Oct 25, 2013

Hello Friends,

With high-end specifications and the latest version of Android, there have always been plenty of reasons to covet Google's Nexus smartphones. The fact they get latest updates first and are always incredibly well priced certainly helps out too.

Now that the Google Nexus 4 is essentially sold out here in the UK, and beginning to look a little outdated compared with the likes of Samsung's Galaxy S4, the HTC One and Sony's Xperia Z1, it's basically common knowledge that Google is looking to launch a successor.

We can't be too far from an official reveal now, so we've gathered all the news, rumours and leaks in one place to give you an idea what to expect from Google's upcoming flagship smartphone.


GOOGLE NEXUS 5 MANUFACTURER




Like all of Google's own-brand products, the Nexus 5 will be manufactured by a partner rather than the company itself. Although companies including Asus and Samsung were rumoured to be on the shortlist, LG was widely expected to handle manufacturing duties as it had done previously with the Nexus 4.

GOOGLE NEXUS 5 NAME

Seeing as Google recently refreshed the Nexus 7 with a 2013 model that shares the same name, there was originally some speculation that the company would do the same with its smartphone. However, because the number relates directly to screen size, rumours of a larger screen naturally introduced a new name too - hence Nexus 5.

GOOGLE NEXUS 5 SPECIFICATIONS

When a detailed service manual got leaked online last week, we got a near complete list of Nexus 5 specifications. Considering LG's lawyers had the manual pulled shortly after it appeared, it's almost certainly accurate, although naturally it is still possible for things to change at the last minute. Even so, this sneak peek suggests the Nexus 5 will be something of a smartphone powerhouse.
According to the leaked information, the Nexus 5 will have a 5.2in OLED display with a Full HD, 1,920x1,080 resolution. It will have a quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 System-on-Chip (SoC) running at 2.3GHz, paired with 3GB of PDDR3 memory. Phones will be available in 16GB, 32GB or 64GB of internal storage.

These components are virtually identical to LG's own G2 smartphone, but the Nexus 5 will almost certainly not use the G2's rear-facing buttons - more on design below.

The high-end internals were seemingly confirmed by a set of leaked benchmark results, which put the Nexus 5 among the very best Android smartphones when it comes to performance.

An eight megapixel camera sensor with optical image stabilisation (OIS) was mentioned in the service manual, along with a 1.3-megapixel front-facing webcam. The Nexus 5 may also get a smart GPS-assisted camera module. According to a recent Google patent filing, the Nexus 5 could tie the camera's settings to the GPS location to help you shoot better pictures.

According to the patent, the camera is aware of its location and the current weather conditions. Combined with the accelerometer, light sensor and temperature sensor, it could fine-tune settings automatically to produce the best results. Whether this is software or hardware-based remains to be seen - if it's done in software it could be rolled out as part of Android 4.4 KitKat, but if it uses dedicated hardware it could be limited to the Nexus range.

GOOGLE NEXUS 5 DESIGN

We got a cheeky first glimpse of the Nexus 5 when Google revealed its Android 4.4 KitKat statue in front of the company headquarters. A Google employee was holding a Nexus smartphone that clearly wasn't the Nexus 4.




Google didn't do a very good job keeping it hidden, as it was spotted again a few weeks later in a US bar. The handset, which was apparently left charging unsupervised by a Google employee, has the same horizontal Nexus branding, oversized camera lens and small LG logo on the rear.

A further leak came courtesy of the MacRumours forum, where user Weespeed posted the above image along with some early impressions of the device. Apparently the rear cover has a similar feel to the 2013 Nexus 7 tablet and feels smaller than LG's own G2, but has a merely "Ok" display that doesn't impress as much as Samsung's Galaxy Note 3 phablet.

When it comes to colour, we initially thought the Nexus 5 would only come in black, but it appears that a white model may also be on the cards. The latest set of leaked images, courtesy of Korean site underkg, don't show the handset itself but instead reveal the packaging. On it, the Nexus 5 is clearly shown with a white rear panel. Unlike other white phones, like Samsung's Galaxy S4, it appears to keep the black front panel of its darker brother.

ANDROID 4.4 KITKAT

Almost all Nexus devices launch with a brand-new version of Android, and now that Google has signed a deal with Nestle to call version 4.4 KitKat it seems almost certain that the Nexus 5 will be the debut device for the updated OS.

Android 4.4 KitKat is still very much under wraps at Google, but that hasn't stopped several purported screenshots from appearing online. 9to5Google has several images which apparently show redesigned stock apps including Messages and the phone dialler, as well as a new, flatter user interface that looks more than a little like Apple's iOS 7.


The images are a little dubious because they show inconsistencies in the menu and notification bars - although Google hasn't exactly stayed consistent when it comes to design in the past, the odd use of transparency leads us to think these are full screen mock-ups, rather than actual applications. Even so, they could mirror Google's intended updates to its stock Android apps.

Other features haven't been leaked yet, but further performance tweaks and an update to the user interface should be on the way.

GOOGLE NEXUS 5 RELEASE DATE

At the beginning of the year, many were expecting Google to reveal a new Nexus alongside the latest version of Android at its annual IO conference. The may event came and went without either product making an appearance, however, as did the launch of the refreshed Nexus 7 tablet.
The 14th of October was widely tipped as a possible launch date, which would be roughly one year after the Nexus 4 made its October 2012 debut, but the latest rumours have suggested a one-day delay and an October 15th reveal.

GOOGLE NEXUS 5 PRICE

We've now received the first official price news, courtesy of a Play Store leak by Google itself. The 16GB model will cost $349 in the US, which is roughly £215 before taxes and VAT here in the UK.
When Google launched the new Nexus 7 at a higher price than the 2012 original, all rumours that the Nexus 4's successor would match its incredibly low price went out the window. With such high-end internals mentioned in numerous leaks, the smart money would have been on the Nexus 5 costing significantly more than the Nexus 4. Rumours from PhoneArena suggested the 16GB model would cost $299 while the 32GB version will cost $399. That's roughly £180 and £250 respectively, albeit before taxes and VAT.

We still don't know UK prices, or how much the 32GB model will cost in the US - that will have to wait until Google makes the Nexus 5 official, or we get another leak before the announcement.

We'll know for sure when Google makes the Nexus 5 official, so be sure to check back next week to see if the rumours were true.


SOURCE: www.expertreviews.co.uk


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