What an emotional week for the Android and Me team. Bringing on new writers and breaking them in, Clark stepping in as the full-time bossman, and Taylor’s farewell post all shoved together. It’s a pretty exciting time here at Android and Me, and rest assured that with Clark at the wheel, there’s going to be some interesting things on the way for the website for sure. As far as the news goes, however, I felt it was appropriate to address Taylor’s final words to everyone. An Nvidia Tegra 3 powered LG Android phone with the Nexus branding to be the next Nexus device. That’s a pretty audacious tip to leave someone with nothing there to give it credence, aside from the fact that it came from Taylor. How crazy is it, though? Let’s take a look!
Clue 1 – The Open Handset Alliance
While everything you will see in this article is purely speculative, there’s a pretty clear line drawn here, I think. When the Open Handset Alliance was formed, four device manufacturers threw their hats in with Google, amongst the 34 companies that were the OHA’s “Founding Fathers”. Those companies were HTC, Samsung, Motorola, and LG. Now, of these four companies, LG is the only company who has not released either a “Nexus” device, or been the first to market with a new version of Android. HTC and Samsung both have Nexus devices, and Motorola has been first to the market with a new version of Android, not once, but twice with the original Droid and the Xoom. Additionally, LG has only recently started making competitive high-end handsets, as anyone who has touched a G2X will confirm.
Now also part of the OHA founding fathers is nVidia, who has not sat idly as Qualcomm soaked up the adulation of Android fans the world over. Their Tegra line provide the dual core capabilities that Android fans crave, and toss in high quality graphics without the high power consumption to boot.
Given all the attention Google has NOT given LG and nVidia, and considering the impressive displays both companies have made recently, it’s not hard to imagine Google giving both companies a shot at their handset.
Clue 2 – nVidia and LG are already partners
If my first attempt to address the possibility wasn’t enough, consider that LG and nVidia are already working together on devices such as the G-Slate tablet for T-Mobile. The success of either the G-Slate or the G2X would ensure that nVidia and LG would be in business in the future, and LG’s internal development team will already have a unique relationship with nVidia’s products. If Google were to call on these two companies for a device, their existing relationship would make the steps from concept to product go much faster.
Clue 3 – nVidia’s roadmap fits the schedule
Everybody knows that nVidia is planning the Tegra 3 processors, expected to be a quad core offering at the high-end of the spec and a dual core at the more power conservative end of the spec. If a Nexus device is announced in December, then it’s likely it would be on the shelves by late January or early February. According to LG’s own roadmap, samples of the Tegra 3 will be available to some companies late this fall, with an expected release for production in late Q4 2011. The Tegra 2 was scheduled for a Fall 2010 release, and the first handset, the Atrix, was available this February. nVidia’s own production schedule matched the time needed to produce and prepare the technology for use.
Based on the information that’s out there, and the schedule of events, I would not at all be surprised if Taylor is spot on with this tip. I think it’s very likely that Google’s next Nexus device, maybe even their next Dev phone, ends up being an LG phone with nVidia’s Tegra 3 chipset. Would you buy an “LG Nexus T3″?