Welcome to another new weekly column where we round up all the Android-related rumors and discuss the validity of each one. Everyone seems to love our original rumor reports, but we thought it would be fun to examine the rumors from around the web and share our thoughts on the possibility of them coming true. Read on for this week’s latest Android rumors.
Is this the rumored Nexus tablet?
Our thoughts: We have been reporting on the rumored Nexus tablet for the last couple months, and now the Wall St. Journal is sharing new details of how Google plans to sell it.
Our first rumor report suggested that the device would be similar to the ASUS MeMo 370T, but then other sources said that device had been abandoned in favor of a cheaper design. The MeMo 370T was supposed to retail for $249, but NVIDIA has already said that Tegra 3 tablets will approach $199 soon, and we said that the final price could drop to $149.
The Wall St. Journal said Google was considering subsidizing the cost of the device to better compete with Amazon and their $199 Kindle Fire, so the final price could hit that magical $149 (or lower) price point where you see these devices sold at 7-Eleven stores.
Looking at the device pictured above, we can see it appears to be your average 7-inch tablet. There are ports for micro USB, micro HDMI, SD card, and headphone jack. At the bottom of the device on the left side there appears to be a SIM card slot, but most people expect this device to be WiFi only.
The docking and charging port is on the side of the device, along with two holes that would suggest a keyboard dock. ASUS is best know for their Transformer devices that feature optional keyboards, so it’s possible that Google wanted to integrate that feature.
Since price is the main selling point with this device, we don’t expect the design to be that exciting. This leaked photo still features the Android Market so it’s likely a couple months old, but we think there is a chance it could still be real.
Update: Evan Blass tells us we can knock down our probability percentage to near zero, as he believes the device pictured is an existing Toshiba 7.7 inch tablet.
The Galaxy S III will launch later than expected, in Q3
Rumor: Digitimes reports, “Sources in the supply chain said Samsung is likely to launch a 4.6 inch Galaxy S3 that has an increased pixel size of 319pp in the second or third quarter of 2012, and will use the Super AMOLED HD Plus panel.”
Our thoughts: Samsung has previously said, “The successor to the Galaxy S2 smartphone will be unveiled at a separate Samsung-hosted event in the first half of the year, closer to commercial availability of the product.” Most people are expecting some kind of announcement in May or June, that is closer to availability, but there could still be a month or two lag before it hits retail stores, given the usual carrier delays.
Previous rumors have already suggested the display size would be somewhere between 4.6-4.8 inches and use a new HD Super AMOLED Plus display, and that still looks likely.
Samsung is focused on beating Apple’s next iPhone, so we don’t see them trying to push up the launch for no good reason. It sounds more likely that they would favor waiting until they had the best possible combination of hardware and software to create a totally new experience.
Don’t be surprised if the Galaxy S III launches in the second half of 2012.
Galaxy Nexus comes to Sprint on April 22nd
Rumor: Dante D’Orazio of The Verge reports that the Galaxy Nexus will come to Sprint on April 15th.
Our thoughts: Rumors from a couple of weeks ago suggested a release date of April 15th, but it’s no surprise to hear that a phone launch got pushed back by a week. Kellen of AndroidLife also reported that Sprint had begun training their employees on the Galaxy Nexus this week, so it’s looking more likely that the official launch date could be announced at any time.
Tegra 4 to feature a 64 core GPU
Rumor: Theo Valich of VR-Zone reports that NVIDIA’s Tegra 4 could feature 4-5x Cortex-A15 CPU cores, and 32-64 Kepler CUDA cores.
Our thoughts: The last time we saw the official Tegra roadmap, NVIDIA told us Kal-El (Tegra 3) would be followed by Wayne, Logan, and Stark. No official announcements have been made surrounding Wayne, but NVIDIA has already hinted they would use Cortex-A15 when they announced their custom CPU core called Project Denver.
We still expect to see Wayne arrive in 2012 and feature multiple Cortex-A15 CPU cores, but the GPU design has been a mystery. NVIDIA also hinted that their new Kepler architecture, found in desktop computer graphics cards, would make its way down to smartphones.
NVIDIA likes to surprise their competitors and rumors of a 64 GPU cores go back to last year, so it’s highly likely we will see something much more advanced than the 12-core GPU found in Tegra 3.
Sprint will announce the HTC EVO One tomorrow
Rumor: Multiple sites report Sprint and HTC will announce the EVO One tomorrow.
Our thoughts: The leaks keep increasing as we approach Sprint’s press event scheduled for April 4th in New York. The HTC One X was first rumored to come to Sprint, followed by news of an early June release, and last week we heard the device would hit stores with the name EVO One.
Sprint is announcing a new HTC smartphone tomorrow, and we feel pretty comfortable with saying it will keep the EVO brand alive.
Got any juicy rumors?
Find any hot Android-related rumors that we failed to cover? Just contact Taylor or leave a comment below and we will evaluate them next week.