A Google executive gave a sneak preview of the company's new mobile phone yesterday at a developer's conference in London.
Attendees were shown the handset as part of a presentation on Android, the new operating system the company has developed esecially for the mobile platform. Identifying marks on the phone were reportedly covered up, and Google has since refused to confirm that it was in fact a demonstration version of the product to be released imminently. The handset is believed to be manufactured by HTC, and provisionally called "Dream".
The phone is expected to be formally announced at a joint press conference held by Google and T Mobile in New York next Tuesday. The UK release date is speculated to be sometime next month, and handset manufaturer HTC hopes to ship 600,000-700,000 units this year worldwide.
The operating system is open source, allowing developers to create their own software for the phone. The handset has a slide-out keyboard, and features such as the inbuilt accelerometer and global positioning system will put it in direct competition with Apple's iPhone in the run-up to Christmas.
Footage of the phone from yesterday's conference