Today Google announced on its Google Mobile Blog that it has sent out new Android powered phones to many employees around the globe for testing, part of the process it refers to as “dogfooding”, which means using your own products.
It makes no mention whatsoever about this device being the “Google Phone” that has been all the rage on the rumor mills (for the umpteenth time). And it even goes so far as to say that the phone comes “from a partner.” It seems that this hardware is probably HTC’s Passion, from the spy shots that have been floating around.
This isn’t the Google Phone, and I still pretty much doubt there ever will be one. This is merely a phone running Google’s Android OS, so that Google employees can test new OS versions (2.1 in this case), features, and applications on some spiffy, cutting edge hardware. It might have “with Google” branding on it, but so do a lot of “Google Experience” devices already on the market – including the G1.
And if we all remember, the G1 was passed around to Google employees in much the same manner (as the HTC Dream) before it ever went on sale. A smaller scale test run, for sure, but a pretty similar situation.
Time for everybody to calm down a bit, I think.
Update: Or not. The Wall Street Journal is reporting that the phone is called the Nexus One and that it will be sold by Google direct to consumers, unlocked. Twitter rumors mean little to me. The WSJ, however, rarely gets things like this wrong. This just went from vapor to nearly set in concrete in a moment.