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Google blows $1.1bn to hire HTC's Pixel people, forming one big happy handset team

Anonymous Coward

About time!

HTC hardware has always been interesting, more so in the past... before this horrible trend of introducing new a candybar which looks exactly the same as every other candybar which will taste better honest, after you drop a grand on it your life will be so much more interesting as you mow down pedestrians while dazzled and befuddled by inaccurately displayed hyper bright OLED generated colors.

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Re: About time!

But that's exactly what the new Pixel phone is rumoured to be. Yet another Wannabeapple, thousand dollars trinket.

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Re: About time!

If you want a range of genuinely different phones, look at Moto - the range includes phones with extra big batteries, snap-on extra batteries, phones with guaranteed shatter-proof screens, ultra-slim phones... take your pick. I mention Moto here because the were once controlled by Google.

If you want a physical keyboard, the the Moto Mod system is the sanest way I've seen of adding one to a phone - though it isn't available yet it's exceeded 100% funding on Indiegogo.

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Re: About time!

There's lots of good phones that don't cost $1,000. The ones that do are trying to differentiate themselves in some way.

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Re: Dave 126

Shame the Motos keep lacking a magnetometer on non-US versions. It's a deal breaker for me.

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Re: About time!

I've got the original Moto-G and would update to a newer model but they don't have a notification LED, which is an absolute deal-breaker.

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Anonymous Coward

Bad luck HTC Pixel team

You're joining a US company. That means zero loyalty to the employees, shit-headed micro-management by a large army of PHBs masquerading as "veeps", endless status requests and interference in your work, pointless conference calls at really, really unsocial hours, an expectation that you don't have any life outside work.

And as soon as Alphabet decide they need to raise exec bonuses, it'll be cost cutting time, and you'll all be out the door with no thanks.

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Devil

Embrace, extend...

"Google... wants a pure-play GooglePhone it completely controls."

And so the end goal is now openly on the table - Google controlled hardware running an OS that is supposedly "open", but whose major contributor is in fact Google, and is so tightly coupled to Google's own 3rd party components that it is practically proprietary. And marketed at every opportunity on Google's web search.

All they need to do now is introduce a range of low-cost Pixel phones to undercut prices and slowly run their competitors out of business. And, of course, any court cases of anti-competitive behaviour (predatory pricing, search abuse) could be dragged out long enough so as not to make any difference.

Downvote if you like - but personally, the idea of the vast majority of public electronic communication being controlled by a single entity that's sole purpose is to profile you as closely as possible and doesn't mind playing fast and loose with the law (NHS records, monopoly abuse, stolen wifi details etc) fills me with dread.

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Re: Embrace, extend...

"Downvote if you like - but personally, the idea of the vast majority of public electronic communication being controlled by a single entity that's sole purpose is to profile you as closely as possible and doesn't mind playing fast and loose with the law (NHS records, monopoly abuse, stolen wifi details etc) fills me with dread."

Yes but enough about Apple...

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Nobody mentioned Motorola Mobility, which Google acquired in 2011 with the intention of building its own handsets

Google never stated that that was the intention. It was always a defensive move to stop some of Motorola's patents landing the in the hands of the competition of trolls who would sue, sue and more sure.

Won't be the same with HTC but little reason at the moment to suspect that Google wants mimic Apple, because control of the supply chain and customer service is more important than hardware designers. It might be all about kickstarting other product lines such as VR, where HTC is less of an also ran.

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> Won't be the same with HTC but little reason at the moment to suspect that Google wants mimic Apple, because control of the supply chain and customer service is more important than hardware designers

The evidence is that Google has been selling phones under its own name. More evidence is that Google has been hiring SoC designers so that it has software and silicon expertise in house, as Apple does. Tight OS and SoC integration seems to have served Apple well, and is worth learning from. It might be that Google want to fully design their own chips as Apple does, or merely have its own SoC experts to better liaise and plan roadmaps with the likes of Qualcomm.

But yeah, leverage over the supply chain is important.

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But yeah, leverage over the supply chain is important.

As is the retail operation.

Google is going to continue to develop and sell hardware but I expect it to be happy to remain a niche player. Lobbing out devices to showcase the services to encourage the market is very different from running warehouses and bricks and mortar shops full of "geniuses".

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Devil

bricks and mortar shops full of "geniuses".

They won't need them - all they'll do is splat a great big link on their search homepage and results page with a call to action along the lines of "Why not upgrade your mobile device experience today?", just like they did to make Chrome the #1 browser.

Hell, they'd probably "update" Chrome with the sole purpose of putting such a link somewhere on it so if Chrome's your browser of choice (ie: either your a web dev or you got taken in by the aforementioned links), you're seeing the advert every time you start your browser - especially on the mobile version when running on a competitor's device.

Then ordering will be just a couple of clicks, a name and address, a credit card number and a checkbox at next to a T&Cs link that nobody will read but contains clauses to allow Google to do what they damn well please with the device, the OS and any data they gather on you from any source, from now until the end of time.

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Anonymous Coward

Must be crap for the HTC employees who move

In the full knowledge that, like the Motorola staff before them, they'll never be viewed as proper Google employees. I take it overpriced Pixel has been selling none too well?

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Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory

First month at Google: Congratulations and welcome to the team! This is amazing and we have great expectations.

Second month at Google: You're so non-complaint with Google policies that we can't even look at you. Take training classes, you filthy outsider. These magic designer beverages will aid your journey.

Third month at Google: We have radical plans that will change humanity. We're making a premium always-on phone with 15 dimension sensors and Cloud AI that does what you want before you even know you want it. New VR and AR phones! Datacenter quality SoC processors. Phones for scuba diving! And there's still 4 billion people not yet touched by Google. We're going to build 25 million free and lightweight phones that can be taped to helium balloons to build a global mesh network. Starving populations in Africa and Asia will be changed forever.

Fourth month at Google: Keep up the good work! What are you working on?

Sixth month at Google: Look, Google is really busy so stop asking us for stuff. Just do what phone people do.

Seventh month at Google: We don't really have time for the scuba phone and balloon thing. We heard they're more complicated than expected. Can you take the microSD port off the last phone and release it as a new model?

Twelfth month at Google: Exciting news! You're going to be under new management that will empower you to do what you need to do. HTC is buying back the team! Not for any money, so you get nothing, but we'll e-mail you the new office address by Friday. Offboarding paperwork is on your desk.

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Mara chekku coconut oil

same as every other candybar which will taste better honest, after you drop a grand on it your life will be so much more interesting as you mow down pedestrians while dazzled and befuddled by inaccurately displayed hyper bright OLED generated colors.

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