Last year Google switched up their Nexus program by releasing a premium smartphone at a premium price. With Motorola, the release of the Nexus 6 signalled Google’s intent of providing only the very best hardware to compliment its latest stock software. The increase in price wasn’t to everyone’s liking with many worrying Google’s change wasn’t customer friendly.
Well, Google look to make a another change that could split opinion with this year’s Nexus release. Not only are they gearing up to release two Nexus smartphones but for the first time they are putting the hardware in the hands of Chinese OEM Huawei. We already have a good picture what LG’s 2015 Nexus may look like and now we’re going to examine what Huawei may bring to the table. Here’s everything we know about the 2015 Nexus 6.
Huawei’s Nexus is currently codenamed Angler, which we can confidently say definitely won’t be its retail name. Rumours have suggested that LG’s Nexus will be called the Nexus 5X, as a way of Google keeping their naming traditions while introducing a new handset. It seems most logical Google will opt for the same strategy for Huawei’s device and call it the 6X. Nexus 7 is already occupied by a Google tablet but another option would be add a “2015” or “2nd gen” suffix to the Nexus 6 name. A third alternative would be to team up with Huawei on the name, Huawei Nexus Mate anyone?
The way Huawei’s Nexus will look has been the hottest topic of them all. We know we are likely to be handed an all metal chassis, we know we’ll see the Nexus name sprawled across its back and we know there’ll be a fingerprint scanner on the back. Several sets of photos of “leaked designs” have us wondering what exactly is going on with the protruding top section that will house the camera and flash. It’s not the most beautiful looking thing we’ve seen and that’s being polite. Right now we’re just hoping these images are prototypes that will see some change before release.
A separate section holding the camera and flash isn’t a new feature for Huawei phones but this design featuring a protruding camera bar doesn’t leave us feeling hopeful for the Nexus’s design
An all metal body doesn’t seem too unlikely for this device. Google have been impressed by the materials used on Huawei’s Honor 7 and given the premium feel of the last Nexus this seems to be the way this year’s flagship will go. This will also allow for the device to compete with the likes of HTC, Apple and Samsung’s major releases.
A sleek and slender aluminium device packing stock Android is what appears to be on the cards. Motorola’s 6 was nicknamed Shamu for its colossal 5.96in display. This year’s Nexus is currently believed to be just a little smaller than that with word pointing at a 5.7in display or even what more recent reports are claiming to a 5.5in display. Profuse leaker @evleaks believes whatever size the device is, it’ll will run a Quad HD resolution display.
Huawei’s love for premium materials could translate to another metal bodied Nexus device
Google have expressed a preference for USB type-C connectors for its devices going forward so the likelihood of Huawei packing the hardware is pretty high, especially if Google indeed are looking to make USB type-C their new cross-platform standard.
Initial rumours claimed Huawei’s Nexus will be powered by a Snapdragon 820 chip, this is very much up in the air however. The Snapdragon 820 will not be available for smartphones until December, meaning the first devices to use the chip may not be available till March 2016. All this is according to Chinese analyst Pan Jiutang anyway. The analyst also claims it is more likely any Huawei Nexus will be powered by a Snapdragon 810 chip instead.
Looking at Huawei’s current top devices gives us an interesting look at what could be under the hood of this year’s Google flagship. The Honor 7 packed a quad-core Cortex chip along with 3GB of RAM.
The fingerprint scanner that just missed Motorola’s Nexus is due to be introduced on Huawei’s
The Huawei Nexus is also expected to have 32GB of internal storage and a 3,500 mAh battery. GizmoChina claimed in August that the Nexus 6 2015 would feature a 21MP rear camera and with Huawei’s love of fancy cameras this again seems like a real possibility.
Android M is expected on the Nexus from launch and as the OS brings native fingerprint recognition to stock Android for the first time a fingerprint scanner is a given. What’s an even more interesting prospect is if Huawei opt to add the Honor 7’s greatest trick: its gesture sensitive fingerprint scanner.
Last year’s Motorola made Nexus came at a cost of $650/£500 at launch which deviated greatly from the typically low-cost Nexus lineup. The price was reflective of the device’s build and specs so if Google are looking to go as high end as they did last year we could be seeing a Nexus of similar pricing.
On the other hand, Huawei have built a bit of a reputation for affordable handsets and with a model that is 0.26 inches smaller (or even smaller), Techradar are anticipating a slightly cheaper device at around $600/£415.
Google have a Nexus event planned for September 29th, which no betting man would bet against being the date the search giants unveil both Nexus devices. Android Marshmallow is scheduled for a Q3 2015 release which means that the new Nexus could be announced alongside Google’s brand new operating system.