Ever since Google bought Android Inc. back in 2005, there have been unrelenting rumors that Google was planning to release its own handset into the market. In 2007, Google announced it had been working on an open source mobile operating system named Android. Since their release of the OS, many have been skeptical that Google would release their own hardware device for fear of alienating other hardware distributors that have signed on to adopt Google’s Android. So how has the nearly confirmed Google Phone come to be?
On November 17th, TechCrunch posted that their sources had confirmed that Google was slated to release their own handset powered by Android. Google was said to be overlooking the hardware development that would be produced by a major manufacturer. One day later, TechCrunch was speculating the device to be data only and voice calls being driven by VoIP. Although this was only backed by one source, the device could be the driving force of Google Voice.
In a meeting on December 10th, the device was handed out to some Google employees who later posted tweets about the handset. Google confirmed on their mobile blog that they were indeed experimenting with new products through their employees. Reports started flowing in that HTC would be the manufacturer and images of the Nexus One began to surface. The device is rumored to be the HTC Passion with a 1 GHz Snapdragon processor and 5 megapixel camera. It’s running an unreleased version of Android, pictured to be version 2.1 and not a complete overhaul of the Android OS. The Nexus One appeared in FCC filings sporting European GSM bands and T-Mobile 3G radio.
Whether the device will be released under the Nexus One name or something different, the device is rumored to be sold by Google itself come January and, most recently, T-Mobile would back the device despite it being sold unlocked. Expect to hear a lot more about the Nexus One in the coming weeks. I’d hold off on any phone purchases until more news breaks. The device is in the wild, so it’s only a matter of time until we’ve got more info.