Traditionally in the Android development cycle, major versions have launched at the end of the year (exception being Gingerbread/Honeycomb). According to the Wall Street Journal, Android Jelly Bean should launch this year, “by Thanksgiving”.

Will this be Android 5.0 or another version? That depends on Google’s plans for their I/O developer event happening in June. Andy Rubin’s team has two options: one, launch an Android 4.1 version with some improvements at I/O (and call it Jelly Bean), and then give a new name to Android 5.0. Two, use the event to showcase upcoming features of Android 5.0 Jelly Bean, and release it this fall.

Now, the rumor in WSJ says that Google is getting five manufacturers (probably Samsung, HTC, Motorola, Sony and LG – no love for Huawei, Google?) to release “Nexus devices”, all at the same time, this fall. How is this possible? Well, Google plans to give all of them early access to the next major version of Android, much like Microsoft does with Windows and WP7 manufacturers.

Google plans to launch the next version of Android with all of them at once , with some less important manufacturers launching a little later.

So what does this mean for us, the users? It means that we get to choose from at least 5 phones and maybe some tablets, too (some manufacturers will choose to release both a phone and a tablet), so our choices for stock Android devices will greatly improve. Even better, they will all be available from day one. That means that, if you don’t like a particular Nexus device, you have several others to choose from, and you won’t have to wait many more months until other devices appear.

This deal means that stock devices will flood the market. Also, manufacturers will have early access to the Android code, meaning that they will also be able to upgrade their skins faster and  launch new devices faster. However, the first devices will still be only stock Android. And Google should make sure of that through a formal agreement.

According to WSJ, the Nexus devices will most likely be sold through Google’s Play Store in US, Europe and Asia, which again is a great move for Google, because they’ll be able to wrestle control over Android from carriers. It won’t hurt carriers too much, because at least in US, most people still buy phones through carrier subsidies, but it should work very well in markets in Europe and Asia.

Overall, this is a very smart move from Google, that will benefit themselves, the consumers, and even the manufacturers.

  • tBs_Battousai

    I think they should only release 5.x when at least 70% of devices are running 4.x and when you can no longer buy a new phonetablet running 2.x3.x

    • m8

      and that’s what i think they’ll do

    • Altashcheth

      That’s the problem. The manufacturers don’t update things quickly enough. That’s why after Bantu months only a handful of devices have ICS. Some manufacturers are still releasing gb devices.

    • That would mean waiting at least 2 years for a new version. That seems too much. Once per year should be ok.

  • Rik Santorum

    Great! I think!

  • AndroidBrian

    Great idea. This is great news! With all these brands making a nexus phone I’m sure its a safe bet to say that the next Nexus will actually be the best phone spec wise opposed to just being superior software wise and thats it. With all of these brands competing to have the best Nexus Especially with them all for sale on Google play is huge! Maybe we will finally get a Nexus with a SD slot now.

    Finally now when people want to talk about android they will just simply have to talk about Nexus phones the only true android experience.

    Hope this becomes the norm. Top 5 phone manufacturer’s making a nexus! Imagine that new rumored crazy LG phone being a nexus! Very excited!

  • AppleFUD

    The problem is, the average user wants a subsidized handset. Therefore, these Nexus devices most likely will not sell well and therefore not have a major impact on carrier’s behaviors, at least for a while.

    If Google can drive down the unlocked price of the devices then they have a chance at breaking the carrier’s strangle hold on device updates — carriers wont be happy with people not on contract and leaving at will and may finally get a clue and sell the Nexus devices properly, without their crap and “testing” . . . similar to Europe.

    OF the FCC & Congress could pull their heads out of their back sides and do the right thing and cut carriers out of the picture. . . again, similar to Europe.

    • SatyaChowdary

      Verizon g-nex was 299 for the best part of 5months. I will buy an unlocked version for 400 any day….

      • AppleFUD

        That’s why I went ahead and purchased from Google Play at $400 — T-Mo might get it but most likely will ask $200+ . . . and a higher contract. And today there is news they will offer some decent data package discounts for unlocked devices.

        However, the price on the GNexus was $550+ until Google Play released it. Not much to say but that’s the way people are — how else can we explain the 3GS sales??? lol

        The Verizon GNexus was/is a complete mess — pay extra to be their beta tester for months on end != a “Google Nexus” experience at all!

    • I think that’s mostly true in US and Canada. In Europe and even Asia many prefer to buy them unlocked. This will start with high-end devices, but I’m sure Google wants to put low-end devices with stock Android in their store, too later on – devices that you can get for $200 unlocked.

      • AppleFUD

        I’m not so sure about Europe. Recent comments form people in Europe I’ve read say that they usually go with a contract because they can get great deals because of how things are setup — carriers give more aggressive deals to get you on contract. However, I do agree that over there it is much more reasonable to consider an unlocked device and they are accustomed to that option. . . definitely not in the states.

  • ฺBoonlumsion Piyapon

    don’t forget about $250 7″ nexus tablet rumor …

  • I’d be overjoyed to buy a plain vanilla Android phone as a subsidized device from my carrier, as I intend to stay with them for the next two years anyway. AT&T, why don’t you want my money ?

  • Abu Laloque

    Samsung, HTC, Asus, the top 3…Motorola with wildcard. LG/Sony/Acer to make the fifth

  • Sejal Malik

    Checkout Google’s new Android 5.0 ‘Jelly Bean’ smartphones and tabs:

  • I thought Ice Cream Sandwich will be the last Android OS?

  • Juan Romero

    @androidbrian i thik the nexus should sport the a15 instead!!!

  • Juan Romero

    but yes the thought of this is very exciting…finally carriers will be forced to drag out new android upgrades!

  • Deylune

    i will be looking forward to and probably buying one of the Next Google Nexus phones

  • Maximillion82

    I have my doubts that there will be 5 phones it’s more likely that there will be 5 devices eg. 2 phones, 2 tablets and 1 TV station.

  • GS3

    Samsung Galaxy S III will be the BEST phone on ANY Carrier for the next 2 Years….

    • Nickan Fayyazi

      Wrong. Samsung’s own Galaxy Note, which ships in October, has better specs, and the next Nexus phone(s) will probably top that too.

  • That’s the way to do it Google. Pure Android all the way.

  • John Phillips

    Yes . Pure Android, but please don’t limit you customers with storage. This makes no seance when it comes to Nexus phones, and the contenders who will buy them.