Is the Nexus 5 based on the LG G2?

by: Darcy LaCouveeAugust 12, 2013


With LG’s latest flagship, the LG G2 having been unveiled late last week in New York, tech pundits, curious consumers, and others are already beginning to think about the arrival of the highly anticipated Nexus 5, rumoured to land in our hands around October this year.

There were more than a few murmurings that we would be seeing a Google Play Edition of LG’s latest flagship, which was publicly denied by LG’s PR. He confirmed that LG did not have any plans to release a Google Edition of the LG G2, but added “… as of right now”. This suggests that, potentially, at some point in the future, we could be seeing a Google Play edition. Could this be the Nexus 5?

Technologically inclined consumers such as ourselves recognize that this Fall is Android’s 5th birthday, which traditionally coincides with a new release of Android – Android 5.0 Key Lime Pie. We’ve seen Google release new hardware alongside new software before, so I wouldn’t be surprised to see it happen this October. These facts only add fuel to the roaring fire of rumours.

Could the Nexus 5 be based on the LG G2?

nexus 4 galaxy nexus nexus 10 nexus 7 aa 6 1600

Possibly. The Nexus 4 was manufactured by LG, so we know that Google’s already friendly with the Korean firm. However, recently LG denied being a part of the Nexus 5 from earlier reports. This opens up the possibility of Google joining forces with another hardware firm such as Asus, Sony, or anyone of the myriad and keen partners that have already submitted their designs to Google in the hopes of being selected as a premium partner to produce the Nexus 5.

From a hardware standpoint, is it possible that the Nexus 5 may have its roots in the LG G2?

In terms of design, it appears somewhat likely. The Korean flagship features a unique, industrial and ergonomic design that, dependent on the success of the LG G2, may leave Google wanting to adopt it as the successor to the very successful Nexus 4. Though, it is worth mentioning that 500,000+ smartphones cannot be made overnight, or even within one or two months. The process, the research, the logistics, and all the R&D that goes into our mobile devices would blow your mind away. Manufacturers are already working on the Galaxy S5, iPhone 6, Moto X2, you name it – it’s all in the works, as these devices require substantial time to get designed, assembled, manufacturered and distributed (at minimum 6 months).

Look at that sexy, super thin bezel. Just look at it.

Look at that sexy, super thin bezel. Just look at it.

Editors note: In confidential talks with those ‘familiar with the matter’ regarding the original Nexus 4 debacle, they stated that “no one was in a position like LG to bring such great technology at such a compelling price point.” With this in mind, and considering the precedent set by Google with its original Nexus 4 roll out, it seems likely that LG could be selected again. Additionally, it was not LG that erred in the intial batch of Nexus 4’s that were produced; rather, Google’s initial orders were very small as they didn’t expect it to sell that well.

no one was in a position like LG to bring such great technology at such a compelling price point.

Getting back to the Nexus 5 rumors that we know of, it is unlikely that the G2’s hardware foundation could find its way into a Nexus device. Why you may ask? LG’s G2 has bleeding edge hardware. Because Google has opted for a very aggressive pricing strategy, it’s simply unlikely to have the same specs, as it would make the device prohibitively expensive.  If Google wants to have a repeat of the success of the Nexus 4, the Nexus 5 device will also need to be sold at a lower price point to continue to make the device accessible to a wider consumer base. These high specs therefore may not be available for the next device to keep manufacturing costs reasonable.

lg g2 qualcomm snapdragon 800 a (2)

Recently, Qualcomm has been the subject of much debate in the Android-o-sphere. Why? Qualcomm has been witholding proprietary elements of their stack, resulting in famous Android / Google personality JBQ ( see image on the right) leaving the Android Open Source Project. This is a big deal for Android fans and other proponents of open source software.

jbqQualcomm’s reluctance to release and publish factory images and driver binaries of recent Google devices such as the new Nexus 7, the Nexus 4 and the Nexus One doesn’t bode well for Android’s open future. Factory images are particularly important for users that want to restore their devices in case of damage to software. Driver binaries are used to restore hardware functionality.

