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Summary:

Well the excitement has died down and the press event ran its course and now it’s time to reflect on what I saw and think about the implications of the G1.  It’s finally official that T-Mobile and Google, or G-Mobile, have married and produced the offspring […]

G1Well the excitement has died down and the press event ran its course and now it’s time to reflect on what I saw and think about the implications of the G1.  It’s finally official that T-Mobile and Google, or G-Mobile, have married and produced the offspring they have been teasing us about for so long.

The G1 phone itself is exactly what rumors have leaked.  It’s not the thinnest nor narrowest and probably not the lightest phone out there but it shows definite HTC quality from what I could see.  I watched a few videos of analysts playing with the G1 after the event and the QWERTY keyboard looks well designed.  I was happy to see the slider have a definite "click" when it opens and closes, a sign that it is well constructed.  The phone is pretty simple by design and I think that’s a good call as a bevy of buttons would have confused some folks.  The usability will be defined by the UI, not the buttons.  I am glad to see they used a trackball on the front like the Blackberries which are much better than D-pad navigation controls.

The UI was shown too briefly to form an opinion about it which isthe case usually.  You have to play with touch phones to see how theywork but it does look like the touch UI is thoughtfully designed. Ifound the touch and zoom gesture in the browser to be particularlyuseful.  The demos at the press event were carefully set up I’m surebut in the after event it appears that the G1 is very snappy.  I know Ican’t wait to get my hands on one.

The only surprises for me at the press event were T-Mobile related.I expected them to have special data pricing for the G1 and the $25/$35plans are reasonable.  They did confirm you need a voice plan inaddition to the data plan which is not surprising to me.  The $179phone price was less than rumors pegged it and that’s a good thing andquite reasonable.  They’ll end up getting lots of new 2-year contractsas a result when existing customers buy them.  The biggest surprise forme was the admission that you cannot tether the G1 to a laptop forconnectivity.  The T-Mobile rep was not clear if that was a hardware/network limitation or a plan restriction but he was clear that the G1is a mobile device, not a modem.  That won’t take long to break beingopen source.

I was not surprised to hear the G1 will not support Exchange Serverfrom the beginning.  T-Mobile made it clear that they would leave thatto third party developers.  Whoever does that will have to licenseActiveSync from Microsoft I suspect which is part of the reason whyG-Mobile passed on it.  GMail will have push email though and IMAP willbe pull.  Interestingly along these lines there will be no desktopsyncing application so data will only be in sync with the Googlecloud.  They obviously are taking pains to make sure the G1 is astand-alone internet device and not dependent on the desktop in anyway.  The cloud syncing probably means that contacts and calendars willbe "push" in that the phone data will likely always be in sync with thecloud data.

Overall I’m impressed enough with everything I heard and saw aboutthe G1 that I will buy one.  Unfortunately even though the T-Mobilesite says you can order one I can’t find it to actually let me do thatyet.

  1. I am seriously thinking of getting this phone. I enjoy tmobile with their fav 5 plans. And adding low cost internet would be a joy. But from previous experience I woulnd’t use the internet much.

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  2. I put in my pre-order as soon as my.t-mobile.com would allow me too. I hope to receive the phone on or before Oct. 22, which is the “estimated” delivery date. I’m really looking forward to using this phone though. I was/am/will be a little weary about the sidekick-like design of the phone, but I always welcome full qwerty. I guess my blackberry curve will find a nice home in a box somewhere if this pans out.

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  3. I did order one about 3 hours ago, but I’m an existing customer. When I logged in to the mytmobile page, I was able to get to it immediately.

    It’s supposed to arrive October 22, so we’ll see. I’m pretty google-centric, so it’s a good look for me.

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  4. Once the Sprint version comes out, I am jumping in. My 6800 does the job, but I use Google Apps and this would make it life easier. I hear early 2009 Sprint release date.

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  5. Looks like upgrading your handset is unavailable right now. Must be overwhelmed with orders.

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  6. JK, that’s the same error i’ve been getting for the last few hours. Actually ran down to the T-Mobile store and the guy couldn’t pull up info either. So much for trying to get “work” done on a lunch break.

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  7. There are some issues being brought up about this handset over on Gizmodo (http://gizmodo.com/5053747/android-and-t+mobile-g1s-five-most-obnoxious-flaws).

    No BT stereo, special USB-earbud adapter, and only one Google account can be linked.

    It’s not a bad price, but I’m not where T-Mo has 3G yet, and they had issues providing decent call service to me in the past.

    And this handset doesn’t strike me as being all that shiny. It’s like a typical mid-grade HTC handset, so it’ll work great. But it’s nothing special.

    Woadan

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  8. I don’t really see anything special about this device. My feeling is neither like nor dislike. It gives me simply no interest, which is I think worse than dislike from marketing standpoint.
    Other than the fact that it’s a Google product and it has new OS, what’s so exciting? I may have different opinion when more phones and 3rd party software are out, but right now, iPhone and WM phones appear better choices in many aspects for most of consumers.

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  9. Low priced internet? Where?

    You can get pretty much everything (internet + SMS + nav + TV) on Sprint for $25 or $30. T-Mobile completely missed the boat and is acting too big for its breeches. Its the smallest carrier with a pathetic 3G footprint, but its behaving like VZW or AT&T.

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  10. And if you are current T-Mobile customer, you’re looking at paying $299, not $179. No thanks. I’ll wait.

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