Google's Mobile Phone Plans Hit Delays: Report

By Reuters - Print this article Print

It appears that Google's foray in to the mobile space with Androidmmay be encountering more hurdles than initially expected, though much of it may have to do with time frames.

NEW YORK (Reuters) - New mobile phones being developed by Google Inc (GOOG.O: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) and more than 30 partners based on software called Android will arrive in the fourth quarter, a schedule that some cellular carriers and program makers are struggling to meet, The Wall Street Journal reported on Monday.

Google had said in November that the phones would come out by the second half of 2008, the Journal reported.

Deutsche Telekom's (DTEGn.DE: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) T-Mobile USA expects to deliver an Android-powered phone in the fourth period, but Sprint Nextel Corp (S.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) will not be able to, a person familiar with the matter said, according to the Journal.

China Mobile (0941.HK: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), the world's largest wireless carrier with nearly 400 million subscriber accounts, likely will have its launch delayed until late this year or early 2009, the Journal reported, citing sources.

Android also has not won broad support from large mobile-software developers, and some said it is hard to develop programs while Google makes changes as it finishes its own software, the Journal reported.

Managing the software development while giving its partners the opportunity to lobby for new features takes time, the Journal quoted Google's director of mobile platforms, Andy Rubin, as saying. He also told the Journal: "This is where the pain happens... We are very, very close."

Google was not immediately available for comment.

(Reporting by Robert MacMillan in New York and Eric Auchard in San Francisco; Editing by Lincoln Feast)

This article was originally published on 2008-06-23
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