nexus 9 volantis tablet
Purported images of the HTC Nexus 9 (Volantis), which is said to have a "zero-gap construction" between the display's glass and an aluminum unibody, something that would make it more like the iPad than any earlier Nexus device. Google Inc. / Android Police

Despite having not released a tablet since 2013 and early reports that its Nexus line was dead, Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOGL) has plans to release a super-fast Nexus 9 tablet boasting the same processor that NASA sent to the space station. Nvidia Corp. (NASDAQ:NVDA) accidentally confirmed the Nexus 9 tablet in a legal complaint that was spotted by gadget site BSN on Wednesday.

The Nexus 9 will be made by the HTC Corp. (TPE:2498) reportedly out of a single piece of aluminum, much like the Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPad, and was originally due for a September release, according to the documents. However, it is unclear if those plans have changed. The silicon manufacturer revealed the Nexus 9 after filing a complaint against Qualcomm Inc. (NASDAQ:QCOM) and Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. (KRX:005930) with the International Trade Commission for infringing on intellectual property related to its graphics processors, or GPUs.

Nexus 9 HTC google 6 release date
During its annual developers conference in June, Google accidentally released this image showing a tablet larger than its Nexus 5 smartphone, but too big to be the Nexus 7. Google Inc.

The document, which has since been removed from Nvidia’s site, said the “HTC Nexus 9, expected in the third quarter of 2014, is also expected to use the Tegra K1” processor. Nvidia’s Tegra K1 mobile processor was also rumored in June to be powering an HTC-made Nexus tablet, code-named the “HTC Volantis.”

The HTC Nexus 9 was then said to be due for release in the fourth quarter. The Tegra K1 is said to be a powerful chip, boasting “PC-like” performance in a small-form factor.

htc nexus 9 nvidia leak
Nvidia revealed in a complaint against Qualcomm and Samsung that a Nexus 9 tablet, made by HTC for Google, would contain its Tegra K1 chip. Nvidia Corporation

The HTC Nexus 9 that leaked on Google’s site showed a device that looked like a cross between the Nexus 5 phone and Nexus 7 tablet, made out of aluminum with what Android Police called “zero-gap construction.” The Nexus 9 was then said to have an 8.9-inch display with better than high-definition (2048 x 1440) resolution, with the front-facing stereo speakers common on many HTC devices.

The HTC Nexus 9’s price reportedly starts at $399 for a Wi-Fi model with 16 GB of storage, with models that contain LTE (long-term evolution) connectivity going for more than $600. Google launched a Nexus 7 tablet in 2013, but has never updated its Nexus 10, eschewing the annual hardware update cycle for its tablets.