Google phone disappears, nothing to see here, says Vodafone

Vodafone has pulled the HTC Magic 'Google phone' from sale in New Zealand, but is cagey on details about why.

This morning blogger Ben Gracewood noticed the Magic had disappeared from the Vodafone website.

The response to calls to Vodafone retailers this morning was that the phone can be bought for $1099, but there are none in stock and it is not clear when it will again become available.

Vodafone spokesman Paul Brislen said that the phone's sudden absence was due to a "commercial issue that Vodafone is having" but declined to give any details.

"We are working to resolve it," he said.

It is unclear how long it will take to fix the mystery issue and make the Magic available again.

The much-hyped phone was released at a celeb-fest party at Auckland's swank Rendezvous Hotel last week, uses Google's open-source Android operating system.

Vodafone has also declined to comment on web rumours that the Magic act was related to offence taken over body-painted girls at the party.

The HTC, which was released earlier in the year elsewhere, is a second-generation version of the T-Mobile G1 - the original Google phone - which was available in America and Europe.

A deal between Vodafone PLC and Taiwanese phone maker HTC was announced at the Mobile World Congress trade show in Barcelona in February.

- NZ HERALD STAFF

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