Not to say "we told you so," but we told you so. Google won't be releasing its own Android hardware. Not now, not ever.
Head of Android development Andy Rubin states the obvious by saying it would be foolish for Google to "compete with its customers" who license the OS. In his own words, "We're not making hardware. We're enabling other people to build hardware."
This is how licensing OSes has generally worked, with the PC and Windows Mobile. (But not with the Mac during the clone wars, which eventually ended in cancellation.)
As CNET points out, Google sometimes plays a part in designing phones. Apparently the hinge mechanism in the G1 was added at Google's request. But that's a long way from designing a whole phone.
Phones like the Droid were also rumored to have been developed with Google helping along the way. As long as the trend keeps up, I'm sure Google will be perfectly happy to let Motorola, HTC and others spread their OS like the sneaky little world-dominating thing it is. [CNET via Electronista]