Nexus 6 Release Date Nears as Google Now Launcher Update Hits All Nexus, Google Play Devices

By @ibtimesau on

Google once again gave out clues that the Nexus 6 release date is fast approaching - the latest signal is the upgraded Google Now Launcher that is now available for all Nexus and Google Play devices.

The latest development means owners of the Nexus 4, Nexus 7 (1 and 2), Nexus 10 and the Google Play-exclusive HTC One, Galaxy S5and LG G Pad can readily chew in the application provided the devices have been running on the latest KitKat 4.4.

Note that the launcher was previously exclusive to the LG-built Nexus 5.

According to Android Police, the upgrade is limited, for now, to Nexus and GPE device owners so Android fans outside of the mentioned sphere are out of luck for now. The report did not indicate if other Android-based smartphones and tablets will follow suit soon.

What they will be missing out for now are the following features that according to BGR are listed by Google on the Play Store:

o   Google Now on device home screen that allows easier access to information.

o   Ok Google that permits device owners to send text messages, get directions or play a song. The same service is currently limited to the US, UK and Canada.

o   Faster search facility.

o   Reade access to popular Google products and services such as like Gmail, YouTube and Maps.

o   Expanded viewing area that also highlights the translucent status and navigation bars. Also the device wallpaper is more pixel-rich, the rendering of which will depend hardware support.

o   Dynamic wallpaper selector that allows the use of local or cloud-based images.

But what really excites about the new upgrade from Google is the underlying implication. In the past, as the company jumps from the old services to new, such move was quickly followed by the arrival of fresh offerings

In this particular case, it is highly likely that with the new Google Now Launcher, Google is preparing the way for the next Android build, which experts said would be the Android 4.5 or Lollipop. Likely from KitKat to Lollipop, all Android devices will enjoy unbridled access to the Launcher app.

Or more preferred, the Nexus 6 is on its way to the market and very soon as Google accelerates the upgrade cycle for all existing Nexus and Google Play devices.

At the moment, the debate is still on which manufacturer would issue the next Nexus smartphone. Some rumours suggest it will remain with LG as the South Korean device maker was fairly successful in assembling the Nexus 4 and Nexus 5.

However, there are talks the Nexus 6 will shift to Motorola or Lenovo as the latter recently acquired Motorola Mobility from Google, which would likely prompt the Internet search giant to award the project to an entity closer to home.

As the speculations heat up, the Nexus 6 release date is more likely to happen between July and October 2014 with a powerhouse 8-core 64-bit Snapdragon 810 processing as among the banner specs and features.

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