Nexus 10 2 Release Date, Specs and Rumours: Could HTC Produce It?
Our handy round-up of news and rumours about the Google Nexus 10 2
Google's Nexus 10 2 is well on the way to becoming some kind of mythological beast, such is its continued elusiveness - like a Unicorn, or something.
But perhaps another analogy could be Captain Ahab's White Whale, because for many that elusiveness has become teeth-gnashingly infuriating. True to the standard tech company protocol, Google has said absolutely nothing about the rumoured Nexus 10 2, neither confirming or denying its existence.
Rumours have persisted for what seems like an eternity. The spec sheet has changed very little after a point, it's still thought we'll see a Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 chip, a full HD 1080p display and Android 4.4 KitKat, as well as a thinner and lighter device just like the improvements made to the Nexus 7 2013 over its predecessor. But, this is all assuming the thing is even real, which looks increasingly doubtful, as Google continues to keep quiet and the rumoured release dates keep coming and going without a peep. The light at the end of the tunnel keeps moving further and further away.
Ahead of the launch – if there is a launch – we’ve aggregated all the rumours, news and apparently leaked information in one place, our Nexus 10 2 hub. Enjoy, if you can.
HTC To Produce The Nexus 10 2?
Last week rumours pointed toward HTC producing the next Nexus tablet but there was no word on which Nexus tablet variant the company would be working on. Now a report has suggested HTC could be crafting the next Nexus 10, aka the Nexus 10 2. If this is true, HTC will be replacing Samsung as the manufacturer for the 10-inch Android slate.
HTC has worked on Nexus devices previously and created Google's first Nexus device, the Nexus One.
HTC has a bad history of working on tablets though as both the 7-inch HTC Flyer and the 10-inch Jetstream from 2011 failed to take off. According to sources which spoke to DigiTimes, Pricing was a problem on both the slates and a lack of “killer applications” also forced HTC to leave the tablet market.
The sources added it would be a difficult task for HTC to produce the Nexus 10 considering Samsung and Google both failed to ramp up the original Nexus 10.
Then again, this information hasn’t come directly from HTC so there’s currently no confirmation. We really want to see the next Nexus 10 enter production so hopefully this report has some weight behind it.
Nexus 10 2 to feature Android 4.5?
Google's Nexus 10 2 is the Schrodinger's cat of tablets. It's certainly not dead but it's not alive either - so while we wait to find out more about its development status, the rumours continue.
Now Tech Default has suggested that the 10-inch tablet will be released with - get this - Android 4.5.
The site quotes a "credible source" saying that the successor to Google's flagship 10-inch tablet will carry the latest version of the Android operating system in a bid to appease critics who have waited so long for the slate.
But, there's still no word on when the release date will be, although if the Nexus 10 2 does run Android 4.5 we imagine it'll be later in the year.
In the meantime, as the wait for the Nexus 10 2 continues (with many suggesting it may not come out at all) many are choosing other 10-inch Android tablets like the recently-released Galaxy Note 10.1 2014, or even opting for Apple's iPad Air.
Nexus brand getting killed off in 2015? Could this explain the lack of a Nexus 10 2?
Worrying news has emerged via the Twittosphere, with prominent tech seer Eldar Murtazin claiming Google will kill off the Nexus brand in 2015.
Murtazin, who has enough accurate predictions under his belt to be taken seriously, despite not always being right on the money, says the Nexus line will be "over in 2015", after which it will be "replaced by Play Edition."
However, more intriguing, it seems the "replaced by Play Edition" comment isn't referring to the name, which could actually be getting a refresh according to the Tweet.
That can only really leave the Play Edition model, which uses OEM flagship devices re-branded, with stock Android onboard and Nexus-like update support direct from Google.
Nexus line by Google is over in 2015 ;) Yes - this line will be replaced by Play Edition (current name, it will be rebranded)
— Eldar Murtazin (@eldarmurtazin) January 27, 2014
So this would mean an end to manufacturer's making bespoke Nexus devices (with custom exteriors as well as stock Android) for Google to distribute.
