Prepare to join the Stepford cult of Android

MWC is a phone show that inspires the kind of rabid, frothing fanaticism usually reserved for Star Trek conventions.

Ramping it up to fever pitch this year was Google, which littered almost every stall with bowls full of pin badges promoting its mobile operating system.

There were 86 different variations (Androids with rocket packs, Androids walking a dog, Androids playing instruments) and as the conference drew to a close, frenzied geeks darted from one stand to the next, desperate to collect them all.

To complete the set, of course, they had to visit the Google stall – and it wasn't difficult to spot.

Huge snot-green Androids perched on pedestals, displaying the latest Google-powered handsets. On the walls, mobile phones slid past as if on a production line. There was a robot the size of a room. There was even a SLIDE. It was the geek equivalent of Willy Wonka's chocolate factory.

Everywhere you turned young, attractive people with Stepford smiles – the Googlers – wore Android T-shirts and the kind of nervous, exaggerated grins you'd expect to see on someone who knows that somewhere nearby a gun is trained directly at their crotch, the trigger ready to be pulled at the first facial slip. More Googlers churned out smoothies named after the various iterations of the Android operating system (gingerbread, cupcake, honeycomb); a veritable chain gang of grinning Umpa-Lumpas.

As the clock neared the hour mark, they all began to dance, limbs flailing, fixed smiles almost tearing through their faces. One by one, they fired themselves down the slide, landing next to another model Android, like disciples hurling themselves at the feet of Jesus. A fat man squeezed himself down, presumably convinced Google would make him thin. I expected to see a blind man searching for his sight fly down next. The geeks rallied around as the Googlers handed out limited edition scale models of the Android.

Apple is often likened to a cult – its followers flocking to the sheer white and aluminium of its stores, hanging on the every word of its messianic leader Steve Jobs.

But Google was promoting a different sort of religion, a technological evangelism. And as it continues its inexorable rise, soon we’ll all be members of the church.

As the show drew to a close, a geek spotted me with the two badges I had collected. He shot me a look of pity one would give a recently trampled puppy, reached into his pocket and handed me a badge. Creepy? Not at all.