Finally, a sight we have all been waiting for: the Galaxy Nexus in what appears to be Verizon's red retail packaging.

width=630

Photo:XDA

Photos published by XDA developers suggest that the phone really could be in stores sooner than we think. The images depict the Galaxy Nexus nestled in a white box surrounded by a red frame. The box itself doesn't have the Verizon logo on it (yet) but the Verizon Galaxy Nexus manual comes as a part of the package, signaling that the logo will be printed soon.

The past week has been treacherous for U.S Galaxy nexus hopefuls. The phone bearing Verizon's red logo has debuted online, flaunting all its specs including speed tests and hot accessories, but still no official statement has come from Verizon as to when the phone will officially be launched.

On Monday, a member of Android Central, Jephine, published photos of exclusive accessories for the Verizon Galaxy Nexus, suggesting that the phone would probably be out by the rumored date of Dec.8. But now with new pictures of the phone in what appears to be retail packaging speculations have started about an even earlier release.

Galaxy Nexus fans in the U.S expected a Thanksgiving launch for the Verizon exclusive phone, after it debuted in Europe two weeks ago, but to much disappointment the phone never came. Just two days later the phone miraculously appeared in a Best Buy add with a Nov.27 release, but that too was a no show.

Meanwhile, New Yorkers got a sneak peak of the phone on Saturday at the Samsung Experience event, but none of the sample phones contained sim-cards making it impossible to test out the phone's performance. Engadget tried a speed test using Verizon LTE MiFi, which gave downloaded speeds from 5000-7000 kbps, nothing compared to expected speeds of at least 8Mbps  on Verizon's 4G network.

Meanwhile, a user on My Droid World posted a screenshot of an apparent Verizon Galaxy Nexus heralding Android Version 4.1. The Nexus Prime is the first phone to support the new Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich platform, which was designed to bridge the gap between Android 2.x and the 3.0 honeycombs.

The phone comes with AMOLED 4.65 inch screen with a 720p resolution. Its 9.54mm thinness gives the phone a sleek finish and weighs only 135g, slightly lighter than the GSM version of the phone. Despite being so slender and light the phone comes with 16.30 GB or 32GB of storage and 1GB  of RAM, giving it twice the memory of the iPhone 4S.

Other features:

5-megapixel camera: LED flash

Front-facing camera: 1.3MP unit

Video: 1080p

Connectivity: Bluetooth 3.0, WLAN, 3G.

Wi-Fi-802.11n

HSDPA speed: 21 Mbps

width=2width=630

Photo: XDA