updated 07:32 am EDT, Wed August 22, 2012
Leak suggests multiple Nexus-branded handsets enroute
A purported list of upcoming devices set to arrive on Japan's NTT DoCoMo network suggests that the carrier expects to receive not only the Samsung Galaxy Nexus II, but also a new Sony Xperia Nexus as well as an LG Optimus Nexus. While not out of the question, it would mark the first time that Google has opened the Nexus branding to more than one handset manufacturer at the same time. Nexus-branded handsets have been reserved as Google's flagship handsets and run a 'Pure Google' experience.
The Android rumor mill has been hinting that Google may reveal up to five handsets with the Nexus branding to celebrate five years of the Android operating system, adding further credence to the appearance of the devices in NTT DoCoMo's systems. Being selected to have a device carry the Nexus branding has typically carried with it a certain amount of prestige, as in the past indeed only one manufacturer carried that distinction at a time. However, that change recently, when Google launched the Nexus 7 tablet which was made by Asus, while it continued to simultaneously sell the Nexus branded Samsung Galaxy device.
If true, the news will be a boon for Android fans, as it will significantly boost the choice of devices for users who prefer a clean installation of the OS without manufacturer skins. Besides the sometimes dubious alterations manufacturers make to the Android OS in the name of differentiation, it has also led to the significant fragmentation of Android. From a customer experience perspective, it has also meant that millions of customers face protracted delays in getting timely OS updates, if at all. If there are to be up to five Nexus smartphones on sale simultaneously, it will mean OEMs will have to differentiate through hardware and design, but updates would be much faster. [via Androidguys]