyers over the threatened 1GB data cap, T-Mobile have backtracked on their throttling policy.  In a statement just issued by the carrier, they describe their intention as to "provide the best network experience for all our customers"; however they also remove the 1GB soft-cap, pending further review of the data plan terms & conditions.
"Our goal, when the T-Mobile G1 becomes available in October, is to provide affordable, high-speed data service allowing customers to experience the full data capabilities of the device and our 3G network. At the same time, we have a responsibility to provide the best network experience for all of our customers so we reserve the right to temporarily reduce data throughput for a small fraction of our customers who have excessive or disproportionate usage that interferes with our network performance or our ability to provide quality service to all of our customers. We removed the 1GB soft limit from our policy statement, and we are confident that T-Mobile G1 customers will enjoy the high speed of data access over our 3G network. The specific terms for our new data plans are still being reviewed and once they are final we will be certain to share this broadly with current customers and potential new customers" T-Mobile statement
Instead, it appears T-Mobile will move to throttle back only those customers deemed to be abusing their data connection.  The previously mentioned threat was a reduction to 50 kbps or less. Of course, an unknown data limit can be just as frustrating as a known, low limit, as it gives no way to gauge how close your usage is to what the carrier would deem "excessive or disproportionate".  Hopefully T-Mobile's "specific terms" will be finalized sooner rather than later, so that buyers can decide if the $25 "unlimited" data plan is really worth it.

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.

T-Mobile G1 Video Demos: Walkthrough & Android Market

After the main announcement, Android Community went to check out the T-Mobile G1 itself; you've seen the photo gallery, now it's time for the video demos.  The first is a tour of the G1 with Android project manager Erick Tseng, covering everything from the innovative unlock system, through the menu structure, the browser and the QWERTY keyboard.

In the hand, the G1 feels sturdy and well-made.  It's plastic, not metal, but HTC have obviously spent some money on decent materials; the slider-hinge is reassuring and the slightly-arched path the screen takes is a neat visual.  There are certainly plenty of ways to control the G1 - touchscreen, keyboard, trackball - but while it can be distracting initially, it seems likely that with time you'd develop your own familiar way of using the handset.  The capacitive touchscreen doesn't support iPhone-style multitouch, but is responsive and smoother in use than HTC's resistive touchscreens for Windows Mobile devices. The second video details the Android Market.  One of the key points from this morning's G1 launch was that T-Mobile, HTC and Google are encouraging developers to code for the Android platform.  Indeed, if users want certain functionality - Exchange support, for instance - they'll have to hope that developers work on it; out of the box, the G1 doesn't support it.  That makes the Android Market all the more important; it's something owners will likely be making heavy use of. When we tried the Android Market, it worked just as you'd expect.  Browsing was simple, as you'll see in the video below, and the app downloaded instantly over 3G (or WiFi, if available) and was offered in the main app menu straight after. T-Mobile G1 Demo: [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=POI1n0v-GDA[/youtube] Android Market: [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tD8eoMp-dnM[/youtube]

First T-Mobile G1 Promo Video Surfaces

Smarterer. Connecteder. Funnerer. That's what the new T-Mobile G1 advertising video promises to deliver to users. And really, the ad is quite convincing. When it comes to a slick marketing campaign, T-Mobile is definitely delivering this time around.

"The most exciting phone in the history of phones," begins the ad. And I suppose it is when you take into consideration the months and months of anticipation and the sheer span of interest. That's because the G1 was not to be just another phone running on a familiar operating system. Rather, it would be powered by Android, Google's mobile software. The overall message here seems to be that this phone can do everything you need it to and then some. It's for the business-minded, the busy parent and the teen that wants to rock out. Notably absent from the ad, however, is the name we've all come to know and love, "Android." Instead, the ad ends with the name of the product, the T-Mobile G1 with Google. Watch the ad below. [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0ZHgZr3SXCA[/youtube]
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