Why the HTC G1 Google Android Phone is a flop

We will get the HTC G1 Google Android phone and until then we will not pass judgment personally, we are going to say what many of our readers have said so far to date.

The T-Mobile HTC G1 phone powered by the new Google Android has not been a major success like people thought it would be, the hype and build up to this smartphone was immense and all we need is true figures to prove that it has been a success.

We have already published a couple of articles that are interesting for example the one about T-Mobile fails to auto-port 3G to G1 customers (Read Here) or how about Verizon saying do not bother buying a T-Mobile G1 phone (Read here).

This G1 phone is surely falling behind and lacking that sensational hype, the hyped has fallen as they say. The Google Phone went on sale on October 22 in the U.S and October 31 in the UK and already people are complaining of its flaws.

The first flaw is the fact that when the screen has been pushed up to reveal the QWERTY keypad it is a little difficult to hold the phone and type because of the bulky bottom which will obviously be located on the right hand side whilst typing, many customers have said that the bottom of the phone is in the way when typing.

Some say the phone is too clunky and cheap when handling, there is no 3.5mm headphone jack and the worst bit is when taking a call the chunky bottom hits your chin. Please let us know what you think of the HTC G1 Google Android Phone?


52 thoughts on “Why the HTC G1 Google Android Phone is a flop”

  1. I have had the G1 since launch day in the U.S. and I have to say that the complaints people have made about the G1 are people who are looking for something to complain about. Personally, I find the bottom of the phone is designed perfectly. I have fairly small hands and the bottom does not interfere in any way while typing. It actually allows you to hold the device better with one hand in between times when you are typing. It also gives you easy access to the hardware buttons and the track ball. If the whole front of the phone were to slide up with the screen you would have difficuly with the menu button, track ball, and back button.

  2. LoL, you must have some kind of f*d up chin! Flip phones stick out a lot more than that and people don’t complain. The chin of the G1 is one of the best design features. As far as the keyboard it can get a little annoying on the right side, not because its in the way but because you don’t have the same amount of space on the left side, I was used to a sidekick, but this is not much to get used to. I have seen killer apps in the market and great apps online (THAT I CAN INSTALL WITH OUT JAIL BREAKING), some with source code so I can modify them to whatever I want and more! This is killer for a device that you take on the go, this is a true hiptop, everything else so far is nothing more than an appliance. Excluding OpenMoko, which is just missing some polish.

  3. sum guy says:

    those are the same people who had there iphone in there lap as thay typed but anyway those are also the people who think marilyn monrore was fat because she was a plus size model. I happen to think she was beautiful as i do G1, to me its very sexy and contors perfectly to my hand and face. as for it being cluncky thats bull and unless you have weights in your arms you can hardly tell the difference when holding both. its been about 2weeks now and apple heads are going crazy about nothing

  4. sean says:

    I have had it for 2 weeks and LOVE it. Two of my friends fell in love with it after using mine and have bought it. You get used to typing on it after a minute -and it’s a HECK of a lot easier to type on than iPhone’s touchscreen keypad!

  5. Kevin says:

    I also have had my G1 since launch day, and agree that the negative backlash is unwarranted. I have not heard a single negative review from an actual G1 owner — some professional reviewers and many consumers are obviously still in love with their iPhones, and refuse to admit that the G1 does many things the iPhone can’t (customizable desktops, run 3rd party aps in the background, copy/paste to name a few). The hardware isn’t perfect, but the chin is a non-issue to me and I like the way the G1 feels in the hand far better than the iPhone. The addition of a trackball is also a huge help for browsing websites with many links.
    I think in a few months all of the hype/antihype will die down and people will realize that this is a solid device, and that android really might (and should) be the next big player on the mobile OS scene.

  6. Tim says:

    I’ll just reiterate what the others have already said. Those complaints are just people squawking for the sake of complaining. I’ve had my G1 since the morning it hit the retail stores and I love it. My wife loves her G1 too. I also like the chin and don’t find it in the way when typing. My previous flip phone had a MUCH steeper angle and was longer to boot.
    Now there are some real flaws out there. Battery life isn’t that great (but manageable) and sure there’s some missing software, but the later could easily get resolved over time. I still love my phone, but if I told you it was 100% perfect I’d be lying. Is there such a thing as a perfect phone? Not today there isn’t (for me anyway).

