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Summary:

Aussie electronics maker Kogan got a few folks excited late last year by announcing the Kogan Agora, the Android equipped smartphone that would be shipping near year’s end.  The company has been taking orders for a while and MobileTechRoundup co-host Matt Miller was excited enough by […]

Aussie electronics maker Kogan got a few folks excited late last year by announcing the Kogan Agora, the Android equipped smartphone that would be shipping near year’s end.  The company has been taking orders for a while and MobileTechRoundup co-host Matt Miller was excited enough by the Agora that he pulled his plastic out for an order.

agora

Kogan head honcho today has announced that the Android phone would be delayed “indefinitely”, a nice way to say canceled.  He has cited the need “to ensure its compatibility with all future Android applications”.  It sounds like a meeting late last year with Google must have shed light on shortcomings with the Agora as far as future versions of Android are concerned.

This situation could spell trouble for other OEMs currently working on Android phones.  We recently asked where all the Android phone announcements were at CES 2009 and this might have something to do with it.  Is there the possibility that Android is such a moving target that lots of design work can be thrown out the window?  In any event this is not good no matter the real reason behind Kogan’s cancellation.

(The Age)

  1. This is what happens when the complex OS which controls the device is made by a company de-coupled from the hardware manufacturer, with an intermediary [Kogan in this case] trying to cobble it all together.

    Microsoft had these kinds of problems. If you watch some Windows mobile videos on MSDN’s Channel 9 you’ll see how hard they try to make sure this sort of thing never happens. It is hard.

    Too bad for Kogan. This is not their forte. They are out of their depth. I too almost bought the device but when I saw that initial device specs were not available [initially], and that feedback comments indicated that the images being shown were Blackberry partial renders I got very suspicious. With no product, nothing, Kogan had started taking orders and billing for it? That put me off.

    Lastly, Android itself is Release Candidate quality, really. To build a device [being your first mobile device in Kogan's case] on this, with the hardware itself outsourced [Kogan has no in-house expertise here too] is very risky. Hopefully they will learn very quickly and avoid this mistake in the future.

    Lanre

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  2. Since the G1 has been such an underwhelming success it seems reasonable to me to suspect that Google is busy tinkering with the OS to try and make the follow on devices more appealing to consumers instead of nerds.

    It also hasn’t helped that iPhone developers have been making hard coin since day 1 of the App Store and Android developers are still having to give it all away months later. Some may snipe at today’s 500 million download figure and ask “How many were free?” but you don’t get 15,000 apps written in six months if no one was making $$$. Android desperately wishes it had had that level of uptake by the development community.

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  3. I love the hardware of the device.
    I really wish that the phone industry would turn more into the computer industry.
    But the hardware device and then install Android, WinMo or OS X (whatver tickles your fancy).

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