On Sept. 23 2008, media and bloggers flocked to New York City to see T-Mobile, HTC and Google unveil the G1, the first U.S.-targeted smartphone based on Google’s Android open-source mobile operating system.
For media and bloggers, the event was a cornucopia of video, slideshows and specification spouting punctuated by Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin, who arrived on rollerblades to the delight of the audience.
Fast forward to July 2009. Tomorrow, T-Mobile and Google are hosting another smartphone launch, this time for the new myTouch 3G, also based on Android. Accounts from those who have played with the device indicate it could be head and shoulders above the G1; it’s smaller, sleeker and has no slide-out keyboard to claim the clunkiness title.
The device will cost $199 with a two-year agreement, with general availability set for early August. Current T-Mobile customers will be able to preorder the handheld beginning July 8.
A lot has happened from the G1 to this myTouch. T-Mobile has sold more than 1.5 million G1s, not bad for a first-generation run at all, but not earth-shattering compared with the launch of Apple’s first iPhone in July 2007. Google opened up the Android Market and rolled out Version 1.5 of the Android platform.
There have also been myriad reports that Dell, Nokia, Motorola and several other firms are building Android-based phones, but so far nothing concrete has materialized and the jury is still very much out as to whether Android will serve as a viable alternative to Windows Mobile, Symbian, iPhone, RIM and Palm.
Android success can’t come fast enough for Google, which still faces a lot of skepticism over whether or not a search engine powerhouse can build a smart smartphone OS. Google has said it expects some 20 phones to hit the market in 2009.
T-Mobile and Google will kick things off at 11 a.m. local time at Skyline Studios in New York. But how will T-Mobile and Google outdo the last glitzy launch?
Will Larry and Sergey parachute in this time? Will there be some other special guests to endorse the myTouch? Perhaps a celebrity? What do you think?