I've been in this business for 357 years, but I can't recall a time when we've had more written about products that do not actually exist. We are truly living in the golden age of vaporware.
Exhibit A: This week TechCrunch's Michael Arrington caused a stir when he insisted -- really, he was almost banging his shoe on the table over it -- that Google would come out with its own cell phone, free and clear of any carrier. Per L'Arrington:
...there are a few things we have absolutely confirmed: Google is building their own branded phone that they’ll sell directly and through retailers. They were long planning to have the phone be available by the holidays, but it has now slipped to early 2010. The phone will be produced by a major phone manufacturer but will only have Google branding.
Never mind that this would totally tick off all the handset manufacturers and telecoms that have partnered with Google on Android phones. Because, I guess, Google is just that stupid.
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PC Mag Editor in Chief Lance Ulanoff did not mince words in a rebuttal column:
If you say something, does it automatically make it so? Clearly, that's what TechCrunch's Michael Arrington thinks. Today, he proclaimed that "The Google Phone Is Very Real. And It's Coming Soon." The story outlines what TechCrunch has "absolutely confirmed" and then knits together a series of assumptions and possible clues into what appears to be a quilt of un-attributed fabrication.
And, because some people never truly graduated from junior high, Arrington responded via Twitter:
i'm seriously concerned for @lanceulanoff. If you're his friend, reach out to him. He needs to know someone loves him.