Despite widespread rumors that Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) would unveil both the Nexus 5 and Android 4.4 KitKat on Oct. 15, the company’s new handset was a no-show on Tuesday, and the latest round of speculation suggests that the U.S. government shutdown might have played a role in the delay.
A report from CNET said that due to the government shutdown, Google might have failed to obtain all the regulatory approvals required to launch the Nexus 5. There is also speculation that the shutdown could have prevented Google from getting an approval on its “Nexus Gem,” the smart watch that the company might have wanted to launch alongside the Nexus 5 and Android 4.4 KitKat.
The report also points to the possibility that Google may want to release the new device within the next four weeks to ensure that it is available before Black Friday and the beginning of this year’s holiday-shopping season.
Meanwhile, another report from Android Geeks suggested that Google may introduce a new LTE-enabled Nexus 4 alongside the pricier Nexus 5 in coming weeks. Citing an insider source, the report said that Nexus 5 could be priced at $399 for 16GB and $449 for 32GB, while a LTE Nexus 4 would cost $299 for the 16GB model and $349 for the 32GB version of the smartphone.
Some earlier rumors had suggested that the Nexus 5 may be priced at $299. However, the Android Geeks report indicated this tag could be the entry-level price for the LTE Nexus 4, while the Nexus 5 could cost $100 more.
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Although the $399 price point for the Nexus 5 seems quite likely, the speculation about releasing both Nexus 5 and a new Nexus 4 rings odd as the idea does not seem to fit into the objective of the Nexus program “to offer leading-edge Android reference designs.” In addition, Google also cut the price of the Nexus 4 in August by $100, sparking rumors that the company wanted to clear its old inventory before the next-generation Nexus 5 could be launched sometime in October or November.
As for the features and specifications of the Nexus 5, a leaked document claimed to be the service manual of the handset suggested that the device could feature a 4.95-inch 1080p IPS TFT display, 16GB and 32GB internal storage options, 2GB of RAM, an 8-megapixel OIS rear camera, a 1.3-megapixel front camera, near-field communication and wireless charging. The device is also rumored to be powered by Snapdragon 800 quad-core CPU (MSM8947) at 2.3GHz and a 2300mAh battery.