T-Mobile G1 / Android bits you may not have caught
Just a few bits on today’s monumental T-Mobile G1 / Android / HTC Googlephone / funnererest handset evar announcement that may have gone under the radar.
- T-Mobile claims G1s will be SIM-locked (no surprise). But hey, the software platform is completely open source; I can’t wait to see how they think they’ll protect against that.
- T-Mobile claims you can’t use the device as a tethered data modem. But again, the whole OS — networking stack, app layer, radio interfaces, etc. — is open. Try and stop us.
- Since T-Mobile’s US 3G network is 1700MHz-based, and the device only supports 1700 and 2100MHz bands, that means there could be it’s unlikely that future G1 versions would support 1900MHz (which is what AT&T’s 3G network requires). So we can probably count out an unlocked import unit for the time being.
- HTC claims better 3G talk time compared to the iPhone 3G: 350 minutes 3G talk time (vs. 300 minutes). 2G talk time is apparently much worse though, 406 minutes to the iPhone’s supposed 600.
- It supports microSDHC — meaning you’re not capped at 4GB of storage. When 16 and 32GB cards show up, you can drop those in and keep growing your device, whereas your iPhone will stay static.
- They didn’t include a 3.5mm headphone jack — they’re using HTC’s combo USB / audio jack (ExtUSB), which requires an adapter. Bunk.
- Sync is done all over the air, and through Google services. It’s still unclear how many of these services you can elect not to use (i.e. can one have a contact list that ISN’T synced to their Gmail account?).
- We knew that the device has a capacitive touchscreen (like the iPhone), but not how they solved the problem of copy/paste, which has plagued Apple. Turns out they half-assed it, or so I understand. Seems that you can only copy/paste data in fields. If you’re on a web page, for example, you can’t select a string of text in a paragraph. The search continues for someone to commit to chasing down the fat-finger-touchscreen copy/paste unicorn.
- Although its browser runs on Webkit and some of the Chrome code base, they’re not officially dubbing it Chrome, or Chrome Mobile, or anything like that. Head Android Andy Rubin said it’s fair to think of it as “Chrome light,” though — just don’t call it that. Yet.