Google plans to do something it has never done before that will shake up the smartphone market. The U.K. publication The Telegraph reports that the company will release its own Google-branded smartphone, bringing it into direct competition with the iPhone.
“The technology giant is in discussions with mobile operators about releasing a Google-branded phone that will extend the company’s move into hardware, sources familiar with the discussions told The Telegraph,” the publication reports. “Google already develops the Android operating system that runs on four in five smartphones sold around the world, and endorses a range of phones made by partners such as LG and Huawei under the Google Nexus brand. But unlike Apple, it leaves manufacturing to other companies such as Samsung, with the company concentrating on developing the free software that runs on its phones.”
The report cites a senior source saying the new device will be released by the end of the year.
“Although Android runs on the majority of smartphones sold globally, Apple still dominates the lucrative high-end of the market,” the report notes. “The proliferation of Android device makers, many of which apply the software differently, means Google has struggled to ensure consistency, with some smartphone owners waiting months for updates.”