Ever since the Nexus One, Google has had a device to show off what Android is — in its purist form. Specifications on these devices haven’t been earth-shattering, but they’ve certainly packed enough power to let the Android OS shine. Generally speaking, these Nexi also featured a new component or two that eventually become commonplace in other devices (NFC, barometer, etc.). Recently Google has also used their “Nexus” line to demonstrate how higher-end phones and tablets can be offered inexpensively (at least if you’re in the U.S.A.) through their own Play Store.
Up until recently there’s only been one Nexus device — though they did come in various flavors to cover multiple carriers. Google changed that when they introduced the Nexus 7 tablet which they sold alongside their Galaxy Nexus smartphone. Which brings us to Google’s current Nexus lineup — with only one Nexus smartphone.
What about the rumored others?
For months we saw rumors of “multiple Nexus phones” which would signify a “monumental shift” in Google’s Nexus strategy. Then they went away.
Some thought a Galaxy Nexus 2 from Samsung would be a slam-dunk. Samsung doesn’t need to make another Nexus, they’ve established themselves by producing a high-end product which shows in their Galaxy S III and Note II products. Even still, we did see some hints that a Galaxy Nexus 2 might be forthcoming.
Google purchased Motorola quite some time ago. Many of us thought we’d start seeing the “Motorola” brand go away, to be replaced with “Google”, or as least augmented by it. We also thought we’d see a Motorola Nexus phone soon. Outside of the Motorola Xoom tablet, we haven’t seen much of a collaboration between Motorola and Google.
Lastly, we saw a fairly convincing photo of an alleged Nexus coming from Sony (that was later revealed to be a fake).
We had all kinds of hints about a Nexus device coming from LG, and that’s ultimately what we ended up with.
Why so many rumors?
Where did all the rumors come from? There are essentially two potential sources: manufacturers were actually prototyping these devices, or people were just making them up — in actuality it was probably a little of both.
- One source, as it turns out, was completely false, made up for reasons unknown, probably to get pageviews on a website or bragging rights that his fake had duped so many people.
- To the best of my knowledge, the Galaxy Nexus 2 information was never debunked — it could have been legitimate, but the device may not have made the final cut.
- The Motorola rumors were nothing more than speculation.
- The LG leaks turned out to be true.
When actual leaks are combined with the fervor of a new device, imaginations run wild, some may fuel the flames with speculation which may be picked up by others as “fact” and passed along as such.
We don’t know how Google goes about recruiting a partner for their latest Nexus devices. Do they have various manufacturers submit spec lists? Perhaps even semi-functional prototypes? Or does Google make the selection before any device is more than just an idea on paper? If it’s the former there are all kinds of possibilities for leaked images of devices that never made the cut — but were impressive in their own way.
Ultimately, there were multiple Nexi, just not multiple Nexus phones, which undoubtedly contributed to the rumor mill.