The Google Phone: Right for Web Workers?

Now that the Google phone, running the open source Android operating system, has made its debut, is it relevant to web workers? The GigaOm Network has done several good posts from several angles today, where web workers can get some answers. My own take is that this first phone won’t have major appeal for web workers, but this and other Android-based phones could definitely be strong contenders in the near future.

One thing for web workers to note about the T-Mobile G1 is that it ties in heavily with Google applications and services. That’s partly to Google’s own benefit, but it’s still true that many web workers make heavy use of Google’s offerings.

As Liz noted in here informative live blogging post from the announcement of the G1. the phone makes use of Google services such as Google Maps, StreetView and Gmail. It gets creative with this, too. For example, you can view a StreetView glimpse of where you are as you walk down the street, and the view will update as you move along. Likewise, you can jump straight from contacts on your phone to Google Map views of their locations.

As the first Android-based phone, and Google’s first attempt at a phone, though, there are some things for interested web workers to look out for. First, T-Mobile only offers 3G service in 21 cities in the U.S. James also has a good post up on four things to know about T-Mobile’s 3G.

The mobile experts over at JKOnTheRun have some good thoughts on whether to buy a G1 as well. They like the design and interface.

We’ve also been covering this new phone over on OStatic, and you can find some reaction from the open source community and some predictions here. I think that this first Android phone needs a few things to come together for it to be a real success. In particular, application developers for Android will need to deliver applications just as strong, if not stronger, than the ones appearing for the iPhone. (There is an online app store, similar to Apple’s.)

Many of the applications for the iPhone are consumer-focused, not business-focused. For web workers, good business applications and more tie-ins with Google’s business-centric apps and services could make a difference.


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