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Leaked Manual Reveals Details On Google's Nexus 5 177

Posted by timothy
from the leaked-with-big-old-air-quotes dept.
Features of Google's next Nexus phone have finally been outed, along with confirmation that the phone will be built by LG, as a result of a leaked service manual draft; here are some of the details as described at TechCrunch: "The new Nexus will likely be available in 16 or 32GB variants, and will feature an LTE radio and an 8-megapixel rear camera with optical image stabilization (there’s no mention of that crazy Nikon tech, though). NFC, wireless charging, and that lovely little notification light are back, too, but don’t expect a huge boost in longevity — it’s going to pack a sealed 2,300mAh battery, up slightly from the 2100mAh cell that powered last year’s Nexus 4. That spec sheet should sound familiar to people who took notice of what happened with the Nexus 4. Just as that device was built from the foundation laid by the LG Optimus G, the Nexus 5 (or whatever it’s going to be called) seems like a mildly revamped version of LG’s G2."
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Leaked Manual Reveals Details On Google's Nexus 5

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  • by AuMatar (183847) on Monday October 07, 2013 @02:08AM (#45056215)

    Every Nexus device going back the very first has been an existing phone with a few minor upgrades at most and a different set of software installed. Why would anyone expect different this time? My only surprise is that Google hasn't started having their Motorola arm manufacture them yet. Probably due to not wanting to push OEMs to other options.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      I think Google is very smart to use other OEMs, as it gives them more scale to compete, keeping the Android market healthier. Motorola and Samsung (in 2013) don't need it, but LG can certainly do with more scale.

    • Hmmm which phone was the Galaxy Nexus based on, then? The Nexus 4?

    • by Xicor (2738029)
      it isnt designed to be the best android device, it is designed to be a cheap android device
    • by mjwx (966435)

      Every Nexus device going back the very first has been an existing phone with a few minor upgrades at most and a different set of software installed.

      And this is the brilliant part of it.

      Google has zero experience with HW, however they're excellent with simple, functional yet extremely powerful software.

      Samsung, LG, HTC and others make great hardware but shit software with crapily reskinned version of Android and social media up the wazoo. If you wanted something more spartan or something that was easily modifiable on great hardware you wanted a Nexus device.

      However I'm a bit disappointed that we haven't seen anything decent from Moto. Moto make

  • Crazy tech? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Adrian Harvey (6578) on Monday October 07, 2013 @02:12AM (#45056225)

    I haven't been following closely enough to know what the "crazy Nikon tech" is - anyone care to enlighten me? Google doesn't give relevant info...

      • by JYD (996651)
        Sorry wrong link above, but to reiterate, I believe it is the MEMS autofocus that is supposed to be the killer feature.
        • by Nexus7 (2919)

          The rumor about having a MEMS camera was based on someone checking the leaked phone logs, and seeing that the Sony sensor used by the camera was the same sensor used by the company that builds MEMS cameras. In other words, a leap of hope.

    • Camera makers hate her. Find out why she takes such great photos with one crazy tech!

    • by WD (96061)

      If you'd bother to RTFA, you would have noticed that the phrase "crazy Nikon tech" is hyperlinked.

  • by pthisis (27352) on Monday October 07, 2013 @02:43AM (#45056321) Homepage Journal

    the Nexus 5 (or whatever it’s going to be called) seems like a mildly revamped version of LG’s G2.

    No, it really doesn't. The two most-often mentioned features of the G2 are:

    a) The gorgeous 5.2" screen; and
    b) A 3000 mAh battery; and
    c) The rear-panel placement of the only buttons (power/volume), as opposed to the traditional volume rocker on the side that most smartphones have.

    This has none of those--it has a 4.95" screen and a 2300 mAh battery. And the buttons are laid out like a standard smartphone. Those things alone are significant alterations that make these phones different in the most visible and usable ways.

    The G2 also has a 13 megapixel rear camera; this has an 8 mp camera.

    The G2 also has a customized version of Android with knock-on and other features; the Nexus 5, presuming it follows the Nexus pattern, will run a standard Android OS and UI (and get faster OS updates).

    Without digging into it for more than 30 seconds, I see a phone with a different screen, different camera, different battery, different physical button layout, and different UI, and with significantly different physical properties (e.g. wireless charging on the Nexus)--these might be distant cousins, but they are most decidedly not "mildly revamped" versions of the same thing.

