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From rumor to retail: the full story of Google's fourth-generation Nexus

Over recent weeks a new Nexus-class Android smartphone from LG has slowly been taking shape. Recently leaked photos show a device aesthetically similar to Samsung's Galaxy Nexus, albeit with a crazy texture covering its back. Rumors indicate Google will announce the device, which is based on LG's flagship Optimus G, towards the end of October. In terms of software, some reports have indicated that LG's Nexus will run an improved Android 4.2 OS, although the latest hardware leak shows a device running Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. All of the news on LG's new smartphone will appear right here, so keep it locked for more updates.

  • Joshua Topolsky

    Oct 29, 2012

    Joshua Topolsky

    The Nexus 4: Google's flagship phone lands November 13th for $299

    Gallery Photo: Nexus 4 hands-on photos
    Gallery Photo: Nexus 4 hands-on photos

    Google has officially announced the Nexus 4, the latest phone in its Nexus line of flagship Android devices. Built by LG, the phone features a 4.7-inch 1280 x 768 IPS display, a 1.5GHz quad-core Snapdragon S4 Pro processor — which Google claims is the fastest on the market — an 8 megapixel camera and a 1.3 megapixel front-facing camera, and up to 16GB of storage. Oh, and the back is made of glass — etched, layered glass that sparkles with a strange, almost holographic depth.

    Not much of that should be surprising, as the phone had been thoroughly leaked around the web in the past few weeks. What is surprising is how much better it all looks in person. Compared to the LG Optimus G, which shares many of the same components, it's no contest — the Nexus 4 is a far nicer piece of hardware. It feels weighty and high-end, and the tight construction combined with the soft-touch plastic on the sides and chrome edging give it a solidly executive vibe — a vibe that's balanced nicely by the playfulness of Disco City on the back.

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  • Bryan Bishop

    Oct 27, 2012

    Bryan Bishop

    Nexus 4 manual leaks on LG's website, lists 8GB and 16GB versions

    LG Nexus 4 manual comp
    LG Nexus 4 manual comp

    Yesterday we saw what appeared to be the manual for Google's Nexus 10 tablet, and today we're getting a look at one for the Nexus 4 — from LG itself. As spotted by Engadget, LG made the quick-start guide for both 8GB and 16GB variants of the handset available on its UK and Australian sites earlier today. The documents are listed under the name LG E960 — a model number we've heard associated with the next Nexus for some time now — and contain diagrams outlining the physical features of the phone. These drawings confirm the inclusion of an induction coil for wireless charging as had been rumored.

    Between numerous pictures, phones left at bars, and an in-depth review, the Nexus 4 is quickly becoming one of the most-leaked devices we've seen. The only thing left is for Google to do the final honors announcing it at Monday's event.

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  • Bryan Bishop

    Oct 26, 2012

    Bryan Bishop

    Déjà vu: Google employee loses prototype Nexus 4 at San Francisco bar

    nexus 4 carphonewarehouse
    nexus 4 carphonewarehouse

    In 2010 a prototype of Apple's iPhone 4 was left at a bar, leading to it leaking across the internet months before its official debut — and it appears the same almost happened with the much-anticipated new Nexus phone from LG. Wired reports that Jamin Barton, a bartender at the 500 Club in San Francisco, came across an unclaimed smartphone at the venue sometime in September. The device had no SIM card, but did feature the Google logo on the back along with a sticker indicating that it was "not for sale."

    As Barton tells the story, a friend — referenced only as "Dave" — recognized that the phone was likely Google's next Nexus, and agreed to contact the search giant. According to Wired, Dave become upset the following day, saying that Google had threatened that he could be an accessory to what it apparently considered a crime. Google's Global Investigations & Intelligence Manager, Brian Katz, was reportedly the person tasked with retrieving the phone, even telling individuals at the 500 Club that Google could file criminal charges in connection with the misplaced Nexus.

