'Secret' Droid Shadow discovered -- the nonsense has gone too far

We all love dish -- too bad most of what we get is so trite

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Here we go again. The fanboy sites are all abuzz about the alleged discovery of the forthcoming Droid Shadow, a successor to the Motorola Droid. Supposedly, it was left in a Verizon corporate gym and found by a gym employee, who sent pics to Gizmodo before returning the device to the owner. This all sounds way too convenient to be a real loss, such as when the purported Apple iPhone 4G was discovered in a San Jose, Calif., pub last month.

Even Gizmodo knows this is not a big deal; the "find" is not even on its home page. After all, it's just an upgrade to the original Motorola Droid. Whoop-de-do.

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Product leaks are nothing new, and there's a whole cottage industry around publishing leaks and about aranging leaks to get the coverage that usually ensues. I bet that at least half of the product leaks are part of the compay's stealth marketing campaign in this era of blog-based rumormongering.

In the case of a next-gen iPhone, people really do care, since each new model has raised the bar significantly -- and the annual new model is it for the rest of the year. In the case of Android devices, there's a new one every few weeks, so any individual model doesn't mean much. The breathless attention some place on these frequent releases is misplaced, just as is the "news" of a specific BlackBerry model being available at this carrier or that carrier. They're molehills trying to masquerade as mountains.

A mobile leak worth your attention would be a smartphone based on the forthcoming Windows Phone 7 OS. Or the first HP WebOS slate. Or the first Chrome OS Internet appliance -- in other words, something that actually matters.

Of course, the sad truth is that these leak stories work -- they're the tech industry's version of the trashy TV gossip entertaiment shows and the supermarket tabloids -- disposable. Irrelevant. A quick thrill. I guess I want better dish. Oh well; I'll have the iPhone 4G soon enough to go all fanboy over.

This article, "'Secret' Droid Shadow discovered -- the nonsense has gone too far," was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Get the first word on what the important tech news really means with the InfoWorld Tech Watch blog.