How could this impact the Nexus 5? Will Qualcomm resolve the legal issue before October or will the new device face instability until the problem is rectified?

It’s highly unlikely that anyone but Qualcomm will be selected for the SoC’s simply because there is no other company that can even come close to Qualcomm’s offerings. They are the market leader, with over 40%+ of all mobile devices on sale now packing their technology inside.

Regardless, perhaps this is a moot point. At the end of the day, Google and the fortunate partner they select to manufacturer the Nexus 5 will be tasked with creating a cutting edge device that offers a premium user experience, and all at a very, very compelling price point.

Further to this, many influential persons in the Android space including Founder of Cyanongen, Steve Kondik, and others have alluded to the fact that increasingly, there is less necessity to ‘root’ Android devices. Further to this, rooting still remains a pursuit of a very small percentage of Android users. Our math suggests that roughly 4-5% of Android users root their devices. The fact remains that our mobile devices, and in particular, those that are powered by Android, are among the most versatile, customizable, and flexible of all the mobile platforms available, regardless of whether they have been rooted or not.

Nexus 7

Snapdragon 600, the new baseline for the Nexus series?

At the end of the day, the Nexus 5 is likely to have a combination of what the new Nexus 7 is packing, hardware wise. This would lead us to believe that it will feature a 1080p display, and a Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 SoC. Who will manufacturer it? Only time will tell. One thing is for sure – a lot of people are very, very keen to get their hands on one.

Google and its manufacturing partner of choice better be ready.

And how about you? Would you care if the Nexus 5 doesn’t feature the latest and greatest specs? What price point are you looking for? How about having it be available outside of the USA this time? Let us know down below!

  • I want the QSD800, 5″1080p and a big battery, that’s the most important thing

    • Mr Nexus

      Exactly. Will rather pay a few bucks more to get the next gen processor(QSD800) rather than the albeit fast, but last gen processor(QSD600)

  • xel

    i really hope that the g2 won’t be the base for the new nexus. it’s just too large, not comfortable at all. smartphone growth need to stop, and we need proper medium-sized phones

    • poop

      Apologies if you have, but have you actually held a G2?

      • newsjunkieintl

        No, he hasn’t as it’s not been released yet anywhere, even in South Korea. :)

  • RaptorOO7

    Ok, so if it is so what. Meh, LG.

    • SeraZR™

      exactly, dunno why people prefer LG sooo much -_- -_-

      • newsjunkieintl

        Because the Nexus 4 was a winner and the LG G2 is FANTASTIC.

      • G2forme

        ANSWE IS no one was in a position like LG to bring such great technology at such a compelling price point. –
        well said Android Authority.

        ENOUGH SAID……….
        See more at:

  • Nicktrance

    It definitely has the sleek, clean nexus look already

    • jc_rodimus

      I wondered if one of the reasons the g2 has on screen controls and no sd card was to make the transition to the nexus 5 easier. Like you said, the g2 already looks like a nexus

  • Antony Greenman

    $300-400 dollars, 32 GB internal storage, anything 4.7″ or 5″ would be fine. As long as it’s snappy, has above average camera and above average battery I’m sold!

  • Frank

    So no mention of the rumor that Motorola we be making the next nexus phone ?

    • Rex

      The rumors that have surfaced thus far aren’t that credible. Let’s wait and see – surely more leaks are coming soon :)

      • Jack3D

        Though what we know of Moto’s next few devices point to similar processing subsystem as the Nexus 7. Snapdragon S4 Pro used in the MotoX and Droids, is just a dual-core version of the Snapdragon 600.

        Just sayin’…

  • I’d like new Nexus 4 (2013) and a Nexus 5. Aaaaaand go!

