updated 05:50 pm EDT, Fri November 5, 2010
Samsung and Google said hurt by major hardware bug
Samsung's repeatedly rumored Google halo phone, still informally known as the "Nexus Two," may still be on but may have been hit by a major setback. Tips on Friday repeated beliefs that it wouldn't be at the November 8 event but was originally to have been launched close to that date. Employee testing reportedly found a "serious hardware issue" shortly before release, TechCrunch said.
The design is still poised to be special as it would not only be an early phone running Gingerbread (Android 2.3) but one of the few phones running an unaltered version of Android. Most phone makers have insisted on customizing Android to differentiate their hardware but have frequently set the platform back, either reducing the performance of the phone or delaying upgrades by months. Google's Nexus One was the first device to get Android 2.2, as early as May, where only 36 percent of all Android phones are using the latest version of the code.
Typically, the majority of iPhone owners are on the latest iOS build within weeks.
Google has denied Nexus sequels while Samsung has rejected the rumors. The companies could nonetheless plausibly deny Nexus Two rumors as long as Samsung's phone still followed a traditional carrier sales model, where it reached stores.
Most of Android's rapid share gains in the past year have come from flagship phones, but usually ones attached to specific carriers. Samsung has its Galaxy S phones on virtually all major US carriers but hasn't fared as well as some Android rivals in the US and the iPhone worldwide.