    • by AmiMoJo (196126) * <mojoNO@SPAMworld3.net> on Monday October 07, 2013 @03:32AM (#45056481) Homepage

      Wireless charging is a really big deal too. It's the sort of thing that makes you think "how much easier can it be than just plugging a cable in" but when you have it you find really useful.

      I build a charging pad into my car holder so now I don't need to plug in any wires. Audio is bluetooth to the car stereo. No more USB cables trailing across the dash.

      • I have had wireless charging on my Palm Pre for years, its ok but not all that.
        • I have had wireless charging on my Palm Pre for years, its ok but not all that.

          I've got it for our Touchpad that got converted to Android. The kids previously broke the charging port on a Nook Color. The microUSB connector is a nasty little lever due to its thinness and length.

          I'll bet old people with arthritic joints (much less Parkinson's) don't appreciate MicroUSB charging either.

          Now, then, can I get one big mat for all the family gizmos instead of a dozen individual charging mats?

      • by LanMan04 (790429)

        The problem with wireless charging is that a single charge pad costs $50+. A usb cable + wall wart costs $5.

    • But the Nexus 5 will probably be half the price of the G2. And run stock Android and receive updates.

      • by pthisis (27352)

        But the Nexus 5 will probably be half the price of the G2. And run stock Android and receive updates.

        The last sentence is why I wrote "the Nexus 5, presuming it follows the Nexus pattern, will run a standard Android OS and UI (and get faster OS updates)".

        I'm not making a case for either phone being better, simply saying that the idea that one is a mildly tweaked version of the other is laughable.

    • by Nexus7 (2919)

      I hope it isn't a mildly revamped G2! The G@ has a below-average loudspeaker, and call me odd, but I consider a loud speaker to be essential in a phone. I find most reviews of smartphones useless, because they spend over half the time on the camera, software features, plastic vs metal, etc. and maybe one if that, on call quality, and except for 1 or 2 publications, never bother to put a sound meter near the thing. FYI, GSMArena, for one, actually measure the volume.

      • by Entropius (188861)

        I have a Galaxy Nexus, and the call quality is *garbage*. Voices often manage to be both loud enough that they provoke nonlinear garbage from the speaker *and* drowned out by background noise at the same time!

      • by pthisis (27352)

        I hope it isn't a mildly revamped G2! The G@ has a below-average loudspeaker

        There are a lot of decent criticisms of the G2. The SlideAside is pointless (and doesn't work with a ton of common Android apps), the screen is too big for some people, the buttons on the back are something you can adjust to but they're needlessly quirky and more prone to accidentally being pressed in your pocket than side-buttons are. I'm still not sold on having the headphone jack on the bottom instead of the top.

        But the speaker

        • by Nexus7 (2919)

          The sections you quote are for music. Calls are far more important to me, and for this:
                LG G2 65.7 62.2 66.2 Below Average

          • No, the sections I quoted are for the built in headset speaker used for calls. The numbers are all above average for call quality and average for volume. I'm not sure how their subjective judgement said "below average", given that every single one of the objective measurements was average or above. It's not the loudest or best speaker out there, for sure, but it's better than most.

      • Get the HTC One and be quiet then..

      • If you're using the speaker for anything other than a ringing sound to notify you of phone calls or messages then you are doing it wrong.
    • by Nemyst (1383049)
      And before we go overboard, that leak is a draft. There are a few glaringly obvious issues with it, such as listing Bluetooth 3 (instead of 4) and the exact same dimensions as the Nexus 4, as pointed out on here [androidpolice.com]. While I doubt the screen size or the button placement would change, it's plausible that the battery size could.
    • Without digging into it for more than 30 seconds, I see a phone with a different screen, different camera, different battery, different physical button layout, and different UI, and with significantly different physical properties (e.g. wireless charging on the Nexus)--these might be distant cousins, but they are most decidedly not "mildly revamped" versions of the same thing.

      But the screen, camera, battery and buttons are all extras; the point is that at the core of both devices is the LG G2's mainboard with a Snapdragon 800 sitting on it. If I take my desktop box here at work and change the monitor, keyboard and mouse, it's still the same box, and that's pretty much how most of us are viewing the Nexus 5.

