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Rumors of ’Google Phone’ launch

Specialised blogs are abuzz this week with rumors that Internet giant Google will soon launch the "Google Phone" or "GPhone," a cheap mobile phone equipped with Google’s operating system. High-tech product specialist Engadget said a Google announcement would come next week, adding that a Google operating system would be tailor-made for the new cell phone.

According to another blog, CrunchGear, "Google is currently assessing over twenty (of Taiwan’s) HTC models" and plans to launch its cell phone between January and March of 2008. Photographs of Google’s touch-screen handset are already on the Internet, and according to, it will cost a mere 100 dollars.

CrunchGear said the HTC/Google phone would have Google Talk enabled, allowing users to make free Internet phone calls. The blog said the Google phone will not only be able to surf the net but also will include "special version of Google Maps, compatible with built-in GPS, and compatibility with Gmail, Google’s email service."

According to The Wall Street Journal, Google has already shown its prototype to US companies AT & T, T-Mobile and Verizon Wireless, making it seem clear the Google Phone’s launch will definitely take place in the United States.

Indian blog Rediff said the GPhone will be launched in two weeks simultaneously in the United States and Europe, adding that Google was talking with Indian telephone operators Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Essar, and that Bharat Sanchar Nigam could be one of the manufacturers.

Google has refused to make any comment on the rumours.

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