    • OMGgary

      That might be what happens this year. Rumours pointing to LG G2 as base for a Nexus and rumours pointing to a Nexus phone from Motorola could both be correct.
      If so then my guess would be:
      G2 to Nexus 5 (~5.2″, 1080p, Snap 800, maybe selling for $400+
      Moto to Nexus 4 (2013) (~4.5″, 720p, something custom like the X8, maybe selling for $300+)

    • newsjunkieintl

      It’s not called Nexus 4 because it’s a 4″ screen. It’s called Nexus 4 because it’s the 4th Nexus. Therefore, there will NOT be a “2013” Nexus 4″. Only a Nexus 5.

      The Nexus phones ALWAYS have updated specs and features reflecting current top tier Androids. Thus, it’s not the Nexus 4.2 — it’s simply the Nexus 5.

      * Nexus 1 (Nexus One): 3.7″ screen

      * Nexus 2 (Nexus S): 4.0″ screen

      * Nexus 3 (Galaxy Nexus): 4.65″ (720p) screen, dual core

      * Nexus 4 (Nexus 4): 4.7″ (720p) screen, quad core

      Nexus 5: 5.0″ – 5.2″ (1080p) screen, quad core

      Nexus always goes with the current gen top tier Android specs already on the market, including screen size. They aren’t like Apple and try to force their laggard standards down your throat — no iPhone sold yet even has HD resolution, only 640p and Apple had to dragged kicking and screaming to a 4″ display.

      Look at the new LG G2 and you will see what would be the perfect “Nexus” phone: 5.2″, 1080p, screaming quad core Snapdragon 800 with GPU which has its own RAM to make it even faster. Sony is releasing a Xperia Homani, with similar specs (except 5″, instead of 5.2) in September. Samsung is releasing an updated S4 this fall, also with the Snapdragon 800 (and has 5″).

      THAT is the standard and that is what the Nexus 5 should have, unless Google fails.

    • Mr Nexus

      WTF is the Nexus 4 (2013), do you even understand the Nexus numbering system?

      • Nexus 7 is being referred to that way. Wasn’t my idea :-)

  • bozzykid

    I was planning on moving from the Nexus 4 to the next Nexus phone. But if it is 5.2 inches, then I will go with the Moto X. No way would I want a screen that large.

    • newsjunkieintl

      Then how about at least 5″? 5″ is the new 4″ from a couple of years ago.
      Nexus 1: 3.7″
      Nexus 2: 4.0″
      Nexus 3: 4.65″
      Nexus 4: 4.7″
      Nexus 5: at least 5.0″.

      • N4go

        Do you even know what you’re talking about? There are no such things as Nexus 2 and Nexus 3! The Nexus One was named after the HTC One series. The Nexus 4 is named for it’s rounded off 4.7″ screen size. And to everyone complaining, if there will be a Nexus 5 of course is going to have a >=5″ screen size. Its the naming scheme of curren nexuses.

        • End in sight


        • Joshua Hill

          The Nexus 3 was a Galaxy Nexus, basically a SGS2 with a slightly bigger screen. Not sure what device the Nexus 2 was based off. The OP attempted to simplify things buy calling the Nexus’ 1 – 5 in the order they were/will be released. I say simplified because apparently you don’t know enough about what you are talking about and it has caused some confusion with you.

          • N4go

            Bitch please, it certainly didn’t cause confusion to me! I know cause I have a Nexus S (the second nexus which you didn’t know of) and Nexus 4. He’s confusing the people as if the Nexuses were named in succession to each other – until the 2018 Nexus phone will be called a Nexus 10.

        • newsjunkieintl

          I was listing the Nexus phones in the order they were released. For instance, the Nexus 3 is the 3rd generation Nexus phone. It was formally called the Galaxy Nexus in MOST countries but actually had different names in other countries. (In Brazil it was called the Galaxy X.) Simpler to say Nexus 3. Everybody but YOU understood. :)

          My real point was the screen size gets larger with every Nexus. Did you COMPREHEND THAT? And that the name Nexus 4 had NOTHING TO DO WITH SCREEN SIZE. It’s the 4th Generation Nexus. Otherwise the Nexus 2 and Nexus 3 would have been called that name, as the Nexus 4 was actually the third Nexus phone with a 4″ screen or larger. It was the Nexus 4 because it was simply the 4th generation Nexus. 5th GEN Nexus coming up in 3 months.

