You'll learn many things from the New York Times profile of Andy Rubin, the Google employee in charge of its secretive wireless project. That he has a retinal scanner on his front door, for example. Or that he almost struck a deal with telecom pioneer Craig McCaw before Google bought his latest startup, Android. What you won't learn? That Rubin actually has a Googlephone coming to the market. That, of course, is because there is no Googlephone
Sad, really. Even gadget-obsessed blogs like Gizmodo have made their peace with the idea that Google's project has gone from full-on hardware to a mere operating system. And I bet Times tech scribe John Markoff gets that Rubin's ambitions have been scaled back. But if he sent his editors a memo, they appear to have ignored it, working Googlephone mentions into the headline, text of the article, and sidebar. They apparently haven't actually read the article. Here's a key paragraph:
"Instead of making money on software, you have someone who is saying they're trying to make their money on services," said Michael Kleeman, a technology strategist at the California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology at the University of California at San Diego. "The interesting question is whether the carriers will authorize the Google handsets on their networks."
Markoff's article, of course, doesn't actually answer that question. So is there a Googlephone? According to this story, despite the promises of its headline: No.
(Photo by Jim Wilson/The New York Times)