The second half of the year is going to bring us some amazing smartphones. Among the most anticipated announcements are those related to Google’s popular Nexus series. Rumors tend to start blazing through the internet very early on, and this year is not the exception.
It is no surprise to see the industry having such a high regard for the Nexus line-up. These are, after all, Google’s demonstration of where they want Android to go. Quality hardware, a pure Google experience and timely updates have always been the Nexus stamp, which has helped the brand gain a major follower base.
Where does Google want to take the most popular mobile operating system now? What will the upcoming Nexus device(s) be like? We have gathered plenty of (unofficial) details to share, so let’s dig right into the goods.
This article will continue to be updated as new information begins emerging. Bookmark this page and keep checking it if you want to stay in the loop! The article will also be pushed to the front of our home page whenever it’s edited.
LG Nexus 5X?
The Nexus 6 offered performance and specs without compromises, but the phone wasn’t exactly for everyone, due to one main reason. Its massive 5.96-inch screen and gargantuan body will definitely make it an uncomfortable phone to bear, especially for those who have smaller hands. This forced Nexus fans to stick with an older-generation handset if they wanted to have a traditionally sized phone.
Google may be onto something this year. Recent rumors suggest there will be a couple Nexus phones launched this year. One of them would be manufactured by LG and reportedly resemble the phone maker’s Nexus 5. In fact, some believe the new phone could be a direct successor, a Nexus 5 (2015) if you will.
LG’s Nexus device is reportedly codenamed Bullhead and is rumored to come with a Snapdragon 808 processor, a 5.2-inch display and a 2700 mAh battery. So far this is all we know about this product, but a new image does at least give us a look at what is allegedly the next-gen version of the LG Nexus:
After weeks of rumors, more images of the LG Nexus 5X started surfacing, including some from UnderKG and Android Pit. We even got a good idea of the phone’s looks when the guys from Droid Life came across some case renders. All leaks go in line with each other, so it’s safe to assume this is how the phone will look. Let’s take a look at the images.
Reports of a Huawei Nexus have been making the rounds for a while, and the good news is these reports come from multiple sources, including some highly reliable ones. So while LG’s Nexus is shrouded in mystery, we can be almost totally confident that Huawei and Google will launch a Nexus phone this year, and we also have a pretty good idea of what to expect. Here’s the rundown.
We have seen or heard very few details on what this Huawei-made Nexus phone could look like, but we can tell you one thing – it will be large. Rumors suggest the phone’s screen will measure 5.7-inches, which just so happens to be the same screen size as the Samsung Galaxy Note 4.
According to @evleaks, the Huawei Nexus will feature a metallic construction and a fingerprint sensor. In other words, it’s rough outline may be pretty similar to the Mate series. In fact, there’s a good chance the Mate 9 (due this fall) will contain hints at what to expect from the Google-branded device.
In addition, some recent renders have shown what both the Huawei and LG Nexus devices could look like. These come from @OnLeaks, which is definitely a source with a good history on rumors, but we still can’t quite confirm these.
@OnLeaks also mentions the phone should measure 159.4 x 78.3 x 6.6/8.5 mm and sport front-facing dual speakers.
Furthermore, a video said to be showcasing the upcoming Huawei Nexus showed up online. As with all of this information, we can’t promise this is the real deal, but you can check out the video to see for yourself.
New images showed up, some in disguise (covered with a case), later on. It’s hard to see it all, but we did manage to get a look at the overall form factor and some parts of the phone. The most interesting being the USB-C port.
As we mentioned above, the upcoming Huawei Nexus smartphone should come with a sizable 5.7-inch panel. What we didn’t tell you was that, like the Nexus 6, the new Nexus should also feature a QHD resolution display (2560x1440p). This entails the panel will have a pixel density of 515 pixels per inch.
Pixels should be packed in a little tighter than in the Nexus 6, due to the slight size difference, but it’s likely not a very noticeable upgrade.
Specifications & hardware
The little evidence we have tells us this phone should be quite powerful. While the new LG Nexus is expected to go with the slightly sub-par (yet still capable) Snapdragon 808 chip, Huawei is not skimping out on performance one bit.
