Ever since rumors of an LG-manufactured Nexus phone have come up we’ve all been waiting to get a quick sneak peak at how it might look. Fingers were no doubt crossed that LG didn’t go with the “blocky” design philosophy they’ve seemed to adopt over the years, and it looks like we won’t have to worry about that if these photos are to be believed.
The corners are more rounded to look more like the Galaxy Nexus, there are no physical/capacitive navigation buttons, the camera and flash are offset to the left of the device, and the texture of the battery door that gives off a crystalized look (at least in these shots). A version of the device with a Nexus logo on the back reportedly exists, though it’s hard to tell which design will stand.
LG’s Nexus phone supposedly sports a quad-core Snapdragon S4 Pro chipset so this is shaping up to be the most powerful Nexus phone we have to date. It should be a lot more powerful than the current Galaxy Nexus, and it looks like the S4 Pro chipset might even best the quad-core Tegra 3 found inside the Nexus 7.
Google reportedly revamped the Nexus program to allow more OEMs to create any Nexus-branded devices for the exchanged obligation of adhering to a standard list of specs. If that rumor is still true then the device pictured above above and below might not even be the only Nexus phone to look forward to within the next Calendar year.
Alongside LG, other OEMs said to be looking to get in on the Nexus fun are Motorola, Samsung, and HTC, two of which have already made Nexus devices for Google in the past. It would be a very exciting time indeed, though we’d honestly be happy to get just one device if it was as powerful as the LG-made one described above.
Should these rumors be real we are expecting to hear more about the next Nexus device sometime between the end of October and the end of November in time for a holiday release.
One thing that has never been particularly solid in the Nexus program is Google’s release strategy. The Nexus One kicked it off with a failed distribution model that excluded the traditional retail experience. The Nexus S came along and made itself a lot more accessible in-store, but GSM carriers weren’t interested in subsidizing it.
More recently, the Galaxy Nexus had a period of exclusivity on Verizon’s network which meant Sprint customers had to wait months for a release, and GSM carriers were still against subsidy; Google eventually began offering the unlocked GSM version on its Play Store for that very reason. Note that things were much better outside America.
We would hope Google has enough clout to pull a Samsung and get this thing on all five major US carriers simultaneously, though it’s not clear whether it will be up to them or LG to shop this device to carriers.
Another facet of the Nexus program we’re hoping Google will get a better grasp on is the firmware upgrade game. Unfortunately some carriers, like Verizon, controlled updates for the Galaxy Nexus instead of the updates coming straight from Google.
This meant users had to wait extended periods of times for updates as small as bug-fixing/maintenance changes, as well as larger upgrades like the all-important android 4.1 Jelly Bean. If the Nexus line is as successful as we’d hope it is carriers should have no problem agreeing to a hands-off approach when it comes to software. But whether or not Google will make this a three-pronged dance — with carriers having to agree to let Google handle software upgrades in order to sell the device — remains to be seen.
All told, this LG Nexus is shaping up to be one hell of a device and we can’t wait to get even more information once we’re closer to its inevitable unveiling. Let us know what you think about these shots in the comments below! [via Android&Me]
- Hands-on: Sony Xperia M4 Aqua
- Google Play Services 7.0 details
- Hands-on: LG Watch Urbane
- Galaxy S6’s OIS vs. the iPhone 6
- Check out the Nexus 4 forums, see the specs, or find news and reviews.