      • Noel

        Yes and I hope it is a very compact 5” with minimal bezel all around…the front should be mostly all screen.

  • Edwin

    I think the Moto X shows a clear direction for smartphone sizes in the future and that is a “medium-sized” screen with a small design that will actually feel like having a phone in your pocket. If the Nexus 5 is going to have the 5.2″ screen of the G2, then I hope there’ll be a new redesigned Nexus 4 with a better camera and slightly updated specs. I don’t want the next Nexus to be another giant phone.

    • newsjunkieintl

      5″, 5.2″ is NOT a giant phone. I’ve owned a 4.65″ 720p Galaxy Nexus for the past year and I am more than ready to upgrade to a better, only slightly larger screen.

  • poop

    Second sentence in the editor’s note:
    “With this in mind, and considering the precedent set by Google with it’s original Nexus 4 roll out, […]”

    Shouldn’t that be “its”?

  • newsjunkieintl

    LG never said they weren’t making the Nexus 5. A VP’s statement was mistranslated — which LG immediately refuted — but they can’t say they ARE or ARE NOT making the Nexus 5 as it’s a top secret project. In the clarification, they couldn’t clarify much… So, people keep quoting the original mistranslation, which LG says is WRONG.

    Furthermore, LG says they are not making a Google Edition of the G2 (like the Galaxy S4 and HTC One), which is TOTALLY DIFFERENT from having a Nexus 5 BASED on the G2. Come on, people, read between the lines.

    Plus South Korean newspaper Daum has been getting steady leaks all year from LG sources that YES, there’s a dual development project with the G2/Nexus 5.

  • DarthZoolander

    no way the nexus 5 will have a snapdragon 600. That would be an extremely small upgrade from the current Nexus… additionally, the SOC is one of the least expensive components of a device

    • skynet11

      My thoughts exactly.

  • mike

    Anything in between 4.3 – 4.8 inch would be perfect, 5 inch and above is too big. The g2 in my opinion has a bezel too small and the volume control on the back is just stupid.
    So 1080p screen, snapdragon 600 or better, 10+ mp camera, long battery life and a price point at no more than £600 would be great!

    • Clarkkent113

      Highly disagree. Anything below 4.7″ screen is too small.

      I own a Note 2 and I’m looking to downgrade my screen size, but not by THAT much. The ideal smartphone size is 4.8″ – 5.3″ screen with small bezels

      • newsjunkieintl

        Agreed. My wife and I own two 4.65″ 720p Galaxy Nexus and after a year, I can say they shrink with repeated use. :) Too small. I want at least 5″, even 5.2″ 1080p.

    • Chris

      You’re in absolute minority. 4.3 is tiny now, look at the direction the market is going. Not enough screen real estate. And, a bezel too small on a 5.2″ screen? I think that’s what they are aiming for! And if you’re expecting a nexus to cost anywhere near £600, firstly, you’re mental. But if it did, I’d expect better than SD600…

  • Lisandro O Oocks

    I bet this year won’t have a new Nexus other than the Google edition ones, and the one Nexus 4 which actually made it to the ppl in 2013, and the White Nexus 4. Basically, it’s too early to be speculating on what the Nexus 5 will look like.

  • skynet11

    You forget that the Nexus 4 had the latest and greatest CPU at the time of its release last year. The Optimus G had one of the newest, most powerful mobile processors in the world in the Snapdragon S4 Pro. The only other processor in its league was the Exynos 5250 used in the Nexus 10. There’s no reason to believe that Google couldn’t pull off an affordable 2013 Nexus phone with a Snapdragon 800.

