updated 12:05 pm EDT, Tue August 9, 2011
Ice Cream Sandwich rumored early to fight Apple
A rumor floated Tuesday claimed that the first devices using Google's Ice Cream Sandwich, possibly called Android 4, were being moved up to counter Apple. The first round would arrive in October as Google was keen to avoid creating too much of a gap between its new wave and an iPhone 5 launch in October or September. The BGR tip maintained that Google is concerned the iPhone 5 would be the only model in the limelight at the time.
The company might be worried most of all about getting the first ICS devices out before November. The month represents the two-year anniversary of the original Motorola Droid, the first truly popular Android phone and widely considered the spark for Android's growth worldwide. Many early adopters will have the option of switching phones or carriers completely penalty-free and will have their first real chances at jumping to an iPhone.
Some of the first Verizon iPhone 4 buyers were Droid owners and even those with the Droid X. The figures may go up as many Verizon subscribers are known to be holding off until the iPhone 5 before they buy in. Signs have also emerged of iPhones for Sprint and T-Mobile that would eliminate Android's 'safe' zones in the US.
Regardless of the accuracy, much is riding on Ice Cream Sandwich for Google. The OS will be the first time the interface from Honeycomb comes to phones and will be a test of whether users will still be receptive.