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Summary:

Google’s third flagship Android phone, code-named the Nexus Prime, is expected to launch next week. Thursday a list of believeable specifications surfaced. The phone could be a Verizon exclusive in the U.S., explaining why the carrier opted to pass on Samsung’s Galaxy S II: no LTE.

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The unveiling of Google’s third Android flagship phone is expected to take place at next week’s CTIA trade event, but leaked specifications were reported on Thursday. The Boy Genius Report notes that the Google Nexus Prime made by Samsung will be a Verizon exclusive in the U.S. and will showcase a large, high-resolution touchscreen display with curved glass.

Here’s a listing of the phone’s alleged features, most of which sound likely to me:

  • Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich
  • 4.65-inch 1280 x 720-pixel Super AMOLED HD with curved glass
  • TI OMAP 4460 dual-core Cortex A9 processor clocked at 1.2 GHz
  • 1 GB of RAM, 32 GB of internal storage
  • 5 megapixel rear camera with 1080p video capture, 1.3 megapixel front facing camera
  • LTE / HSPA mobile broadband
  • Wi-Fi a/b/g/n, NFC support

Google typically partners with a hardware manufacturer to design the Nexus phone as a cutting-edge device or reference design; it did so first with the Nexus One and later the Nexus S. The Nexus line illustrates the platform’s potential for other phone makers and often receives Android updates prior to other phones. As a result, the reported hardware specifications generally seem plausible to me, although it seems odd that Samsung would use a Texas Instruments chip to power the phone.

Although we haven’t seen a phone with this high of a screen resolution, the highlight of the phone may not be hardware. Google intends to unify its phone and tablet platforms with a new version of Android, called Ice Cream Sandwich. That will allow developers to build apps for both Android tablets and smartphones while also bringing similar user interface features between the two device types.

Samsung is holding a launch event on Oct. 11, saying “something BIG is coming.” Given that Google planned to introduced its new version of Android around this time, it’s likely the launch will include both the new Nexus and the Ice Cream Sandwich software.

There’s also the outside chance of a new Samsung tablet, but I suspect the next Nexus will be in the spotlight. And if these specifications pan out, it appears that the Nexus Prime is the reason why Verizon opted not to carry Samsung’s Galaxy S II smartphone, which lacked LTE support.

  1. I was really hoping for an 8MP camera. Hmmm….

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    1. Jack, depending on the sensor and lens solution, 5 MP might be good enough. Photos taken with the iPhone 4, for example, are often better than images from phones with 8 MP sensors. Of course, we always want the best hardware, but if done right, 5 MP will meet most needs I think. We’ll see next week for sure!

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      1. Yes 5Mp vs 8Mp has no impact on quality, its all about the quality of the sensor.

        I was hoping for OMAP4470, but everything else is cutting edge.

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    2. honestly the megapixel count loss is so minimal you wont even notice. Plus they lowered the count so it could have a better low light sensor giving you an even better photo, or so i heard :p

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  2. BGR, reported, the new iPhone would be a Sprint, exclusive. Wrong. So, who knows. It seems odd a Nexus phone would be locked to one carrier. Not very Google? It’s feeling like Christmas, in October.

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  3. According to Texas Instruments website the OMAP 4460 is clocked at 1.5 GHz.

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    1. Could be underclocked for battery possibly. Between LTE the bigger screen and the 1.5ghz processor it’s possible, but unlikely imo.

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  4. I was hearing they’d announce two phones – Droid Prime and a Nexus Galaxy

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  5. John Harrington, Jr. Thursday, October 6, 2011

    Does anyone know much these are supposed to sell for?

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    1. I’m hoping for $199 but would be willing to bet it comes out at $299.

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      1. Verizon’s LTE phones have generally launched in the $249 to $299 range (but came down in price later) so if this a VZ exclusive, I’m thinking the same price range with contract.

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    2. John Harrington, Jr. Thursday, October 6, 2011

      Kevin, considering Apple has priced its 4S based on the the amount of built in storage it has, it sounds like the Galaxy Nexus will be priced toe-to-toe with the 4S (since the 32 GB 4S is $299 and you suspect the same from the 32 GB Galaxy Nexus). If they sell it at $249 that could be a big selling point this holiday season.

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      1. Valid point, John. Then again, most Android phones debut at one price and then see price cuts of $50, $100 or more, making them cheaper than the iPhone. I’m not sure it makes that much difference in terms of sales, but that would be interesting to analyze!

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  6. I’m just hoping that this new OS will help build more apps for Android users. It’s one of the things that keep iPhones ahead of the pack.

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  7. I need them to NOT put this as a verizon exclusive…

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  8. The specs match the Samsung Galaxy S II HD LTE, which was already announced in Korea on September 26.
    The only difference I can see at first glance is the CPU speed: 1.2 GHz vs. 1.5 GHz.

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    1. Screen resolution is a big difference, I wonder what is powering it. Right now the 4s has the lead on screen resolution quality + GPU power to back it up. The screen rez on the Galaxy is lackluster but okay GPU power, not nearly as powerful as 4s which will allow more powerful games on the 4s.

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      1. “The screen rez on the Galaxy is lackluster” Huh? I’m talking about the Galaxy S II HD, which has a 4.65-inch Super AMOLED HD screen with 1280 x 720 resolution.

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      2. Here’s a link to the Galaxy S II HD specs, in case you missed it:
        http://www.engadget.com/2011/09/26/samsung-announces-galaxy-s-ii-lte-and-galaxy-s-ii-hd-lte-handset/

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      3. John Harrington, Jr. Friday, October 7, 2011

        If you’re looking for a side-by-side comparison of the iPhone 4S and Galaxy Nexus tech specs, check here: http://bit.ly/o7518Q

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      4. John Harrington, Jr. Friday, October 7, 2011

        I apologize, here is a link to the iPhone 4S vs. Galaxy Nexus post: http://bit.ly/pYVa8b (posted the wrong link!)

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  9. Geoffrey Penny Thursday, October 6, 2011

    omap 4460 is going to offer some serious OC potential… also there’s going to be a bluetooth workaround for wireless tethering based on architecture

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  10. The is an update to this post…these specs are not accurate. It will have a higher CPU, and 8 mp camera

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