This could explain why Google is yet to reveal a Nexus 10 2 successor model - it may not be planning one at all if this is the long-term plan.
But with that said, it is a little odd, because if a refresh had already been launched when it was previously expected, it still would have given a year's cycle for the product before the Nexus brand is canned. Assuming this is legit, of course.
That being the case, we still think the Nexus 10 2 isn't happening due to the original not selling as well as Google would have liked, but the potential cancellation of the Nexus brand certainly wouldn't help matters.
No Nexus 10 news but Intel-powered Nexus 8 is a possibility
Every passing day gives us less hope to see a Nexus 10 2. It’s sad but it doesn’t seem like Google is interested in creating another 10-inch tablet. This rumour doesn’t have the best basis either, it’s from an “upstream supply chain” source, but it could have some weight to it.
According to Digitimes Google is going to focus its attention to an 8-inch tablet in 2014. The release of various 7-inch budget tablets has taken away sales from Google and it now wants to focus on a Nexus 8, according to the publications sources from the Asian supply network.
The sources also revealed Google may use the Intel Bay Trail-T processor for the device but nothing is certain as of yet. It’s true the 7-inch tablet market is now quite busy. There’s Google’s own Nexus 7 alongside the Samsung Galaxy Tab, some editions of the Amazon Kindle Fire and then a load of budget options such as the Tesco Hudl and Nvidia Tegra Note.
But if Google decides to release a Nexus 8-inch tablet it will have to compete with the big dog Apple and the iPad Mini. There's no word on a suspected release window either, but we'd expect before the end of the year if the news is real. We’ll keep you posted if we hear anything more on a Nexus 8.
Nexus 10 2 specs and picture leak but suspected as hoax
Specs and a picture alleged to be the Nexus 10 2 appeared online today but have since been labelled as a probable hoax.
Reliable Twitter source @evleaks posted the image and a list of specs but stated at the time that the authenticity could not be verified.
The spec list included an Exynos 5 processor with 3GB of RAM, a WQXGA resolution display (2560x1600 pixels) and both 3MP and 5MP cameras. It was pegged to come in both 16GB and 32GB variants but one suspicious point was the allegation of Android 4.5.
The Exynos chip, 3GB of RAM and the overall design pointed to the idea that Samsung would once again make the Nexus 10.
However, since the leak was posted, @evleaks has pulled the Tweet:
Pulled the "Nexus 10" tweet. Was sent to multiple publications, along with slightly differing "corroborating evidence." Signs of a hoax.
— @evleaks (@evleaks) January 14, 2014
Nexus pricing shift prompts questions over imminent Nexus 10 2 launch, as benchmarks hint at Tegra 4 chip
Reports indicate a Nexus 10 2 launch could be imminent and there's some indication of what hardware it might use.
According to Motoring Crunch (which doesn't cite any sources for the report) a leaked benchmark indicates the Nexus 10 2 could ship with Nvidia's Tegra 4 quad-core processor, rather than the Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 as was previously rumoured.
In a subsequent report, the same publication notes that the Google Nexus 7 2013 Edition has received a price drop at a number of US retailers. This sort of price shift has in the past been interpreted as indicating a new addition to a product line-up and it's thought it could mean the Nexus 10 2 is on the way.
We'd take this with a substantial pinch of salt, however, as it's a fairly inconsistent indicator of a new product launch.
Is Google’s silence over Nexus 10 2 update Ninja marketing at its finest?
Richard Goodwin argues the case
The Google Nexus 10 2 has been linked with many potential launch dates and none have yet proved correct. Google’s Android 4.4 launch, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, CES 2014 – all were suggested as potential reveal dates, and all turned out to be wrong. So what the hell is going on?
Look around the web and there certainly seems to be demand for a larger, higher-specced Nexus slate. Facebook, Twitter and Google+ are chock-full of tech-heads demanding to know where the hell the Nexus 10 2 is?
And this has been going on for quite some time now, although much of this buzz is down to the false alarms that were Black Friday, Cyber Monday and CES 2014. And with those out of the way the next potential launch pad for the Nexus 10 2 is MWC 2014 in Barcelona at the end of February – just don’t go holding your breath on that one though.