Most rumors state the new Huawei handset will come with a Snapdragon 810 chipset. Evan Blass (@evleaks) claims it will pack a Snapdragon 820 SoC, so it will likely be one of those two. Regardless of the outcome, Huawei making a move to Qualcomm would represent a significant change, as they have stayed exclusive to their very own Kirin processors so far. Maybe this is one of the conditions for working with Google? After all, while Google is known to have worked with more exotic processors in the past (like Texas Instruments and Nvidia), the processor manufacturer has a huge role in ensuring support and timely updates through the lifetime of a device. Perhaps Huawei’s Kirin is just too risky for Google from this perspective?
Rumored hardware specifications on the LG Nexus 5X include a Snapdragon 808, a 5.2-inch 2K display, 3 GB of RAM, a 13 MP IMX278 processor and a fingerprint sensor. A later report then corroborated the fingerprint reader would also be coming to the LG device, and we even got a hold of some case images that may confirm this rumor. This would make total sense, as Google announced at Google IO that Android M is to integrate native support for fingerprint readers. This will enable users to make purchases on the Google Play Store, unlock devices, protect sensitive data and more.
It is also said both new Nexus phones will come with USB-C on board, which Google already adopted for the new Chromebook Pixel and hinted at for future Android smartphones. As for microSD, while Android M has gotten a bit friendlier to external storage, we would be very surprised if Google reversed its stance and included a microSD slot on a Nexus device.
The upcoming Nexus devices’ cameras may be the subject we have the least information on. We have heard some rumors say the LG Nexus successor will come with a dual-camera setup, similar to the in the HTC One series. In addition, some believe Huawei’s Nexus phone could be based on the Huawei Honor 6 Plus, which also happens to sport a couple cameras in the back.
Many would consider this a gimmick, as its most popular functions are to distinguish distance and allow for digitally applied bokeh effects (otherwise known as “blurry background”). While that may be a valid argument, I wouldn’t discard the possibility of Google adopting this dual-camera technique. The Mountain View-based company has been playing around with similar technology in Project Tango, and they do appear to be well-invested in the concept.
If the LG Nexus rumor winds up being true, we do hope the Korean manufacturer makes life good by implementing the LG G4’s camera. Nexus phones are not exactly known for having exceptional shooters (Nexus 6 was better), so it would definitely be a welcomed addition.
Getting back to the Huawei Nexus, camera info is completely absent. With the implementation of a superior Camera API in Lollipop, the conditions are set for a truly great camera experience, provided Google and Huawei won’t skimp on hardware. Unfortunately, that happened before, so it remains to be seen whether the Huawei Nexus will buck the trend.
Nexus phones characterize themselves by staying true to the Pure Google experience; we have no doubt this will also be the case with the new Nexus phone(s). Furthermore, we also know the next-generation Nexus handsets should be the first to launch with Android M, Google’s new version of their mobile OS.
Improvements over Lollipop include granular permissions, custom Chrome tabs, battery improvements, USB-C compatibility, app state backup and native biometric support. You can see a detailed explanation of all Android M features in our announcement post, as well as our detailed “Diving into Android M” article series.
Pricing and release date
Evan Blass’ sources previously stated these phones should ship in Q4, while The Information’s insiders suggested it would be in “the Fall”. Pricing-wise, some think the Huawei Nexus will be more upscale, due to the top specs and metal constructions, while LG’s Nexus could follow in the tracks of the popular Nexus 5. All of this was made more clear when our own sources told us the LG Nexus 5X would be $50 more than the past generation Nexus 5. This likely means the device will start at $400. We were also informed about a possible September 29th launch. This was still a rumor until September 19th, when Google announced they were actually going to have an event on the 29th. Not much of a doubt left there, right?
2015 is looking to be a great year for Google. If most of this information proves to be true, the new Nexus products will be the phones to beat – especially Huawei’s. As we mentioned above: don’t forget to keep it tuned to Android Authority and this specific article, as it will continue to get updates as soon as new information emerges.
For now, let’s just hit the comments and share our thoughts on these rumors. What would you like to see in the new Nexus phones? Are you signing up for any of them? Many of you are probably happy a normal-sized Nexus phone is likely to hit the market again!