      I see this as a good thing, mind you. LG does the low-level stuff well; they just have no idea how to make an interface (either physical or graphical) to save themselves. M

  • by giorgist (1208992) on Monday October 07, 2013 @03:17AM (#45056437)
    It mentions Bluetooth 4 (page 11) as well as 3 (page 8). It has an entry Java "Android do not support JAVA" (Page 11)
    • Amazing that it isn't completely finished and coordinated, yet, huh?

    • by AmiMoJo (196126) *

      Android doesn't support Java. Java is not just the language, it's the APIs as well. Android's version isn't complete or fully compatible with Java, and isn't called Java, and you can't run a Java .jar file on Android.

      From the consumer's point of view their Java apps won't work on Android.

      • by CastrTroy (595695) on Monday October 07, 2013 @10:56AM (#45058879) Homepage
        It would be more correct to say that Java doesn't support Android. Nobody is stopping Oracle from making a version of the JVM that runs on Android. It's not like a walled garden with IOS. I'm sure that with all the emulators on the Google Play store, that Google probably wouldn't care if Oracle put up a working version of the JVM on the store.
        • It would be more correct to say that Java doesn't support Android.

          Why would I try to run Android in Java? Stop being obtusely pedantic. Nobody would say "Java doesn't support Android" when what they mean is "Android doesn't support execution of Java programs".

          • by CastrTroy (595695)
            Android has now control as to whether or not they support execution of Java programs. Unless you want to task them with writing their own JVM. The reason that Java programs don't run under Android is the same reason that MS SQL Server doesn't run on Android. (Java Applications)/(MS SQL Server) doesn't run on Android because (Oracle)/Microsoft) hasn't ported it yet. Android is an operating system. It makes no choices about which applications you choose to run on it. Windows doesn't run Java applications ei
          • by exomondo (1725132)
            I'm not going to suggest GP's explanation is ideal but when you are dealing with explaining the extremely confusing "Android programs are written in Java but Java programs don't run on Android" issue to people, being overly pedantic is probably for the best.
  • We need more memory (Score:5, Informative)

    by ZDroid (2938715) on Monday October 07, 2013 @03:20AM (#45056443) Homepage Journal

    The most of Android users captures high-res photos and high-res videos, downloads movies etc. That things waste memory very easily.

    Here is no 64 GB version, and N5 lacks MicroSD card slot, like the most of new phones.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 07, 2013 @05:22AM (#45056789)

      It's hard to spy on your locally stored content. Why not upload you geotagged videos and pictures to the cloud so we can send you targetted advertising?

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by gbjbaanb (229885)

      more than that, if I want to transfer a few gig of music or movies to my phone, its much easier to slip the sd card out and put it in a reader on my PC. Or better - swap with a sd card that already has the required files present (ie I have 2).

      the other thing that I always worry about is the battery. I have had to reboot my old Galaxy S1 by removing the battery before now. What do I do if it really goes belly up and needs a hard reset?

      • more than that, if I want to transfer a few gig of music or movies to my phone, its much easier to slip the sd card out and put it in a reader on my PC.

        Really? I've always copied them via the network, either from the phone (loads of decent file browsers out there that support SMB, FTP, SFTP) or from the computer (run an FTP server on your phone). The only time I use the cable is when I have to charge my phone.

        • by gbjbaanb (229885)

          I can transfer them over wifi, but its much quicker to do it with the card directly connected to a card reader. ... is what I meat to say.

      • They have hardware reset features that usually involve holding down a couple buttons at once. This is captured by the hardware directly and works even if the phone is soft-bricked.
    • by AmiMoJo (196126) *

      Google want everything to be in the cloud. Any photos or video you take can be automatically uploaded to your Google account, so there is no need to keep them on your phone long term. That's why they don't bother with massive amounts of storage or example - they expect the phone's memory to be mostly used for apps, and some temporary data that gets moved to the cloud.

      • by Entropius (188861)

        I use my storage for things like music. Sure, there are cloud music services, but that only makes sense when pulling things down from the cloud:

        1) is possible everywhere
        2) doesn't drain the battery

    • by Nemyst (1383049)
      Amusing. This is the first Nexus since the S which has doubled storage capacity across the board, and yet the exact same complaints are being levelled against it.
      • Well, 32Gb isn't exactly acres of space these days, but I think it'll be enough for me. 16Gb definitely isn't anymore.