Either way, to cut a long story short, no one knows what’s happening with the Nexus 10 2. And that’s fine: technology companies are secretive beasts. But couldn’t Google just save a lot of people a lot of headaches and either confirm or deny whether or not they’re actually going to release a new Nexus 10?
It’s not that hard. Just issue a statement to the press: “Hey guys, Google here. Yep, we are making a follow-up to 2012’s Nexus 10. Details to follow in due course.”
It’d be great, a tech company listening to its consumers, answering their questions. But that’s never going to happen. Google doesn’t care if you’ve been saving up for months, doing extra paper rounds and selling old clothes and/or possessions so you can buy a Nexus 10 2 once it’s released. Sorry, little Timmy.
Nope, Google – like most tech firms – would rather just let the internet talk itself into a fluster, get people worked up about the product, let the rumour mill do its thing and then, when they can take it no more, unveil the thing everybody has been clamoring over for months. BOOM! Ninja marketing.
Personally, I’d prefer it – both as a journo and a consumer – if firms like Google – or Apple, or BlackBerry, or Microsoft – just communicated better with their consumers. If someone asks: “Are you doing another Nexus 10 slate?” Google should just tell them the truth – yes or no. Hold back the details, of course, but confirm either way if one is coming or not.
That’s all it’d take, just a little statement of intent – something to put consumers’ minds at rest. I know Apple doesn’t do this, or Samsung – no-one talks about new products before they’re official, and that’s perfectly understandable. Trade secrets and all.
But the Nexus 10 2 is different. The original Nexus 10 was a great tablet, but it didn’t sell especially well. It was also the first – and perhaps only – large-form tablet device Google has ever produced, meaning unlike a new iPhone or Galaxy Note device we’re not exactly guaranteed a refresh…
Google not restocking Nexus 10
Google has said it has no plans to restock the Nexus 10 when it sells out on the Google Play store. The 16GB version is now sold out on the store but there is still stock left for the 32GB version.
A spokesperson for Google told TechnoBlimp Google, “does not plan to restock the device once it sells out.” This has sparked rumours that the Nexus 10 second generation could in fact still be in development after various rumours Google had killed plans for the device.
On the other hand, Google could be killing the Nexus 10 range altogether. It’s common knowledge consumers have preferred other Nexus devices to the company’s 10-inch tablet but there’s still hope the 10 2 is in development.
Nexus 10 2 - Reasons it's not happening
Google has recieved overwhelmingly positive feedback in terms of sales and reviews for many of its flagship Nexus devices, including the Nexus 4 and Nexus 5 smartphones and both old and new iterations of the 7-inch Nexus 7.
The original Nexus 10 was fairly warmly recieved in the press, but in terms of sales, while it could hardly be considered a flop, it does appear to have been the weakest performer compared to its stable mates.
Google doesn't provide sales figures, so this is a tricky one to call, but industry analysts have revealed fairly believable estimates earlier this year.
In April 2013, analyst Benedict Evans made predictions of Nexus 10 (bearing in mind the slate launched in November 2012) sales based on correlating active Android user data and details from Google's development information, specifically focusing on screen size and resolution of devices in use.
Evans believed there were around 6.8 million Nexus devices in use but only about 10 per cent, or 680,000, could be Nexus 10s.
Despite Android's gains in tablet market share, this clearly isn't happening off the back of the Nexus 10, as these figures, pinpoint accurate or not, pale in comparison to Apple's iPad sales.
While Google's Nexus 10 may have a hard core of extremely dedicated fans, from a business perspective this isn't enough of a reason for Google to invest in a follow-up device.
A related factor is the cost of the Nexus 10 and any potential follow-up device, both in terms of what it costs Google to make it and how that is carried to the consumer.
Google's big experiment with the Nexus smartphones and the Nexus 7 tablets was in offering premium-grade hardware at a distinctly non-premium price point and it's an experiment which I think we can all agree is a success.