  7. I find this article meritless, poorly edited, and the grammar is atrocious. I see no sources cited for the opinions of the “readers”, and the article reeks of personal bias with an intent to vandalize the functionality of the G1.

    If I were to make a meritless and opinionated observation, I would claim it as my own and say that the author of this article is an iPhone fanboy and feels threatened for some reason by the potential success of the Android platform.

  8. Oscar says:

    I own the G1 I would like to first say that yes it might have some hardware limitations like not having a standard 3.5 mm or jack or support for stereo bluetooth headphones but those limitations I can live with. As far as the overall form factor it’s not as bad as some people make it out to be, the keyboard is great once you get use to it and I don’t even notice the “chin”. Yes I agree that it might not be as “sexy” as the Iphone but nonetheless it’s still a nice looking phone and let me tell you I LOVE IT! The apps are slowly but surely showing up in the app store and getting better every time. The android OS is badass! The texting, emailing, browsing experience is by far the best I’ve ever had in a phone including blackberry and BTW that’s with and EDGE connection so imagine with 3G! So if you’re on the fence go get one you won’t be disappointed. Flop my arse!

  9. Bob says:

    I\’ve been a T-mobile customer in the US for 3 years now, have had quite literally every smart phone they\’ve carried, including T809, BB Pearl, HTC shadow, etc… In all, about 25 phones…

    I now have the G1, I experienced the loss of data which I signed up for in my preorder… I have a few comments… First, the phone is not a flop however, it does not respond well in areas lacking 3G, Edge only areas render the phone basically a brick phone with only text, telephone, whereas my other \”slower\” phones responded with decent Edge speed, in a way, it is more reliable coverage and faster due to the seemingly lack of backward compatible G1.

    Short of that, the phone does have a profound creak when closed and you tap on the screen…

    Lacking all this, I see the phone even with the aforementioned flaws to be intoxicating to use, has not restarted simultaneously like my damn Blackberry device has, has not locked up like many a Windows mobile device has, has not deleted text messages due to running out of memory like my BB has before, has not had lockups like my Windows devices have has not given me error messages like my Samsung devices have nor I might add, caused chest pain when the phone wouldn\’t connect to the network when traveling.

    So now on to TMobile itself… why stay, why live with limited 3G? That one is ez because I have NEVER had a company be so easy to talk to in the way of Customer Service reps… the \”CSR\”s they employ are bubbly, happy, nice, in some cases actually sweet people who desire to help. Granted, TMobile appeals to a younger crowd but IMO, even a 40s something like myself does appreciate getting results when I call. Conversely, I called Verizon when I had them as my previous carrier, it sounded like a heavy detroit accented person with a who cares attitude, hold times were so irritating, I finally got to a CSR who didn\’t give answers, had an attitude, and when you threaten to cancel, you are reminded of your contract as an attitude like ha ha I have you, go ahead cancel.

    I had NEXTEL before that, same as Verizon but not as bad…

    Tmobile CSR\’s, support, and phone exchange policies are outstanding too, should my G1 cause me problems, you get to PDA support, if it cannot be worked out, usually you are offered a phone replacement on the spot. Should the phone be a lemon and have known issues that nobody can fix, TMobile has the ability to offer a alternate exchange with a limited offer of mailing in your phone and getting another model, FREE.

    Take that into account before calling the phone a flop.

  10. Craig says:

    Flop, stupid sensationalism headline. The iPhone had much more serious complaints than the ones that were pointed out. From losing emails from MobileMe, not being able to activate phones, keyboard on iPhone is nothing to scream about, and to stupid things like copy and paste. Even with those widely known problem it still doing incredibly well.

  11. Why are there sooooo many haters downing the G1??? It’s a great phone with a lot of growth potential!

    The keyboard is fantastic and the bottom of the phone is actually helpful for gripping the phone while texting & using the scroll ball & buttons like a mouse.

    I’m a huge Mac lover but the iPhone is just not 100% there yet. The G1 does certain things that the iPhone should have done on their newer version….that’s why i got the G1. Pretty sure in the future the iPhone will beat the G1 but not for now in my opinion.

  12. g ammol says:

    I truly thought this was auto-generated blogspam that took a half dozen articles and pieced together (rather poorly at that) fragments of sentences.

