Well then, chalk another massive unreserved fcuk-up on the ‘Google Screw-up Blackboard’. TechCrunch reports that Google is shelving plans to disintermediate the planet’s mobile phone industry. If you recall, google.com/phone was intended to be your one-stop-shop for Android handsets where you could, if you wished, pick up a handset unlocked or select your dumb pipe/bank of choice to get the device on contract and subsidised. That was the idea. And it was a very real threat to the industry. Until about 20 minutes into the launch when it became clear that Google couldn’t cope with actual real people asking questions. The one thing you can’t do with customers paying 500 quid for a device is plug them into an API. No. Someone has to answer the phone at the end of the day. Or at least the email. I know many of the operators I’ve spoken to are privately filled with glee at the unmitigated screw-up. One thing operators can do in their sleep is manage 18 million customers reasonably competently. It seems as though Google simply couldn’t hack it, with some operators refusing to play along with the google.com/phone concept. I’d have liked to have seen a lot better. An awful lot better. Meanwhile I’m beginning to side with many who refer to Google in a reasonably accurate manner as a one-trick-multi-billion-dollar-pony. Oh, and Gmail/Google apps is good too. Gahhhh.