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Chinese Android phones delayed by political fight

updated 11:10 am EST, Tue January 19, 2010

Moto, Samsung Android pushed back

Google today delayed the launch of a pair of Android phones due to its ongoing political dispute with China. Following tensions over the Chinese government allegedly hacking into US-based servers and Google's anti-censorship response, the latter has decided against releasing new Motorola and Android phones on Wednesday. The search firm didn't say when it expected to reschedule the launch.

No official reason has been given, though a Reuters source argues that Google wants to prevent the controversy over the e-mail intrusions from tarnishing the phones' launch. It wants a "positive experience" that's less likely to happen in the current climate.

The phones aren't named, but the Motorola device is likely the XT701, the Chinese version of the MOTOROI.

Google already has a significant footprint in the Chinese smartphone business as it not only counts shipping phones like the Dell Mini 3i but a whole swath of phones running the Open Mobile System, a government-backed variant of Android that is found on China Unicom phones like the Lenovo O1. However, should Google be forced to leave due to political pressure, these are likely to be cast into doubt.

by MacNN Staff



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