    On second reading it less informative than pay-by-the-word filler material.

    “Reviews of phones are important. Cellphone sales increase nearly every year. An important player in the industry is the Apple iPhone. Insert keyword here and maybe Google News will point to something about their new baby. Phones are good.”

  13. Carlos says:

    I’ve had the G1 for about two weeks now and my only complaint is the battery life (I’m used to the Curve). The chin does get in the way of typing but its not a big deal and you get used to it. People fail to see this platform as a revolutionary device unless they get the concept of “open source”. Given a few months time, and the linux community gets behind it; I really think its a definitive “Iphone killer”. They’re app market place is not biased and the phone is open. This is a new concept that’s hard to grasp for the regular user and we will reap the

  14. Carlos says:

    I’ve had the G1 for about two weeks now and my only complaint is the battery life (I’m used to the Curve). The chin does get in the way of typing but its not a big deal and you get used to it. People fail to see this platform as a revolutionary device unless they get the concept of “open source”. Given a few months time, and the linux community gets behind it; I really think its a definitive “Iphone killer”. They’re app market place is not biased and the phone is open. This is a new concept that’s hard to grasp for the regular user and we will reap the benifits.

  15. Rachel says:

    I got my phone two days after it came out only because the t-mobile stores were always packed and so many people were playing with it they could not keep the battery charged up enough. I am a techno challenged person but even I find this phone very easy to use. I tried the iphone and did not like it. I love the way it looks. I will keep this phone longer than any of the others from T-mobile. LOVE IT!!!!

  16. I have an iPhone. But I have had a chance to borrow my friends G1. I don’t understand what all the complaining is about. Side by side I found both phones wonderful to use. If I didn’t have an iPhone, I would have a G1. I have owned razors, tilts and tons of other phones. The G1 and the iPhone are the two best ones out there. I think either would more than fulfill the needs of the average and above average user. Most of the complaints against the G1 are just like the ones people make about the iPhone. I would be happy with either.

  17. NH says:

    I LOVE MY G1.
    I had a Shadow before this, and an iPhone before that.
    I like the g1 much better.
    my only “complaint” is how there is no spell check or whatever its called when typing

  18. Andoroid devoid of UMA says:

    I have never seen such a bunch of clueless
    backslappers. The Android has been a huge rippoff
    there is no UMA! Please tell my how Tmobile
    management allowed Google to kick them arround
    by forcing them to offer such a technologically poor

    I would be wanting Andy to be canned after this
    pathetic showing

  19. Other than the weak battery life and a few things here and there, the g1 kicks ass bigtime. All these people hating on the phone are just mad cause they payed more for a slower iphone. Iphone is prolly the best phone out now, but the g1 is as good or better. I just hope there will be better programs to come for the g1. People need to stop making tip calculators and get some fresh original apps.

  20. sum guy says:

    Ripoff. Funny iphone comes out, has everyone so excited that you now have a phone you cant live without and low and behold you cant change the battery without sending it in? whats this, there is a 8gb and 16gb that everyone bought. A few months later, 32gb, so you mean i have to buy a hole new phone i cant just throw in a memory card, no that slot is missing. even after that you now have to buy yet another iphone because now it has 3G and after 3 tries no video record, no removable battery, no memory card slot. At lease i wont have to by a new phone for a few years. Open source simply means those things missing from G1 will be here soon enough, SO COME FROM THE DARK SIDE LUKE

  21. Kevin says:

    @ Andoroid devoid of UMA

    Who are you calling clueless, guy. Yes the G1 is void of UMA, which is a shame though not something that I would use frequently. This however, is NOT Google’s fault. Please remember that Google produced the software on this phone, not the hardware. UMA is usually handled by a chip on T-mobile phones, and the G1 does not have this. If anything blame T-mo and HTC. HOWEVER, it should be possible to enable UMA through software and I happen to know that there are already capable developers working on this. So the openess of Android, thanks to Andy and his team, might actually render your complaint baseless in short order. So please, get a clue yourself before you call others clueless.

  22. Kevin says:

    UMA simply allows your phone to route calls through a Wi-Fi network if you are someplace where you do not have signal (or you want to conserve minutes). Think of it as vonage for your cell phone. Like I said, I think it’s just a matter of time before this is enabled via a 3rd party app – and you won’t have to pay T-Mo’s $10/month usage fee for it either.

