Alarm horns and sirens going off all over the blogosphere as sleuths at APC and TechCrunch put together data points and predict a possible debut at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona on Feb 11. The possible tip-off? Google has booked two floor stands at the event.
Of course, any GPhone debut will really just be the debut of third-party devices capable of running Android — such as Bug Labs “Bug,” which we published pictures of last month. And those two booths on the Barcelona floor will likely mostly be about whipping up developer and handset manufacturer support for Android, or showing off prototypes running early versions of the operating system.
(If you have any time on your hands over the holidays, you might want to get a head start on coding. Google has offered $10 million in prize money for the best Apps. APC:
The first stage of the Android Developer Challenge, running from January 2nd to March 3rd 2008, will see “the 50 most promising entries… that make use of Android’s capabilities to deliver a better mobile experience” score a US$25,000 handout “to fund further development”. As the apps come into fruition, Google will dole out 20 follow-up awards, 10 of US$275,000 and 10 of US$100,000).
APC says Android is built on a Linux kernel (which we already knew) and has multiple screenshots of the purported Android screen interface. It also reprints Gizmodo’s picture of a “dog-ugly” brick running Android (below):
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