Thanks to a NenaMark benchmark on their own site, someone managed to capture a screenshot of a Galaxy Nexus device featuring a PowerVR SGX544 GPU, much like a TI OMAP 4470 chip would have. Although, it has never happened before for Google to release a “Plus” version of their Nexus, they did release a “4G” version of the Nexus S. Also, seeing how Samsung is on a spree of making “Plus” versions of all their older phones, could it be that there’s an actual upgraded Galaxy Nexus device on the horizon?
I would take these rumors with a huge grain of salt, because it’s still possible the benchmark was spoofed (it also appears a lot of people are overclocking their CPU’s), but what if Samsung/Google are actually going to upgrade the Galaxy Nexus? And why would they do that anyway?
First of all, I’m pretty sure this will upset many Galaxy Nexus owners, because they will feel as if they got the short end of the stick and just bought the “weaker” version. This is why, although I could agree with “Plus” versions of phones, it would have to be at least 6 months after the release of the original version. Otherwise the original buyers might hate the company for it.
I think a Plus version is fine, as long as it actually comes with significant upgrades in every way: processor, display, storage, RAM, and last but not least, the OS version (phone design should probably stay mostly the same, to recognize it). Google is already on a 2-per-year major Android versions cadence, so I could see how a “Plus” version can serve as a mid-life kicker for the original device, that also comes with Google’s latest and greatest major Android upgrade. Of course, this doesn’t mean in any way that the manufacturers can slack off and not release an update for the original version as soon as possible.
What I don’t like though, is when they release a new phone 3 months later, it barely has anything changed other than a 20% faster CPU, and comes with the exact same version as the original. What’s the point of that? It might give a short boost to their sales, but it will get them fewer sales in the future if their customers start feeling ripped off.
Again, I think this could be just a benchmark spoof, because even though it says SGX544, it’s not as powerful as it should be compared to an OMAP 4460 GPU, and the CPU is also way underclocked compared to what an OMAP 4470 should have (1.8 Ghz). So don’t get too worked up about it until we have more official news.