Nintendo has been doing an excellent job of building momentum for itself ever since its excellent showing at E3 this year–and the good news just keeps coming with the announcement of 2 new 3DS models coming to Japan on October 11th. Both the 3DS and 3DS XL will be getting a makeover, with the biggest changes coming in the form of a 2nd analog stick, larger screens, improved processor, Micro SD slot, NFC and improved battery life. The bad news? All markets other than Japan will have to air until next year to get their hands on one. For more info, you can read the full story at Joystiq.com.
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By Marc Aflalo /
As expected Apple confirmed its September 9th media event noting “Wish we could say more” as the invitation tagline. The event will take place at 10:00 AM Pacific Time at the Flint Center for the Performing Arts on the campus of De Anza College in Cupertino.
By James Rogerson /
Google has done well with its Nexus line, particularly the Nexus 4 and Nexus 5, which delivered high end smartphone specs on a budget and both versions of the Nexus 7, which did the same for slates. So it’s no surprise that the company is seemingly looking at adding another device into the mix, specifically the Nexus 8.
Numerous mentions of the device, which may be closer to 9 inches than 8, have popped up over the last few months, alternately referring to it as the Nexus 8, Nexus 9 and Volantis, so it’s starting to look like a safe bet that it’s coming in some form.
That still leaves a lot of questions unanswered, such as when it’s arriving, how much it will cost and what its specs will be. But as more news and rumors roll in we’re picking them apart and putting them all in one place (here) so you can learn everything there is to know about the Nexus 8 before it’s announced.
Cut to the chase
- What is it? A new tablet set to fill the gap between the Nexus 7 and the Nexus 10
- When is it out? Possibly August 19, failing that October or November
- What will it cost? Around £275 / $464 / AU$498 is our best guess
Nexus 8 release date and price
We were hoping that the Nexus 8 might show up at Google I/O, but, er, it didn’t. HTC is believed to be behind the tablet, but we’ve yet to see a date when it might show up. Either way, it will probably be Google’s event, not HTC’s.
No other possible release dates have been put forward but if not August perhaps we’ll see it alongside the Nexus 6, which itself is rumored for an October or November debut. A tablet codenamed the HTC ‘Flounder’ has made its way through Wi-Fi certification, and has been listed with different SKUs (unique model identifiers) that mean it will probably come in both Wi-Fi and 4G flavors as usual.
We’re guessing on the price too, but it’s likely to fall somewhere between the Nexus 7 (£199 / $336 / AU$360) and the Nexus 10 (£319 / $538 / AU$578), so maybe it will be around £275 / $464 / AU$498.
Nexus 8 display
Going by the name you’d logically assume that the Nexus 8 would have an 8-inch display, or something very close to that, but in fact it looks like it might stretch to 8.9 inches.
Initial rumors pointed to an LG built device with an 8.3-inch 1920 x 1200 screen. However more recent ones point to an 8.9-inch slate, while LG is seemingly out of the picture, with HTC being the likely maker.
That 8.9-inch size has popped up more than once while the idea of an 8.3-inch slate seems to have disappeared into the ether, so 8.9 inches is looking likely. 8.9 inches might also make more sense, as 8.3 inches isn’t drastically bigger than the Nexus 7. Now, 8.9 inches could encroach on the Nexus 10 but that’s been MIA for a while.
The first resolution rumors for the 8.9-inch size pointed to 2048 x 1440, however @evleaks, who’s shared a number of details on the device and is fairly reliable as tipsters go, claims that the slate is being tested with a 1680 x 1050 screen, but that it will ship with a 2560 x 1600 display, so we could be in for some seriously crisp visuals.
Since this larger screen size was put forward some leaks have started referring to the Nexus 9, but it’s largely thought that the Nexus 8 and 9 are one and the same.
Nexus 8 design
It’s not entirely clear what the Nexus 8 will look like. On the one hand we’ve heard that Google wants a new design for its new slate, which is apparently part of the reason why it’s reportedly teamed up with HTC rather than Asus. But on the other it’s been reported that the Nexus 8 is similar to the Nexus 7.
So we’re not sure what to make of it yet. But it’s looking increasingly likely that HTC is the company behind the tablet, so there’s a good chance that it will have a premium design and perhaps even be carved from aluminium like the HTC One M8.
In fact a leaked specs list obtained by Android Police mentions a zero gap aluminium construction with tapered sides, front-facing stereo speakers, a 0.31-inch thickness and a weight of 418 grams. Sounds good.
We have seen a few possible glimpses of the Nexus 9 too. Our first sign of it was a mystery tablet that appeared late last year in one of Google’s promotional images. It’s not clear what it is but it looks too big to be a Nexus 7 and too small for the Nexus 10, so the Nexus 8 seems logical.
You can’t tell much from the image, but what is clear is that it’s running Android 4.4 KitKat, has slim bezels and on-screen navigation buttons.
That was the last we saw of it for a long time, but more recently a device that’s supposedly the Nexus 8 appeared in photos sent to MyDrivers.com. Sadly it’s in a protective case so it’s hard to make out any details.
It’s popped up again as a render in a document detailing Android L. As it’s a render it could just be a generic slate cooked up for the image, but that would seem an odd move by Google when it could just use one of its real tablets for the picture.
However it’s different to the first image we saw, as the bezels appear bigger and it has front-facing speakers. Though like that image there are on-screen buttons. The front-facing speakers are also reminiscent of HTC’s smartphones and of other rumors about the slate, which adds legitimacy to it, especially given that HTC is looking like the probable manufacturer.
Alongside a specs list for the device, Android Police got hold of an image in a brochure. It’s not very clear, but based on it along with the accompanying information they created the above mock-up of what the slate might actually look like.
However more recent than any of these images was a tweet by @evleaks, claiming that the Nexus 8 will have a silver aluminium unibody and BoomSound speakers, but that all previous images of the device were ‘fake’, so we may not have seen it yet after all.
Or not really anyway, though @evleaks also tweeted an extreme close-up of the back of the Nexus 8, which reveals next to nothing, but highlights two watermarks. One says ‘flounder’ which is a code name that’s been associated with the Nexus 8 in the past and the other mentions Android Silver, which was thought to be a successor to the Nexus program.
Nexus 8 specs
Initial rumors pointed to the Nexus 8 having 2GB of RAM, 16GB of storage and a 4600 mAh battery, but that was back when LG was thought to be making it, so that all seems unlikely now.
Since then rumors have started suggesting an increasingly powerful device. In January we heard that it might come packing a 64-bit quad-core Intel Bay Trail-T processor. Then in June we heard that it would arrive with a 64-bit Qualcomm processor and 3GB of RAM.
Then a specs listing obtained by Android Police pointed to a desktop class NVIDIA Tegra K1 64-bit processor and 2GB of RAM, as well as 8MP and 3MP cameras.
However the most recent rumors, this time from @evleaks, suggest that it will ship with a monstrous 5GB of RAM, alongside the previously rumored 64-bit Tegra K1 processor. With a 64-bit processor it can support that much RAM, but @evleaks does mention that it’s a ‘non-final’ amount, so it may well drop lower before release.
He also claims that it will come with 64GB of storage and is currently equipped with a 5MP camera, which can shoot video in 1080p, though he theorises that it may be upped to 8MP before it launches.
- We’re expecting the iPad Air 2 to make waves this year as well.
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