  23. Chris says:

    Thanks for your explanation Kevin. Yes, the open source community will be onto this pretty sharpish I’d imagine! Where there’s a will, there’s a way, and where there’s a way, there’s an Android app developer! Loving this phone!

  24. jacky says:

    which is a shame though not something that I would use frequently. This however, is NOT Google’s fault. Please remember that Google produced the software on this phone,
    not the hardware. UMA is usually handled by a chip on T-mobile phones, and the G1 does not have this

  25. Andrew says:

    I think the G1 is great. I think the negative reviews are coming from people who have the i-phone and wish they had this phone. I agree with the above comment, your chin must be 3-4 inches long and curve up to hit the phone. I would keep that to myself! Sure, there are issues. But any new technology is going to have issues. This is a great phone and I cannot wait to see its potential unleashed!

  26. Andoroid devoid of UMA says:

    Again Folks, this seems more like a backslapper convention rather than an objective forum of posts. There is one very objective measure of what is going on w/ Google, take a look at GOOG the ticker symbol for the company. Its down, the android phone has done nothing for shareholders.

    In my humble opinion this trend will continue. While some have discussed an open source software solution it will have to be recognized by tmobile’s servers in order to do a true FMC handoff.

    Not only are there grave technical hurdles that the android phone poses to developers there are also significant proprietary concerns.

    To blame this on Tmobile when now nearly 1/3 of the phones they offer has UMA is a total bunch of garbage, to say that HTC is to blame is more of the same

    Anyone that makes excuses for a company that is up to its neck of wifi bandwith is nothing more than a mindless cheerleader for what is turning out to be a bunch of slugs

  27. DaVe says:

    I don’t understand. The HTC Website promised the G1 phone would have UMA. Or surely implied it.

    “The G1 is equipped with 3.5G and Wi-Fi technology… seamlessly switching to always offer you the best connection” (From the HTC website)

    A phone SEAMLESSLY SWITCHING between Wi-fi and 3G would be H U G E !!!. Yet I am hearing here it can’t even access uma and T-mobiles hot spots?

    Is this a scam or am I missing something? Why would T-mobile and HTC get together and then COMPLETELY ignore the strong points of their component capabilities?

  28. Chris says:

    Could someone eventually develop an app to switch between 3G and Wifi when Wifi becomes available? And UMA too? Or is this not practically possible? There are new apps being developed every day. After just a couple of weeks, and one HTC handset, the range of apps is astounding. Imagine after 6 months and several more handsets adopting Android. I am sure there will be fixes.

  29. DaVe says:

    Chris – I can’t imagine a software app doing all of this by itself. The software could control the phone side I guess, but there has to be something on the 3G side to negotiate this stuff too. That’s where T-mobile IS SUPPOSED to come in, but they chose not to for some reason.

    To seamlessly switch, I would think you need a SYSTEM comprised of;
    1) the dual mode phone
    2) a cell network controller (UMA?)
    3) software to run it.

    I’ve been waiting for this for a long time and I thought it was finally here, then P L O P !

    Why is the industry talking all around this and not doing it? Maybe they are trying and there are technical problems, I’m not a techie. IF they can’t do it, I wish they would just admit it instead of always having these vague promises they will have it.


  30. DaVe says:

    Followup post –

    Or does anybody really care? I may be the only one who thinks seamless switching to/from 3G to wifi is big. My rough calcs tell me this could save my small company (15 phones) approximately $18,000/year. Think about a bigger enterprise.

  31. Chris says:

    I’d like seamless everything 🙂 DaVe, until something meets your needs, have you downloaded ‘ToggleSwitch’ which lets you quickly turn wifi on and off, among other options. Another app, ‘Anycut’, allows you to create a shortcut to Network Settings to toggle 3G/2G. Quite useful. I use it to try to preserve battery life; my biggest problem with the G1.

  32. DaVe says:

    I didn’t buy the G1 Chris, wanted to but walked out disappointed re the above. So maybe I shouldn’t even be here posting.

    That said, If anything does come up, like an app or something that allows seamless calls, would you post it?

    (And IS the G1 UMA “capable” then? Just waiting for software?)

    Thanks in advance.