  • TT

    F**k, please no LG for next Nexus.

  • Markus Ressel

    Even though I love Nexus devices I couldn’t resist and preordered a G2. Too damn good specs and imo the button design could be pretty useful.
    I really hope there will be some kind of Play Edition to push custom roms, but since android is that customizable I think I could live without them.

  • Kris

    I hope I can still get a Nexus 4 if the Nexus 5 comes out with a 5.2 inch display and that stupid volume button on the back. I bought the S4 when I left Verizon to go to AT&T and I wouldn’t have bought a phone with 5 inch display except that the phone is the exact same size as my old S3. I went to AT&T so that I could buy unlocked Nexus phones but I’ve been holding off on the Nexus 4 due to the 5 release being within a couple of months. I hope it turns out to be worth the wait or I will just get the Nexus 4. I think the $299 -$349 price point is unbeatable for such a great phone. Hope they stay in that ballpark with the N5. That’s my 2 cents.

  • 26

    I want N5 based on G2.

  • jjordan

    I’m curious as to what your opinions of these leaked specs are darcy…its 1 thing to wrote about em, but what do you think? Being a huge note 2 fan ate you disappointed by any of these leaks

  • Aaron Saellam

    I would love to see a Moto built Nexus, but there’s one problem with that. How is Moto going to release a phone that’s as good as or slightly better than the X for less than $400. There was a lot of skepticism over the X’s specs before it came out, but I think that the X8 platform is going to change the way manufacturers design phones. I really thought that the Moto X was going to be the next Nexus, and it really should have been priced under $400. Oh well, time will tell.

  • whispy_snippet

    I’d love to see a Nexus 5 from either HTC or Sony with elegant, understated industrial design. The processor doesn’t matter to me so long as it can run things with buttery fluidity. Real world performance is everything – not benchmarks. I’d also like killer battery life (ala Moto X) and a decent camera. Just once it would be great to get a proper snapper on a Nexus device. The screen is important but it doesn’t have to be 1080p. I’d like a 4.7 inch (or thereabouts) screen at 720p but with class leading colour reproduction, deep blacks, snow whites and top notch viewing angles. In other words, give us a beautiful image but don’t sacrifice battery life for unnecessarily high pixel density.

    But above all else, I want (hope) Android 5.0 knocks our socks off. In the end, it’s all about the software.

  • Pack RATT

    5inch 1080p, 32gb, good battery, 13mp at least, at least as fast as the Samsung galaxy s4. And please no LG. I will take Sony, Motorola or Asus. In that order. Otherwise I will be keeping the note 2 for another year. I’ll pay for it Google! Just make it speedy and throw some kickass hardware in there!

    • Brody Boswell

      Asus over lg????? Wut I think Samsung should be on the list instead the gnex was great

  • End in sight

    Sony. $300 off contract. That’s all I care about.

  • Ruz

    400 to 500 unlocked and globally supported network connectivity, i would like it Sony or Asus made as Sony has good distribution network. Pls this time we want expendable memory, removable battery and dual sim too

  • Ivan Budiutama

    Hardware spec is very flexible, as long as the software is well optimized. My Galaxy Nexus barely got any restart or the necessary to hard reset, compares to even the newest S4 or Z. Give the next Nexus (whatever the name is) some 32 GB Internal Storage, definitely will get one.

  • I recently bought a Nexus 4 so I will probably change my phone with the Nexus “6” (or Nexus of X generation lol): for the Nexus 5 I hope in a improved battery, 3 GB Ram and Snapdragon 800 ( but probably they’ll choose the 600) but I’ll pay more attention to Android 5.0 :D

  • ks

    I’d be happy if the nexus 5 was a nexus 4 with LTE and better battery life

  • István Török

    I want the Moto X design for my Nexus 5. I don’t want a 5″ display or anything beyond the current size of the Nexus phone. The innards I don’t really care about anymore because we’ve passed the threshold of comfortably fast hardware long ago.

