After leaking word of it back in July, T-Mobile finally announced plans for the G2, the evolution of the incredibly popular G1 smartphone. As of right now, we don’t have all the details, and we might not even have them all at the end of September when T-Mobile allows preordering. Nevertheless, there was enough information packed into that T-Mobile press release to make a comparison between the G1 and G2, and to speculate on any potential price differences. One particularly good bit of news is the early indication that G1 chargers should work with the T-Mobile G2, and some accessories, like memory cards, will also work.
As for most consumers, the greatest difference will be the T-Mobile’s revamped HSPA+ network, which promises 4G-like speeds. Now, you’ll probably here some bickering between the carriers about the claims, but as far as the average consumer is concerned, it’s all noise. What matters is HSPA+ (up to 14.4 Mbps) will be noticeably faster than the G1 on 3G (up to 7.2 Mbps), and while 4G is theoretically faster, you’ll have moved on to a new phone anyway. There is, however, one concern about the move to these faster networks: battery life.
Prior to the G2 announcement, word was that the HSPA+ connectivity apps were power thirsty. So word had it that next-gen T-Mobile phones would have been either using larger batteries or cut the power usage elsewhere. And that looks to be exactly what happened as the press release suggests that the G2 will use an 800 MHz Snapdragon processor rather than the 1 GHz CPU many of us expected. We have to admit that this is a worrisome change since it suggests that the HSPA+ apps are an issue. We’re not sure we like the idea of less CPU power dealing with a more demanding OS and apps. Nevertheless, clock cycles aren’t everything, so we’ll just have to take a wait and see approach.
There are several other big changes to the phone as well, and they’re all for the better. Instead of 192 MB of internal memory, the G2 has 4 GB, and it includes an 8 GB MicroSD card as opposed to the 1 GB in the G1. Users will be able to upgrade to either a 16 or 32 GB card as well. The new display is quite nice as well, 3.7-inch (480×854) compared to the 3.2-inch (320×480) on the G1. The T-Mobile G2 also includes a 5- rather than 3.2-megapixel camera, and recording is 720p HD rather than 480p SD.
One other significant difference will be its us of the T-Mobile-tweaked Android 2.2 Froyo operating system. The T-Mobile uses the Android 1.6 Donut, and we probably don’t have to tell you how much change there has been since then and now. Froyo brings a lot of exciting potential to T-Mobile’s G series, and we really look forward to seeing how well the G2 leverages it. Right now, it looks as if T-Mobile will price the G2 at $199, which was exactly what the original G1 was priced at. There is also a rumor going around that a $499 unlocked edition will be available, which seems steep for a non-1GHz smartphone