  33. Chris says:

    Sure DaVe I will keep my eyes open for you. I must say I haven’t had any issue switching between 3G and wifi. I keep the phone on wifi and 3G unless I’m trying to save battery, and the phone alerts me when a new wifi connection is available, and it seems to remember used ones i.e. my own house, friends, pubs etc. I have only used it moderately for a week (still transitioning from my old mobile), so don’t take my word as a professional opinion or anything. The UMA isn’t really that much of a concern for me, thought it would be nice.

  34. Andoroid devoid of UMA says:

    Voip is superior to any other standard for voice its
    the “fixed” side of FMC (fixed mobile convergence)

    I kind of feel bad for raining on your guys parade
    but I have to be honest, I was ready to buy an android
    two of them actually along w/ a Tmobile hot spot, I
    had my heart set on it, and very frankly planned
    on it as being a solution to replace our current plan
    w/ sprint.

    for you guys having the phone pulled all together
    is equivalent to having UMA pulled for me

    so I really feel justified at being fuming mad at GOOG
    and specifically at Andy “RuBufo’n” since from what
    I gather from all the blogs was calling all the shots on
    the POS

  35. PulSamsara says:

    This gPhone vs. iPhone comparison is a fools argument… It takes me back to my rural upbringing… ie. Ford vs. Chevy… (uhhh.. Toyota!)

    The iPhone is beautiful… it is wonderful… for some people it will even make you grow an extra inch ! It’s a post-mod phantasmagorical titanium white consumer junkies delight daddy-o !

    The gPhone is open source… it can not be contained in hardware… it is ethereal. It is open code wrapped around an enigma… it is why 15th century Europe out competed 15th century China on the world stage (see Jared Diamond). In it the future.

    In short… both are great devices… either make great plastic extensions of ourselves.

  36. DaVe says:

    I’m starting to figure this UMA thing out a little. Apparently the dual mode phones (dual spectrum phones) have been around for awhile and that is not the question that has been bothering me. The seamless auto switching is what I have been after. I saw a press release today that brings the issue to the front.


    It appears that I am not the only interested in this, I wonder if this lawsuit is what stopped T-Mobile from activating the G1 seamless switching as HTC advertised would be available.

  37. DaVe says:

    Nothing for or against the G1 or Skype or anything.
    All* I am interested in is the seamless switching. That’s what will save me some money in my small company. If I have to “make” my employees manually switch to a wi-fi network to save me money, it won’t happen. Need to give them phones or a system or whatever so they don’t think about it, it just happens.

    THEN I will save money. (If it works like I am thinking it should)

    *Well….maybe 95% of “all”

  38. Chris says:

    I know that the 3G and Wifi do automatically switch i.e. when Wifi isn’t available the 3G is enabled instead. However, it seems the phone does not enable calls through wifi as you seem to require. Maybe T-Mob will settle some agreement with the company filing this lawsuit and you’ll eventually get your wish!

  39. DaVe says:

    Thanks Chris, that wish is what I am after, maybe being a little naive in doing so.

    I thought that was the “UMA” part that apparently didn’t happen. I thought that would enable seamless switching and meant while on a call going from GSM to Wi-fi or vice-versa.

    When (if) it happens, I know there will be at least one customer.

  40. Peter says:

    I haven’t yet seen a G1 in the flesh, so I don’t know whether the phone is any good. (I would be interested to know if it is.)

    But I do know that this article is very badly researched, qualified, and awfully written. Even Wikipedia articles are more thoroughly edited than this, avoiding ‘weasel words’ and backing up claims with references to third parties (not just more of the site’s own articles).

    I won’t be looking here for more reviews, whether or not I get a G1.

  41. Andoroid devoid of UMA says:

    I think its worthwhile to review information were it may seem to be then to weigh it for its worth as knowledge.

    In this case, ive been hard on many of the posters here because of their ignorance regarding the value that is added by having seamless FMC

    I will say this, and this is ment to be a slight on google rather than much of the posters here, the fact is that google as a technology company should keep abreast of its core loyal consumer base and strive to bring that base to the “next level” quickly as necessary.

    Clearly Goog has not done this w/ what someday will likely become their core technology, that is FMC i am frankly shocked that a device associated w/ the latest genius company on the block has a lack luster core feature set and i am even more shocked that investors are not aware of such

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