    • Sirus Laia

      I totally agree with you. I’m looking forward to seeing flagship devices follow Moto X’s example. After 3 years being an early adopter of new pieces of hardware and constantly flashing different ROMs I’m tired. I want to have a phone with the stability and performance of iOS but with the innovation and flexibility of Android.

      • G2forme

        ANSWE IS no one was in a position like LG to bring such great technology at such a compelling price point. –
        well said Android Authority.

        no more argue…

        See more at:

    • newsjunkieintl

      Then, go buy a 2012 Nexus 4 RIGHT NOW for $350. Because it has the same 4.7″ 720p screen the Moto X has. It should be fast enough for you. You have about 3 months to buy it before it disappears from the Google Play market.

      As for me, I want at least 5″, 1080p, and quad core Snapdragon 800 on my 2013 Nexus 5, thank you very much.

      • István Török

        I already OWN a Nexus 4. Not happy with the glass back and the build quality (creaking movement in the plastic near the usb port.)

  • Luka Mlinar

    We don’t even know who’s making it yet.

  • Bone

    The SD800/Adreno 330 shouldn’t really cost more than the S4 Pro/Adreno 320 a year ago, and the Nexus 4 too copied the actual G flagship spec sheet.

    It WILL back the SD800 mark my words, and by November past a dozen SD800 releases, it won’t even be anything special.

  • Chris

    I’m not overly fussed about who makes it. LG, Motorola, Sony, Asus, it doesn’t really matter. I’d like a screen around 5″, not necessarily 1080p if it is going to reduce battery life unnecessarily, which it will. As long as it is crisp like the nexus 4. I don’t think the latest and greatest processor is the most important thing as long as it runs smoothly and quickly. Look at the moto x. The thing I most want to see is a removable battery. Battery life on all these phones is a joke. No good being a lightening quick, amazing experience, if it’ll run out of juice before the end of the day! Even the moto x, with it’s impressive battery life, would probably still run out within a day’s heavy use. Price-wise, anything near the Nexus 4 would be great.

  • smokebomb

    I just bought an Asus android tablet. Maybe Asus is in the back pocket to make the nexus 5.

  • Simon Belmont

    I’d gladly pay more than what the Nexus 4 cost to have a Snapdragon 800 and 32GB of internal storage in the Nexus 5. Don’t forget the Snapdragon S4 Pro in the Nexus 4 was the top of the line SoC for a few months. Google should do another top of the line SoC. Come on, Google, make it come true, please.

    If it’s LG again, I hope they don’t make it glass backed this time. I have to say, even though my Galaxy Nexus is plastic, it feels very sturdy and well put together.

  • vcarvega

    I would be okay with a Snapdragon 600 in the Nexus 5… But I do hope that Google will go high end on the Nexus 10 & include a Snapdragon 800.

  • george

    Most probable : Nexus5 will indeed be the G2 without LG bloatware and only 16GB (pushing users to the cloud). And will cost more than 399$.
    My personal fantasy ( will not happen): Google partners with a chinese manufacturer with big production capacity like Lenovo. Selling the new nexus unlocked , dual sim, dual standby. No bloatware. Setting price at 149-179$. Selling external battery for 25$ more. No contract. Complete disruption of the operator business model in 200 countries.
    Complete disruption of mid end to high end devices.
    Quality concerns? Any trouble ? Original buyer gets a replacement , no questions asked. Could outsell all the rest and still be profitable.
    Cant see many people still go for models costing 300% more.

  • G2forme

    ANSWE IS no one was in a position like LG to bring such great technology at such a compelling price point. –
    well said Android Authority.

    See more at:

  • medo

    I really hope it’s at least 5″2 inches Since ‘ want to switch from note 2 to nexus 5.

  • alfreduran

    Hi! Well, I don’t care the manufacturer, I want a Nexus device with a 32 or 64Gb internal storage and an excellent camera and screen. Great article and best regards! :)