T-Mobile and Google executives unveiled the highly anticipated "Google-powered" phone and revealed that the HTC-manufactured G1 would go on sale Oct. 22 for $179 — $20 less than the Apple favorite.
The G1 is the first phone powered by Android — Google’s open source mobile phone software platform that gives innovative third-party developers the opportunity to create new applications.
The G1 is 5.6 ounces and is 4.6 inches tall, 2.16 inches wide and 0.62 inches thick. It has a hinged touch screen that opens to a QWERTY keyboard and a trackball for one-handed navigation. In the United States, it will come in three colors: black, brown and white. It has up to 130 hours of standby time and up to five hours of talk time.
The G1 provides one-touch access to Gmail and syncs e-mail easily from most other mail services. Photos and graphics are displayed along with the text. The phone can also read Word documents and pdfs.
The device also offers easy access to instant messaging services, including Google Talk, AOL, Windows Live Messager and Yahoo! Messenger. From their contacts application, users can see which friends are online at their computers or other mobile devices.
To make multitasking easier, the G1 also offers a "window shade" that lets users pull down active applications without closing others down.
In what Google and T-Mobile say is an industry first, the phone’s Google Maps feature syncs with a built-in compass to allow customers to use the Street View program to view locations and navigate 360 degrees by moving the phone with their hands.
The G1 also includes a 3-megapixel camera and has a variety of photo-sharing capabilities.
The phone also comes pre-loaded with an Amazon.com application that allows customers to search for and download (for a price) Amazon MP3 tracks. But users can also easily connect the phone to a computer and drag music files into it as they would with an external hard drive.
A 1 GB memory card that can hold up to 500 songs comes with the phone, but the device can support up to an 8 GB memory card.
T-Mobile and Google executives unveiled the highly anticipated "Google-powered" phone and revealed that the HTC-manufactured G1 would go on sale Oct. 22 for $179