Think your smartphone is big? Google's anticipated next smarphone, the Nexus 6, is so big it's been code-named "Shamu."
The Nexus 6 will have a larger-than-expected 5.92-inch screen, according to a report Thursday from 9to5Google, significantly upping the ante in the quest for ever-bigger smartphone screens. Earlier reports had said the Nexus 6, manufactured by Motorola, would only feature a 5.2-inch display. It was not immediately clear if the shift to a larger screen was a response to Apple Inc.’s iPhone 6 Plus, or whether the mockup the site reports it saw was just one of a pair of devices.
The Nexus 6 will boast a form factor much like the recently-released Moto X (2014), according to the site. Motorola Mobility was developing the device, code-named “Shamu,” along with Google Inc. as the next Nexus smartphone, according to a number of reports over the past few months. The Nexus 6 is rumored for an October release date following an announcement before the end of September.
The report calls into question Google’s support for 64-bit processing for its forthcoming Android L operating system update. The devices seen by the site reportedly did not support the new processor technology. An industry-wide shift from 32-bit processors is expected to increase smartphone operating speeds as well as battery life, much like it did in the iPhone 5S, in addition to increasing the maximum amount of memory, or RAM.
The Nexus 6 looks like a “scaled up” version of Motorola’s Moto X (2014), the site said. While the Nexus 6’s microphone, headphone port and SIM card are all located in the same place as the Moto X (2014), the volume and lock buttons have been moved down for ergonomic reasons, 9to5Google reported.
As far as hardware specs for the Nexus 6, it reportedly sports a 1440p display (2560 x 1440) versus the Moto X (2014)’s 1080p screen. The rumored 2.6GHz quad-core Snapdragon 805 processor, the last 32-bit system-on-a-chip from Qualcomm, is coupled with 3 gigabytes of RAM, or 50 percent more than the new Moto X. The Nexus 6 is expected to contain 32GB of internal storage for its initial release, with Google and Motorola releasing later models with higher storage in the months that follow.
The Nexus 6 battery is expected to be large as well – 3,200 mAh over the Nexus 5’s 2,300 mAh cell. The Nexus 6 reportedly features an upgraded camera as well, featuring a 12-megapixel rear-facing camera, a 2-megapixel selfie shooter which the site says is the same as the Moto X (2014). The Nexus 6 is also rumored to be named the Nexus X, following Motorola’s naming convention for its Moto X line.
Apple’s release of the 5.5-inch iPhone 6 Plus is widely seen as a response to the bevy of larger Android phones from manufacturers like Samsung, and the Nexus 6’s 5.92-inch display will allow Google to boast a screen that remains bigger than Apple’s largest offering.
Google Chairman Eric Schmidt spoke to Bloomberg Wednesday about his company’s rivalry with Apple. When asked about Apple’s desirability factor, he replied “Samsung had these products a year ago.”
The Motorola-made Nexus is also rumored to be called the Nexus X, following on the heels of Motorola Mobility’s naming scheme for its Moto X. The device follows a numeric naming scheme that began with LG Electronics’ Nexus 4 (2012) and Nexus 5 (2013).
A report in April from The Information’s Amir Efrati about an Android Silver retail program (that has since reportedly been put on hold) led to speculation about the future of the Nexus program. Evan Blass, a noted gadget spoilsport known for revealing unannounced devices as @evleaks on Twitter, said at the time that the Nexus program was dead, and the Nexus 6 would become a Sprint exclusive.