Rumors about a Dell Android Phone have been swirling since almost the inception of Android. Let’s look back on how the Dell Droid story has played out before we dive into the most recent plot twist of the saga:
- Feb 2008: Dell is rumored to be creating the gPhone
- Feb 2008: Alienware Phone Imagined (owned by Dell)
- July 2008: CEO Michael Dell says they’re working on Android Phone
- Jan 2009: Dell MePhone Coming Soon
That last rumor even cited the phone could have come as early as the following month, which to folks like us living in the future, is last month. As we know, there was no Dell Android Phone launched last month althought their COULD have been: Dell presented it to the carriers and it was rejected by everyone who got a look.
Ouch. That hurts. But Kaufman Bros. analyst Shaw Wu in a research note adds insult to injury saying the reason for the worldwide rejection was the phone’s were too… “Dell-like”. Dell Dude is gonna feel THAT in the morning.
Carriers reportedly knocked the 2 prototypes, which were the same phone with one running Windows Mobile and one running Android, saying they lacked differentiation. But Dell isn’t giving up:
That said, Wu writes that his sources believe Dell has not given up, and that “Dell remains committed to the cell phone space as it appreciates the opportunity in smart phones and the longer-term cannibalization potential of PCs.” He adds that “at the end of the day…PC vendors may have an advantage over traditional cell phone competitors as a smart phone is more PC than cell phone with all the computer functionality and voice as a commodity.” Wu notes that PC makers Acer, Asustek and Lenovo are all beefing up their smart phone offerings.
So now Dell heads back to the drawing board. But you have to wonder if they really “get it”. You can say that computer manufacturers have a huge advantage but I just don’t think that’s accurate. Mobile phones are an entirely different beast and if Dell got it so wrong on the first go round, why are they any more likely to get it right the second time when even more competitors have inevitably launched new phones?
Don’t get me wrong, I’d love to see Dell succeed in the Mobile market and with Android in particular… but you have to wonder if they’re creative and capable enough without the help of company that has already seen success in mobile. Thankfully, the article says they’re contemplating acquisitions to help in this effort. Do whatever it takes to bring us something innovative, dude!