Bellevue, Wash. –T-Mobile has taken its 3G-equipped G1 Android-based phone to consumers nationwide.
When it launched the G1 in October 2008, the phone was available in T-Mobile-owned stores and select third-party retail outlets only in the 95 cities where the carrier operated its 3G network. The phone, the industry’s first based on Google’s open-platform Android operating system, was also available online from T-Mobile.
Since then, distribution was expanded to additional 3G markets, but now, T-Mobile said it will make the G1 available in all of its markets in all stores operated by T-Mobile Retail and by all “eligible retail partner locations” in those markets.
At the end of 2008, T-Mobile’s 3G network was available to more than 100 million people in more 130 U.S. cities in 28 major markets. It delivers data downloads at speeds up to 1Mbps.
With the launch of the $179 HTC-made smartphone, Google and allied companies in the Open Handset Alliance made the Android source code available at no charge to applications developers and phone makers to spur widespread adoption of the Linux-based platform, reduce the time needed to bring handsets to market, and accelerate the development of third-party applications that will be available for over-the-air download from Google’s online app store.
The phone is equipped with a Web-browsing touchscreen, horizontal slide-out QWERTY keyboard, Wi-Fi, GPS-enabled Google applications as Google Maps and Street View. It also offers Google’s Gmail, Google Talk instant messaging and YouTube services. The device is also loaded with other IM clients, an HTML email client that syncs email from most POP3 or IMAP mail services, apps to open and read Microsoft Word and PDF documents, and Amazon’s MP3 store, enabling Wi-Fi downloads of unprotected MP3 music files direct to the device.