Android launch: High interest or hype?

More than 30,000 people in the UK pre-registered with T-Mobile to purchase the G1 handset, the first device to run Google's Android operating system, and queues formed outside T-Mobile stores in central London.

The company also reported its stores had seen much higher interest in the Android handset than expected, with insiders predicting it would sell out of its pre-order allowance within a few days--as was seen in the US.

While Google and T-Mobile might be pleased with these early results--albeit a poor comparison with the iPhone launch--this first version has been criticised for its bulky form factor and some of the new Android applications are said to crash the handset whilst others have poor usability.

A survey conducted during the launch found the majority of users were not planning to spend out on a T-Mobile G1 handset. Of the 1,347 respondents to the poll, almost a third said they were not interested in purchasing a G1. The main barrier to purchase was price, and only 19 per cent of respondents said they were planning on signing up to the current T-Mobile G1 contract option.

But the results were not all gloomy with the Android open-source handset attracting 18 per cent of those polled as saying they would be interested in replacing their current handset once their existing contract is complete.

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