It seems the long hard wait for the Verizon Galaxy Nexus is drawing to a close. Verizon continues to hold its silence, but the phone has already surfaced in some Best Buy stores and the next stop appears to be Costco on Dec.15, according to the stores internal pricing guides.

Engadget has obtained pictures of the guide that states the phone will be available in stores from Dec.15 marked with a 10 percent discounted $290 price tag on a two year contract.

Costco is, however, an authorized Verizon retailer, which could mean the phone will be delayed again depending on Verizon's policy and game plan.

Not only has the carrier kept quiet about the official release date, but they haven't issued an explanation as to why the U.S release is taking so long, especially after the phone came out in Europe some three weeks ago.

The  Verizon Galaxy Nexus has already had four rumored released dates but all have been a no-show, which has disconcerted many fans and led many to pursue the option of an iPhone 4S.

Last week a few lucky people waltzed into Best Buy stores and purchased the phone. It appears some stores didn't get the memo and the phone was readily on display for customers to buy and flaunt all over the Web.

Photos sent in by customers can be found on Droid Life. The screen shots indicate that the phone comes with three different pre-loaded Verizon apps including: My Verizon Mobile account management tool, Verizon Login, and VZ Backup Assistant.

Rumors surrounding the phones delay suggest the main cause is Verizon's alleged dispute with Google over the Google Wallet feature.

Apparently Verizon has asked the search-engine giant not to include its highly anticipated Google Wallet feature in its latest product.

The Google Wallet allows shoppers to make purchases and use coupons online with their phones. Upon checkout, all customers need to do is sign on and click the Buy Button. The virtual wallet can also be used in stores that have pay-pass symbols -- and with one simple tap from phone to reader, hundreds of purchases can be made.

It is believed, however, that Verizon is reluctant to take on this new feature after teaming up with AT&T, T-Mobile and Isis in a joint-venture that will supply a digital payment service, similar to that of the Google Wallet.

Verizon has denied these claims saying that they are not blocking the wallet due to competitive interests; instead, they are looking to find ways to integrate the feature into a new, secure, proprietary hardware in their phones, which again could be a reason for the delay.

For those who can't wait any longer for the phone, it might be an idea to take a trip to Canada. The HSPA+ version of the phone is available on Mobile Canada and Bell Canada, but an unlocked version on sale for $649.99 can be used with any sim-card, including AT&T, T-mobile.

The phone comes with AMOLED 4.65 inch screen with 720p resolution. Its 8.94mm thinness gives the phone a sleek finish and weighs only 135g. 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.


HSDPA speed: 21 Mbps