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Hackers graft Google Android onto hardware

As first prototype surfaces

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Mobile phone handsets based on Google's Android platform are due to appear some time in the second half of this year but hackers have already got a cut-down version of the software running on devices.

By combining an Android Software Development kit with an emulator and a Poky Linux kernel, a hacker called Cortez has created an installer which enables interested parties to run the platform on the Sharp Zaurus PDA. A similar approach allowed the platform to run from an Atmark-Techno Armadillo-500 CPU board, Telecoms.com reports.

In both cases, the hacked-together software offer limited functionality only.

In related news Taiwanese vendor Wistron NeWeb unwrapped a prototype of what may become the first commercially available Android phone. Prototypes of the GW4 phone feature a touch screen and QWERTY keyboard, a 2 mega-pixel camera, WiFi, Bluetooth and VoIP support. Early examples run MontaVista Linux.

The gizmo runs on a OMAP 1710 chipset with a 216MHz processor but just 64MB of memory, Information Week adds. ®

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