The Nexus 10 isn't in the same sphere, however, with even higher-grade hardware but an expensive price tag to match (at the time of its launch anyway). Chief amongst the premium features is that massive 10.1-inch, 300 pixel-per-inch display, and display panels like that don't come cheap.
where the heck is the nexus 10 2?! i should just look at another tablet cos CLEARLY @GooglePlay dont want my moneys
— Dionne Josephs (@dididinosaur) December 3, 2013
This may be one of the reasons it didn't sell so well, but due to the cost of making it being likely so much higher, Google is in a more difficult position when it comes to retailing it at a lower price point which might be more appealing to consumers.
The alternative, of course, is to drop the spec in order to drop the price, but for fans of the existing Nexus 10 this is unlikely to fly and it isn't offering the same "value" proposition to new buyers as other members of the Nexus family anyway.
In short, Google is yet to figure out a way of offering a 10-inch device with a premium spec at the low cost which the majority of Nexus buyers require - that means reduced sales, which makes it a poor investment from the business perspective.
Could LG 510 be Nexus version of Google Play G Pad 8.3?
It’s the rumour that just won’t quit – where is Google’s Nexus 10 2? At present, no one really knows. For instance, we don’t even know for sure that Google is planning to refresh its original Nexus 10. Everything is conjecture at present and Google, of course, isn’t saying anything about “new” devices.
But then again, they never do – which means until it gets official, all we have is leaks, leaks and speculation. And when it comes to leaks, there’s one source that’s always bang on the money –– @evleaks.
So when they tweeted the following:
The LG V510 tablet is indeed a Nexus device. [via tip] pic.twitter.com/hhKZ2B9NtQ
— @evleaks (@evleaks) December 8, 2013
It certainly got chins wagging. Could the LG V510 actually be the Nexus 10 2 update we’ve all been waiting for? Perhaps. LG and Google are pretty tight these days – the Korean tech firm made both the Nexus 4 and Nexus 5 and has recently launched a Google Play edition of its LG G Pad 8.3.
Is the LG V510 a Nexus version of the G Pad 8.3? It’s not gospel but it is something at least…
Google Nexus 10 2, where art thou?
At one point it seemed like a done deal. The Nexus 7 launch and release date came and went, and then all eyes turned to Google’s other tablet – the Nexus 10. But it never showed up… and now some reports are suggesting that Google is ditching the 10-inch form factor in favour of something smaller.
This news comes via IB Times, which claims the Nexus 10 update isn’t happening at all, and that Google is ditching the 10-inch form-factor in favour of something smaller – “most likely an 8-inch or a 9-inch device”. No sources were named, however, so we’re filing this one very much under “rumours and conjecture” for the time being.
The origin of the rumour – IB Times – said the (8-inch or 9-inch) Nexus 10 would perhaps launch on Cyber Monday - which it did not.
Other reports offer similar tales of discontinuation and the impending release of a new – but markedly different – Nexus tablet. On the subject of the current Nexus 10, Android Origin says it has it on good authority – an unnamed Google exec – that the 10-inch tablet will be discontinued once current stock is sold out.
“Speculation suggests that this could be an indicator of a soon to release Nexus 10 2013/2014,” said the blog. Another explanation is that Google is done with larger form tablets, and will instead focus on its current 7-inch Nexus 7.
The Google Nexus 10 (16GB) is now officially out of stock inside Google Play. Expect the 32GB version to follow suit soon after. What happens after that is anyone’s guess, however…
Google's rumoured Nexus 10 2, or Nexus 10 2013, appears to have recieved the same accidental official leak via Google Play that its phone counterpart, the Nexus 5, enjoyed ahead of launch. A picture and spec sheet allegedly appeared momentarily on Google's web store before being removed again.
The included spec sheet revealed the same 10.1-inch display at 300 pixels-per-inch with a 2560x1600 pixel resolution as the earlier Nexus 10. The rest of the hardware had been boosted though as we now have an 8-megapixel primary camera and a 2.1-megapixel secondary, a 9,500mAh battery (an increase of 500mAh) and a Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 quad-core chip.
