Google is finally making its own iPhone rival

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The official Google phone is coming.
The official Google phone is coming.
Photo: Google

Apple and Google are set to face-off as direct competitors in the smartphone wars later this year, according to a new report that claims the search-engine giant is finally preparing to make its own smartphone hardware.

Google has offered a “pure” Android experience for years with its lineup of Nexus phones made by the likes Motorola, LG and Huawei. However, it appears that the company is ready to tighten its control of the Android platform by going toe-to-toe with iPhone by making its own handset.

Google wants its Nexus phones to be more like the iPhone

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The official Google phone is coming.
The official Google phone is coming.
Photo: Google

Google’s flagship Nexus 6P delivered significant design improvements last year, putting its hardware on par with the best devices from rival manufacturers. But Google wants the Nexus lineup to be even more like the iPhone.

To make that happen, the company will reduce its reliance on third-party manufacturing partners like Huawei and LG and assume greater control over Nexus hardware, according to one report.

Google to follow Apple into building its own mobile chips

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Androids tend to me more affordable, but that doesn't mean they're cheap.
Androids tend to me more affordable, but that doesn't mean they're cheap.
Photo: Google

Google is in talks with chipset manufacturers with a view to designing its own processors and other components for future Android devices, according to a new report.

The company is said to be interested in following Apple’s footsteps in an effort to make Android “more competitive” at the high end of the market, and to “solve other major problems.”

Liveblog: Tim Cook talks biz at Box conference

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Apple chief Tim Cook (that's not him in the photo) will talk iOS 9 and the future of work at the BoxWorks conference today in San Francisco.
Apple chief Tim Cook (that's not him in the photo) will talk iOS 9 and the future of work at the BoxWorks conference today in San Francisco.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

SAN FRANCISCO — Will Tim Cook do anything to steal Google’s thunder?

The Apple CEO is back at the Moscone Center, this time for BoxWorks 2105, the annual gathering of customers and developers for enterprise cloud storage company Box.

It’s a rare speaking gig for Cook, who tends to limit his engagements to just a few high-profile events a year. While big and successful, Box’s conference is hardly one of the marquee events on the tech calendar. Unless it falls on the same exact day Google is announcing new products at its big Nexus media event.

“He’s f****ing with Google,” said one analyst in the press room when asked why Cook chose this event.

Cook is likely to talk up the new iPad Pro and Apple’s enterprise efforts, which include partnering with IBM and Cisco. Read on to see what he says. We’re liveblogging the event. Cook will be onstage at 9 a.m. Pacific.

T-Mobile Plans To Stop Subsidizing Smartphones And End Long-Term Contracts

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T-Mobile recently announced that they’ve reached an agreement with Apple to start selling the iPhone in 2013. Coming on the heels of their iPhone announcement, T-Mobile says they plan to stop subsidizing smartphones in 2013 to give customers more freedom.

All four of the major U.S. carriers offer smartphones at a subsidized price, giving subscribers a discount in exchange for tying them to a two-year contract. The contract helps the carriers retain customers, and the lower price point of the smartphone makes customers happy, but it also ramps up costs and restricts customers from upgrades. T-Mobile says they want to get rid of that system entirely.