What Will Be The Next Android Phone?


How impatient us tech fans are… before the T-Mobile/HTC Dream/G1 is even announced, we’re all wondering what the NEXT android phone will be. In this case though, its warranted. Android transcends carriers, manufacturers and geography – thats half of the concept. So what WILL be the next Android phone?

Elizabeth Woyke of Forbes.com wrote a fabulous article titled, “What Android Will Bring” that discusses the launch of Android and what it means for the mobile industry. In that article she spoke with the VP of Strategy at PacketVideo – Joel Espelien – whose company supplied Android’s media software. Check out this excerpt from the article:

Google’s consortium of Android partners, the Open Handset Alliance, has stayed stable at 34 companies for months, but Espelien expects it to grow. He says four of the five largest handset makers will make Android phones–a hint that Sony Ericsson has signed on or soon will. Three of the five–LG, Motorola and Samsung–are already OHA members. Nokia, the world’s largest phone manufacturer, which announced in June that it would purchase Symbian, probably won’t join the Android movement, concedes Espelien.

But what about HTC, the company making the first ever Android enabled phone? They aren’t one of the top 5… Nokia, Samsung, Motorola, LG and Sony Ericsson claim membership to that elite club. The way HTC is making headlines and phones these days it SEEMS like they should be Top 5 but their recent success is just that- recent.

So was it a simple Top 5 ordering mistake by Epselien or a golden nugget to foreshadow what’s to come? Onto the next dot.

Supposing Sony Ericsson IS about to join the OHA, when would an Android Phone pop up? Probably not for awhile as SE hasn’t been the best at keeping their lid on rumors and we haven’t heard much of anything. But perhaps an interview with Magnus Andersson, Sony Ercisson Xperia X1 product/development manager, would provide some more insight.

Here is an excerpt from the ZDNet article by David Meyer:

“With anything we do from Sony Ericsson, the platform or technology itself doesn’t make it a brand,” Andersson told ZDNet.co.uk. “The Xperia brand is our new premium brand [where we] want to give something extra. That doesn’t say it’s typically a Windows Mobile [phone] — it’s not equivalent to ‘Windows Mobile from Sony Ericsson’.”

This doesn’t say a WHOLE lot because the Xperia seems to be a product line and not a single device. Andersson wouldn’t want to anchor himself to WinMo if they decided to go another direction in coming years but he also wouldn’t want to give away details should the Xperia be coming to Android soon.

So can we make anything of this? Probably not. He said himself, “As with anything from Sony Ericsson” so this was a blanket stated reaffirming that Sony Ericsson is the brand being sold, not Windows Mobile. But pondering the Xperia with Android is a pretty interesting task.

Oh yeah, we forgot to mention that the Sony Ericsson Xperia X1 is actually being manufactured by HTC… isn’t it? Yup, that’s the same company making the first Android Phone. The Xperia was announced way back in February but delay after delay has pushed it back to an October release.

The Xperia X1 already has a marketing campaign of its own launched, so no, we’re not likely to see anything besides the Dream/G1 launched on the 23rd. We probably won’t see anything for a couple months, to be honest. But with Sony Ericsson already working with HTC and their recent decision to move away from Symbian and try out a new OS, an Android enabled SE phone doesn’t seem too far fetched.

Keep in mind that everyone is still wondering what HTC is doing. Sure, the Dream/G1 is fine and dandy in the looks department but it doesn’t quite match up to the likes of the Touch HD, Touch 3G or Touch Diamond that we’re seeing. Is there a reason HTC couldn’t slap Android on one of these devices?

Its an interesting to note that the HTC Dream has been rumored for a long, long time. Its the hardware that Andy Rubin has been using to demo Android at event after event and interview after interview. Is it not surprising that no other devices have gotten even an inkling of rumor attached? We kind of through the Xperia under the bus in this article but reallly, whats next?

Your guess is as good as ours, so lets hear it… What Will Be The Next Android Phone?

Rob Jackson
I'm an Android and Tech lover, but first and foremost I consider myself a creative thinker and entrepreneurial spirit with a passion for ideas of all sizes. I'm a sports lover who cheers for the Orange (College), Ravens (NFL), (Orioles), and Yankees (long story). I live in Baltimore and wear it on my sleeve, with an Under Armour logo. I also love traveling... where do you want to go?

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1 Comment

  1. Of course, I have no idea what the next phone would be, but I hope it is something along the lines of the HTC Touch HD if not that phone itself (which many posters have speculated is impossible due to license arrangements with Microsoft – I have no idea). I’ll try out the G1 in person to be sure, but I’m much more in the market for a phone like the Touch HD which has:

    A much nicer screen: I really think the 800×480 is the screen of choice. 3.8″ is a little small still, I’d prefer the 4.3″ that shows up on the HP iPaq 310 GPS, which could still fit in a reasonable form factor (increasing the Touch HD’s size of 115×63mm to 124×67mm). The G1’s screen (3.2″ 480×320 is the same resolution as the iPhone and but smaller which is worse for anybody who doesn’t want to focus closer than 8 or 10″).

    A nicer camera: A lot of people complain about the quality of the iPhone’s camera (and that it won’t do video out of the box). Perhaps the G1’s camera will be better, but speculation I’ve read is that it isn’t getting the design attention that the camera on the Touch HD got.

    A nicer (for me) package: I used to like the idea of slide out keyboard, but the more I think about it, and the more models I play with, I’m convinced it is too bulky to be my first choice. You can never make a phone as thin with the same features and battery life if you have to design two separate pieces. Sure, the iPhone’s portrait keyboard is lousy (for my hands anyway), but imagine a 94 mm wide (4.3″ diag) on screen keyboard and how fast with few errors you can type. It’s true, you don’t get to view as much of the screen when typing, but I’ll take that over a bigger bulge in my pocket. Also, I hate the extra bulk the G1 has below the screen. And a tilt to it? How is that going to fit in my pocket comfortably in any orientation? Style is less of a concern to me, but the G1 is one ugly phone compared to the Touch HD.

    Dara Parsavand

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