The wait is almost over: This morning in New York, Google (GOOG) and T-Mobile will unveil the first Google Android-powered ‘GPhone’, which should probably go on sale in a few weeks for around $200. We’ll be live blogging the event starting around 10:30 a.m. ET.
We already know what Google’s first Android-powered smartphone looks like, and we’ve got a good handle on some of its basic features, like a touchscreen, big QWERTY keyboard, fast 3G Internet connection (where available), etc. But like Apple’s (AAPL) iPhone, the Gphone’s software is going to be as important — if not more important — than the gadget itself. So in addition to the stuff we’ve already seen, like a nifty Google Maps app, here’s what we’re hoping Google has in store:
- A slick communications suite, including “push” GMail, Google Calendars, and IM. Basically a consumer-oriented BlackBerry service. Perhaps some sort of built-in file syncing between a PC/Mac, the cloud, and your phone — like Apple’s MobileMe, but free, ad-supported… and functional.
- Some buy-in from big game studios like Electronic Arts (ERTS). We’re surprised how much time we’ve spent playing games on the iPhone; Spore, for example, is an addictive time suck. We’re ready for more.
- A Web browser that’s fine-tuned to rock Google’s Web services, like Google Docs.
- Video recording that can upload straight to YouTube.
- A way to sync the Android phone with our Mac/PC that’s as simple and elegant as Apple’s iTunes. No one has come close. (Ideally via wifi/3G, in addition to USB.)
- “Visual voicemail” that transcribes your voicemail into an email.
- Copy and paste. Seriously.
Will we get some or all of these? We’ll see later this morning.
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