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  • Oct 25, 2012

    Vlad Savov

    Nexus 4 pre-order reveals specs, Android 4.2 Jelly Bean, October 30th release date

    nexus 4 carphonewarehouse
    nexus 4 carphonewarehouse

    The Nexus 4, LG's well-rumored first participation in Google's Nexus program, has unwittingly been revealed by UK phone retailer Carphone Warehouse. An entirely official-looking pre-order page has been put up for the handset, whose display is said to measure 4.7 inches diagonally with a 1280 x 768 resolution. Other salient features include Android 4.2, still called Jelly Bean, a quad-core Snapdragon S4 processor, NFC, and an 8-megapixel camera. Looking into the more detailed spec sheet, the Nexus 4 is listed as being 9.1mm thick and is offered with 8GB of onboard storage.

    One potential new feature to this version 4.2 of Android is something called Gesture Typing. The retailer listing describes it as a Swype-like form of text input that allows you to type by "dragging your finger across the screen from letter to letter."

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  • Chris Welch

    Oct 22, 2012

    Chris Welch

    LG executive reportedly confirms Nexus 4 announcement for October 29th

    ONLINER LG Nexus 4 Leak
    ONLINER LG Nexus 4 Leak

    LG's Nexus smartphone will indeed be announced on October 29th according to a company official. Assuming numerous photos, camera samples, and even a pre-release review somehow hadn't clued you in on the imminent launch, IBNLive removed any remaining doubt when the site caught up with Amit Gujral, Head of Mobile Product Planning for LG's India division. "Google will unveil the LG Nexus on October 29 and the phone will be available in the Indian markets by the end of November," Gujral reportedly said. Additionally, he offered confirmation regarding both the device's hardware and the software it will be running: a 4.7-inch display, 1.5GHz quad-core processor and Android 4.2 are set to be part of the package, says IBNLive.

    French newspaper Le Figaro was first to peg an unveiling for October 29th, a prediction that quickly gained credence when Google issued invitations for an Android event that same day. And while LG has now solidified its plans for international rollout, we're still unclear when Google and its newest hardware partner plan to bring Nexus 4 to the US. Thankfully all will be revealed in only a matter of days.

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  • Sam Byford

    Oct 15, 2012

    Sam Byford

    'Nexus 4' name spotted in photos from Google and LG workers

    nexus 4 exif
    nexus 4 exif

    It's hard to recall a more thoroughly leaked product than LG's upcoming Nexus phone, but here's another bit of information to add to the rumor mill: it seems the device will in fact be known as the Nexus 4. That's according to EXIF data on various photos uploaded to Google+, at least. While it's certainly possible to fake EXIF data, it seems unlikely in these instances; the photos come from both LG's Pyeongtaek Learning Center and a Google employee in Texas.

    Pictures purporting to be from the LG Nexus have shown up before, but their EXIF data referenced the "Mako" codename. This is the first time we've seen pictures tagged "Nexus 4," a name first heard when leaked in retailer listings. French newspaper Le Figaro has claimed the Nexus 4 will be revealed on October 29th.

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  • Dante D'Orazio

    Oct 12, 2012

    Dante D'Orazio

    LG's supposed Nexus 4 given full review treatment ahead of official announcement

    ONLINER LG Nexus 4 Leak
    ONLINER LG Nexus 4 Leak

    Nearly all mystery surrounding LG's rumored Nexus device has now washed away. Following a fairly complete look at the device's hardware, Belarusian blog Onliner has published what it is calling a "preliminary review" of the prototype smartphone, leaving very little to the imagination.

    What first comes to mind when looking at this device is the Galaxy Nexus, which it is supposedly meant to replace. It shares an extremely similar design, with on-screen buttons and a hidden LED notification light on the phone's chin. There are some material changes like chrome buttons and a smooth, patterned back plate, which apparently refused to scratch when struck with a key. What's also new is a micro SIM card tray on the left edge of the phone, which is necessary because the battery is sealed in the prototype LG phone. Other minor changes include a flat screen instead of the curved one on the Galaxy Nexus, and the headphone jack has been moved to the top. There's only 8GB of onboard storage, and there is no microSD card slot.