The leaked image looks more believable than the last one, which was clearly faked. This could conceivably also be a fake, but it is a bit more convincing on the face of things. That wallpaper though. Hideous.
The proportions of the device appear to have been refined with a narrower bezel all round. The specs say it is now 258.9mm wide by 172.6mm tall, it's also lighter and thinner at 584g and 7.9mm respectively.
But again, this could simply be an elaborate hoax, so do take it all with more than your healthy daily intake of salt.
"That" Leaked Image is Fake
A render has been doing the rounds on mobile tech sites which has been generating speculation that a Nexus 10 2 launch is imminent.
While it is perfectly possible that Google will launch a Nexus 10 successor, we think this particular picture isn’t proof in the slightest. We actually think it’s unlikely the Nexus 10 2 will emerge, primarily because of the nature of leaks and rumours in relation to forthcoming releases generally means that if it was coming, we would have seen much more about it by now, as we did with the Nexus 5 and Nexus 7 2013. But, never say never.
Anyway, onto the reasons why the Nexus 10 2 leaked image, which emerged on imgur.com, is a hoax. Well, first of all let’s have a look at the Nexus 5.
This is precisely what the Nexus 5, and Android 4.4 KitKat, looked like when it launched, but we knew it would in advance. There was no question about this. The above image appeared on the Google Play store ahead of launch with the Nexus 5 product listing momentarily before Google recognised its blunder and pulled it down, but not before a few dozen tech sites took a screenshot.
We have previously observed the changes from the Android 4.3 interface and what’s new in Android 4.4 KitKat in a side-by-side comparison. If a Nexus 10 2 does emerge, at any point from now on, it will almost certainly be packing Android 4.4 KitKat as well, and although it will be tablet optimised it will certainly share many of these UI changes. There may be some subtle differences, but what it certainly won’t do is re-use elements from Android 4.3.
And that’s why the Nexus 10 2 leak is a fake, because there are plenty of UI elements which are clearly from Android 4.3 and not at all in keeping with the new, fresh-faced Android 4.4.
Take a look at our photoshopped image below – here we’ve used colour coded boxes to point out the areas of the UI which clearly contradict the Nexus 5’s leak of Android 4.4 KitKat, now the released KitKat, of course. We’d encourage you to look at the areas we’ve highlighted on the un-edited image that we've re-posted alongside it to get a clearer view, and compare them to the image of the Nexus 5 (which we'll also re-post again below for convenience) to see how they’re different from what we know about the Android 4.4 KitKat UI.
Look at the area at the top highlighted by the white box. This is the notification bar, which in Android 4.4 KitKat will be transparent with bright white notification icons, as we can see on the Nexus 5 image. Here, it is the old style black bar with bright blue icons, which we’ve seen on multiple iterations of Android prior to KitKat. If you look closely you can also see there’s a band below this which is slightly more faded than the rest of the background which looks suspiciously like it’s come across from a copy-and-paste job of the background on the Nexus 5 image – there’s really no reason for it to be there.
Now look at the area at the bottom highlighted in red. Again, the last few Android versions have featured this white dividing bar between the homescreen page and the app tray, but on the Nexus 5 running Android 4.4 this has been replaced with a dotted page indicator and nothing more.
Look at the two icons highlighted by blue boxes. The middle one is the app drawer icon while the one on the right is the camera shortcut. Both of these appear the same as in Android 4.3 Jelly Bean. However, as the Nexus 5 leak shows, Android 4.4 KitKat will feature new icons for each. The app drawer icon no longer has an outer ring and is now a solid, translucent circle with a shadow behind it, while the six dots appear more circular. Meanwhile the camera icon is now lighter in colour, more stylised and appears to be pointing straight at the user rather than being angled slightly downwards.
Lastly, look at the yellow box at the bottom. This is the navigation bar featuring Android’s on-screen touch controls. As with the notifications bar, in Android 4.4 KitKat this bar is now transparent rather than black as it used to be and as it’s presented on the Nexus 10 leak. The icons are also now bright white rather than a darker grey.