T-Mobile Planning the Return of the Sidekick Discussion

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  1. #1
    Brighthand Site Editor
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    Default T-Mobile Planning the Return of the Sidekick Discussion

    The Sidekick is one step closer to resurrection now that T-Mobile has confirmed that a 4G version of the discontinued T-Mobile phone is on its way. The next version of this once-popular consumer-oriented smartphone will run a new operating system.

    Read the full content of this Article: T-Mobile Planning the Return of the Sidekick

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  2. #2
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    Default Re: T-Mobile Planning the Return of the Sidekick Discussion

    It's not a bad idea. I wonder if Tmo will again offer a special rate plan for these. If they intend to slant it toward the young folks, it will have to be affordable. And if they don't teenager it too much, some older folks will buy in as well. That was what happened with prepaids.

  3. #3
    Hookette's edgy lately
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    Default Re: T-Mobile Planning the Return of the Sidekick Discussion

    The real question is, what will the Sidekick actually be? The Sidekick was cheap before because your data only existed on a server (which, oh yeah, crashed and lost the data). They surely aren't returning to that. So is this going to be just another lower end Android phone? What is distinctive about being a Sidekick? What makes it worth resurrecting after the previous unmitigated disaster?
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  4. #4
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    Default Re: T-Mobile Planning the Return of the Sidekick Discussion

    I think it will simply be a lower-end Android device. If they're smart, they will mimic the form factor of the old one as much as possible.

    I expect big G's servers have more fail-safes.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: T-Mobile Planning the Return of the Sidekick Discussion

    Just to remember in perspective, it was Andy Rubin, creator of Android, who also created the first Sidekick devices. At some point, Danger, the company he helped cofounded, kicked him out (or maybe he resigned from that) and from there he started his second venture, which became Android.

    Its really natural to see Android succeed the Sidekick. The Sidekick's main body design is also quite amenable to Android and if you notice, the G1's design doesn't fall far off from the Sidekick design. Android also inherits all the Cloud concepts from the Sidekick but Android does have the local storage persistence (i.e., stores contacts on local phone memory) that Sidekick lacks.

    The notable thing about Sidekick is that the name is owned by T-Mobile itself. In theory back then, Danger could have sold the same design to another carrier but it can't be called a Sidekick. It is the T-Mobile-Sidekick connection that also led T-Mobile to be the first carrier to offer Android devices (G1 and MyTouch 3G).

    The question is now who will make the new generation Sidekick? HTC? Previously, Sidekicks were made by Motorola and Sharp. Sharp lately has been going gangbusters with their own Android designs in Japan.
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  6. #6
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    Default Re: T-Mobile Planning the Return of the Sidekick Discussion

    Moto, of course, is already lousy with Android devices so no problem there.

    Sharp would be nice. They made the best scientific calculator I ever owned.

    Then there were the Zaurus PDAs.

    Would be nice to see them back in the U. S. market.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: T-Mobile Planning the Return of the Sidekick Discussion

    Here is a good picture of the T-Mobile G1 keyboard.

    Review: T-Mobile G1 ‘Google Phone’ Fresh Gear Weblog

    Here is a good picture of the Sidekick keyboard.

    Sidekick keyboard | Flickr - Photo Sharing!

    They are almost exactly the same.
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  8. #8
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    Default Re: T-Mobile Planning the Return of the Sidekick Discussion

    Like most of you, I think this is going to be a marketing move, in which T-Mobile puts the Sidekick name on a standard entry-level Android OS-based smartphone and that's it.

    It would be nice if I was wrong, and T-Mobile found some way to re-create some of that old Sidekick magic, but I don't think it's going to happen.

    As a guess, the carrier is going to start calling all its entry-level models targeting teens "Sidekicks".
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  9. #9
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    Default Re: T-Mobile Planning the Return of the Sidekick Discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by Drillbit View Post
    Here is a good picture of the T-Mobile G1 keyboard.

    Review: T-Mobile G1 ‘Google Phone’ Fresh Gear Weblog

    Here is a good picture of the Sidekick keyboard.

    Sidekick keyboard | Flickr - Photo Sharing!

    They are almost exactly the same.
    And, I might add, superior to most high-end smartphones lately.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ed Hardy View Post
    Like most of you, I think this is going to be a marketing move, in which T-Mobile puts the Sidekick name on a standard entry-level Android OS-based smartphone and that's it.

    It would be nice if I was wrong, and T-Mobile found some way to re-create some of that old Sidekick magic, but I don't think it's going to happen.

    As a guess, the carrier is going to start calling all its entry-level models targeting teens "Sidekicks".
    -
    I wonder what the differentiator can be? Consider the Cliqs and other less-espensive Androids already out there. Any phone can text. Any feature phone can play music. Most phones and certainly all Androids can do social networking. What do they think the teens want that they don't already have?

    And, if they saddle all the lower-end models as "Sidekicks", they run the risk of turning away older potential buyers who don't want or need the more expensive models, at least not as their initial purchase.

    I agree with Ed. They really need a well-targeted killer feature for the younger crowd but I doubt they have it.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: T-Mobile Planning the Return of the Sidekick Discussion

    I think the only differentiator I can think of is via styling. Its not hard to make something physically look like a Sidekick, with the same keyboard, then add an Android OS to it with a built in UI layer.
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