        I do wish they'd use SD cards (ext-formatted, of course) mainly because I'd know at least some of my data was safe if my phone ever died or bricked. But I realise it's never going to happen with a Nexus, and I'm more-or-less happy to pay that price.

  • by Utopia (149375) on Monday October 07, 2013 @03:32AM (#45056483)

    Interestingly, the manual radio says "FM Radio - Yes".
    I don't recollect a Nexus device with a functioning FM Radio.

    • by Sinical (14215)

      The Nexus One has FM radio hardware (accessible if you install Cyanogen -- I am not sure if any stock Android builds enabled support). I kept mine after getting a Nexus 4 for this very reason.

      • Re:FM Radio (Score:5, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 07, 2013 @05:03AM (#45056749)

        One of the radio chips in these phones does FM because it was a throwaway feature, "Hey, since we've done all this already we could build an FM radio, it'd add like 1% to the transistor budget" "Sure, we'll add it to the feature list". So CyanogenMod enables that, because why not. In some jurisdictions being able to receive FM radio is a legal problem (no, that doesn't make any sense, why would it need to?), so since FM radio is rarely a deal breaker for people buying phones the stock Android leaves it disabled.

        This happened in the late MP3 days as well, cheap Far Eastern suppliers would build a generic chipset that played say six audio formats, supported five different common models of LCD panel, and so on, and they'd throw in FM radio because it was easy. But then brand name companies would ask for a firmware version that removed the FM radio and added their branding because in one country they ship to FM radios are a legal problem and they'd rather not have two variants of "their" MP3 player.

        So you'd be able to buy like a Hitachi MP3 player for $20 that claimed to play MP3, WAV and WMA and nothing else, but if you flashed it with firmware from the supposedly unrelated $15 MP3 player from some Taiwanese novelty electronics firm you've never heard of you'd get all the same plus Ogg Vorbis, AU and AAC, an FM radio, a three level backlight instead of two levels, but now your volume buttons work upside down...

        • So what you're saying is that FM was like the Bluetooth of the 90s/00s. Everywhere and mostly useless. But neat.

        • by AmiMoJo (196126) *

          A lot of manufacturers disable FM because they want you use to services like Google Music or Spotify. Often the phone comes pre-loaded with a music streaming app.

  • OIS (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Lumpy (12016)

    "there’s no mention of that crazy Nikon tech, though"

    You do realize that Canon invented it and Nikon copied it right?
    Canon OIS is still the single most superior OIS out there. Nikon is good but nothing like what the Canon system can do, mostly because they have nearly a decade on them in R&D.

    • by Entropius (188861)

      I dunno, have you used Nikon's newer stuff? I shoot birds with the new Nikon 80-400. I can get sharp shots handheld down to 1/40 sec most of the time and 1/20 sec much of the time. (This is on a highly-demanding sensor, 24MP DX, and on truly static targets; these speeds aren't practical for actual birds.) Can you do that with Canon's new IS? I don't know; i only know the performance of the older IS on my father's 100-400.

      Another extremely good IS system is the sensor-shift IS used by Olympus in the E-M5 and

      • by Lumpy (12016)

        Their newer stuff is fantastic, but also the Canon newer stuff is as well the gap is closing incredibly fast.

  • The Nexus 4 had inferior color rendering to the LG Optimus G, even if the screen and GPUs of both phones are exactly the same. You had to root the N4 and recalibrate the colors just to get close to the rendering quality of the G2.


    I hope Kitkat gives users the capability to calibrate color settings in the same manner that LG flat panel TV's can be calibrated.
  • By 2016... (Score:2, Offtopic)

    by brian0918 (638904)
    What do you think will be the inception date for the Nexus-6 Android, and will it come with a built-in expiration date of a few years? Will you be able to jailbreak it, or is it not possible for the coding sequence to be revised once it's been established?
    • by Cederic (9623)

      This is an excellent point. We need to petition Google to skip straight to the Nexus 7 just to avoid any confusion. Or mutinies in the off-world colonies.

  • Does it support VP9 and/or HEVC in hardware?
    Does it receive ATSC television signals?
    Useable voice recognition?

    Yawn, tell me when a device gets new capabilities rather than just larger numbers in front of "GB", "pixels", "inches", or "mAh".
  • I've had bad luck with LG products so I guess I'll take my money elsewhere or see if a google play version of the moto x comes out.

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