IMHO – Google Android needs to pick up the pace

Before I staggered, bleary–eyed, onto a Barcelona–bound plane last Sunday, the only thing that was truly firing my gadgety passions was the idea of Go

Six days later and I'm craving sleep and wondering what happened to all those gorgeous gPhones I was supposed to be talking up right here. Because aside from the HTC Magic, which any gadget hound knew about week's ago (as the G2), there was not a single, UK–bound handset on show.

Which leaves me to wonder whether Google, and every mobile player involved in the Open Handset Alliance, is taking a far too relaxed approach in getting Android under the noses of the gadget–loving public.

I've already seen and heard plenty right here on from disgruntled punters, wondering why an open platform is currently tied only to T–Mobile and Vodafone. That will change, but it's over 18 months since Google first promised they would revolutionise mobile phones. And frankly it hasn't happened.

If they want to get it out there, they need to get LG. Sony Ericsson, Samsung and Asus moving. Android Market cannot succeed on the scale of Apple's App store if it's only on two devices, one of which hasn't even gone on sale yet. You can talk about apps on Android being cleverer and more integral to Google phones than the iPhone (and there's no denying they are). But with only 500,000 G1's out there, compared to 13 million iPhones (EDGE and 3G) by October 08, it really is time Google picked up the pace.

I honestly believe Google Android has the power to topple Apple's growing dominance. Android is cooler than the iPhone, open source, as easy to use and offers far more cache for urbane gadgeteers wanting to find new ways to get the most from their mobile.

If that's to happen, then Google needs to start working now to ensure we don't forget their awesome OS in the wake of the next–gen iPhone and even Windows Mobile 6.5.