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  • Aaron Souppouris

    Oct 11, 2012

    Aaron Souppouris

    LG Nexus handset revealed in clearest shots yet

    LG Nexus
    LG Nexus

    Belarusian site Onliner has got its hands on LG's new Nexus 4, revealing the device with perfect clarity for the first time. The site confirms what we've already heard about the device: it's a remodeled version of LG's Optimus G. Dubbed the LG E960, the phone has a quad-core Snapdragon S4 processor, 2GB of RAM, and a 4.7-inch 1280 x 768 display. One thing that doesn't match the rumors is the operating system: the device is currently running Android 4.1.2, rather than 4.2 as rumored, although Onliner hypothesizes that could change before the device's rumored October 29th launch.

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  • Chris Welch

    Oct 10, 2012

    Chris Welch

    LG Nexus 4 announcement due October 29th, says French newspaper

    Google Nexus logo (STOCK)
    Google Nexus logo (STOCK)

    Earlier today we reported that the Nexus 4 is already popping up in retail inventory, so it wouldn't surprise us if Google and LG are shooting for a prompt launch following the public reveal. Leaked specs and photos have given us a decent idea of what to expect from the latest Nexus handset, though questions remain as to what Android-related surprises Google may have in store for its latest flagship device. And if you haven't been thrilled with what you've seen of the Nexus 4 thus far, you may find yourself with other options to pick from.

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  • Ben Kersey

    Oct 10, 2012

    Ben Kersey

    LG Nexus 4 appears in Carphone Warehouse inventory, black and white models listed

    A tipster has sent a photo to The Verge showing LG’s rumored Nexus device listed in the Carphone Warehouse’s inventory system. The device is labeled as the "LG Nexus 4," with color options including black or white. It isn’t definitive proof that this is the final naming for the device, but LG’s handset would be the fourth entry into the Nexus smartphone family. It could also indicate a shift in the Nexus naming convention, pointing towards the general size of the device like the Nexus 7. There’s no indication as to when the LG Nexus will be released, however.

    Recently leaked pictures suggest that the LG Nexus will be based on the Optimus G. The handset is said to feature a 4.7-inch screen with a 1280 x 768 resolution and 1.5Ghz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro processor along with Jelly Bean. We’re fast approaching the one-year anniversary of the Galaxy Nexus announcement, so whatever Google has in store is expected to be revealed shortly.

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  • Chris Ziegler

    Oct 9, 2012

    Chris Ziegler

    Is this LG's Nexus phone? (update)

    LG E960 (xda-developers)
    LG E960 (xda-developers)

    A steady stream of recent rumors have suggested that Google's next volley of Nexus devices will include an LG smartphone, and a new gallery of photos posted by an xda-developers forum member might give us our first peek at what the handset is going to look like when it's announced in the coming weeks. The images show a phone that bears a striking resemblance to LG's recently-announced Optimus G flagship — as expected — which features a 4.7-inch 1280 x 768 display, a 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro processor, and a 13-megapixel primary camera.

    More evidence lies in the phone's About screen, which shows a model number of "Fully JellyBean on Mako" — Nexus afficionados might recognize mako as a type of shark, and all Google-designed Android devices (dating back to the T-Mobile G1) have been named after fish. Labels on the phone also indicate a model number E960, which Droid Life notes has been attached to the mythical LG Nexus phone in previous rumors and has recently passed FCC testing.

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  • Aaron Souppouris

    Oct 5, 2012

    Aaron Souppouris

    LG's Nexus phone rumored for mid-November launch with wireless charging (update)

    Google Nexus logo (STOCK)
    Google Nexus logo (STOCK)

    MoDaCo founder Paul O'Brien has just released details on the purported LG Nexus, which he says came from a source he trusts "101 percent." The smartphone will be released in mid-November and is based on the flagship Optimus G, but the device will not look the same as LG's. The leaked specs include a 1280x768 "True-HD" IPS screen, quad-core Snapdragon S4 processor, and 2GB of RAM. It will also have a sealed, non-removable battery and, initially at least, either 8GB or 16GB of internal storage with no microSD expansion. Although MoDaCo doesn't say how large the LG Nexus' screen might be, if it's based on the Optimus G 4.7-inches would be a good guess.

    Aside from a spec sheet that's among the best on the market, a big selling point for Google seems to be wireless charging out of the box — a feature that's never been found in a Nexus device in the past. O'Brien says it's not clear if the device will be the only Nexus to be released, or one of many, but with the supposed release date little more than a month away, we shouldn't have too long a wait to find out.

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