Commercial: An emerging new mobile phone paradigm
Apologies for the use of the word 'paradigm', but it does appear to be the correct one in response to this fairly detailed post on TechCrunch about the underlying model of the putative 'GPhone'. (And for those of you who have only just got your heads around, and hands on, the iPhone, well, the G could well be more important than the i.)
TechCrunch reports that:
By creating a reference design and working with existing phone manufacturers, it appears that Google may be hoping to create an entire new class of smart phones, rather than a single, super Gphone. In this view, each manufacturing partner and cell phone carrier could develop their own set of unique features around the Gphone platform.
While this might mean a lot of experimentation, and probably no single device fully utilising the capabilities of the Google platform, it does mean it's more likely that more GPhones will get out there.
Features of the GPhone platform are likely to include:
—Free (or incredibly inexpensive) ad-supported phones.
—Mobile versions of Google apps like Gmail, Google Maps, Google Reader, Google Calendar, and YouTube, pre-loaded onto the device.
—Integration with GTalk, Google’s IM and VOIP software (this one is controversial because it would potentially bypass the carriers’ more expensive voice minutes, especially if combined with WiFi, but it could also mean more heavy usage of mobile data plans).
—GPay mobile payment software that turns each phone into a wallet.
—A true open-source platform on top of which anyone can develop their own apps.
AdSense is the most important because:
If Google were to tie its mobile application development platform to its existing advertising platform, it could share future mobile advertising revenues with developers the same way it splits ad revenues with Web publishers today.
Which suggests a mobile web boom/bubble (depending on taste) could be imminent too.
If I was writing Facebook applications, I'd start figuring out how to make them mobile as well.