Monday , May 1 2017

Rumour: MediaTek based sub-US$100 Nexus phone being worked on

Nexus - Logo
It’s that time of year, now is generally when rumours surrounding the next Nexus smartphone, which is generally released every year in October/November each year, start heating up. This years rumour has already seen a hint that LG will be tipped to make the Nexus phone for the third year in a row, but now a new rumour out of China is saying that Google is looking to bring a sub-US$100 Nexus phone to market.

While the Nexus line of phones is considered cheap, while still including fairly high-end hardware, apparently Google is going to look at a completely budget Nexus phone which includes budget hardware. The super cheap phone would require the use of cheaper parts and chip manufacturer MediaTek could be the ones to give them the heart of the phone.

MediaTek has created some waves last year by delivering the worlds first true Octa-Core mobile chip in the 28nm MT6592. The MT6592 showed impressive results compared to the Quad-Core Snapdragon 800 in benchmarks. Using a Heterogeneous Multi-Processing model from ARMs BIG.little architecture, it used eight cortex A7 cores clocked at 1.7 to 2GHz. So, they have the hardware, and they seem to be able to deliver on price.

But the question is, will Google partner with MediaTek to produce a Nexus phone? A recent story on XDA-Developers pointed out some worrying practices that MediaTek have surrounding the distribution of source code for devices running MediaTek hardware. Apparently MediaTek are asking for a fee from developers to access said source code. A practice that Open-source advocate Google will surely frown upon.

The idea of a cost effective smartphone for emerging markets was what the Motorola Moto G was created for, back when Motorola was still a Google Company. Indeed, the concept of an even cheaper version of the Moto G was discussed by CEO Dennis Woodside last year in an interview, where he said he envisaged Motorola could eventually create a sub-US$50 smartphone. Whether soon-to-be Motorola owner Lenovo, chooses to pursue this goal or whether this was a Google goal which is now coming through in their Nexus line post-Motorola sale, remains to be seen.

The Nexus line is already ‘cheap’ price wise anyway, while still retaining excellent build quality and using high end materials. Whether Google wishes to brave a world where the Nexus line is associated with cheap components, build quality and overall ‘cheapness’ is uncertain, but I certainly hope they don’t.

Would a super cheap Nexus phone appeal to you?

Source: mtks.
Via: GForGames.

Daniel Tyson   Editor at large

Dan is a die-hard Android fan. Some might even call him a lunatic. He's been an Android user since Android was a thing, and if there's a phone that's run Android, chances are he owns it (his Nexus collection is second-to-none) or has used it.

Dan's dedication to Ausdroid is without question, and he has represented us at some of the biggest international events in our industry including Google I/O, Mobile World Congress and IFA.

  • whispy_snippet


    But it wouldn’t be for developed markets so it’s only logical it doesn’t appeal to me.

  • Greg

    I think it would be great. Then people who can’t/don’t want to (eg in developing countries) spend what the current Nexus devices would be able to experience a good version of Android rather than the sluggish, skinned and otherwise bastardized versions that are currently the only options available in that segment of the market.

    And I think your concern for the Nexus brand is a little silly, in my experience the general public still hasn’t any idea what it is. Plus I think the association wouldn’t be cheap but rather good value which is the whole concept of the Nexus line. I don’t think LG or Samsung’s brand is damaged by making the cheap pieces of garbage that they make at the bottom end of the market, people know they’re rubbish because they’re cheap.

    • Enrico

      Great ideas. For example in South East Asia, the current Nexus 5 costs more than 1 month wages for most people.

  • Harpersneil

    I’ve never associated Nexus with Budget or Cheap. To me, the draw has always been an unfettered version of Android. Android as it was intended. I’d happily pay $700 for a Nexus phone, even if there was a $100 version available.

    • whispy_snippet

      Nexus devices represent value for money and stock Android. The ideal combination as far as I’m concerned. I’d be happy to spend much more on a mobile device if it was actually worth it – but Google has repeatedly demonstrated you can have a top tier user experience for half the price of the competition.

      Why would I spend several hundred dollars more for things like gimmicky dual cameras; temperamental heart rate sensors; or bloated, resource sapping skins? I’ve said before that even if the Nexus was priced like its competitors I’d still go Nexus. The user experience and performance is that much better.

      The latest stock camera update has only reinforced my position that the Nexus 5 is the best phone you can get. It’s bordering on the perfect device. Sure, I can appreciate that some power users might like things like replaceable batteries and SD cards, but this sort of thing is generally unnecessary for most people – and yet they’re often convinced otherwise.

      • Harpersneil

        Like you, I love my Nexus 5 (and Nexus 7). But I’d love a Nexus device with a much better camera, and an SD card slot. Just saying!

        • whispy_snippet

          I think the N5 camera is going to get rapidly better over the next few months. There’s nothing fundamentally wrong with the hardware and with Google finally paying attention to the camera app I’m optimistic things are going to keep getting better.

          SD card… Well yeah. Never been an issue for be but I can appreciate some people want this. But that said, I wouldn’t hold your breath. External storage support simply isn’t part of Google’s strategy.

          • Harpersneil

            What d’ya know… just launched the camera app and it’s had a nice update! Go Google!
            I totally understand why most people don’t care for SD card support. Most people I know barely know what an SD card is!

          • whispy_snippet

            The new camera app is fantastic!

        • And better battery life! Where my Nexus 5 battery dies my Galaxy S5 still has 50% left!

          • whispy_snippet

            I find that hard to believe.

      • derp

        The stock nexus aosp software isnt perfect. There is a reason the rom and xposed community is so large for the device.

        Camera is still pretty poor compared to the competition (you can get some good shots but its still quite far behind the competition focus speed is like a snail compared to others. Its more than enough for most people though) speakers are just above being terrible, battery is hit or miss and lgs build is pretty average (but googles return policy and warranty is fantastic so its not that much of an issue)

        Its a great device for its price but once thats out the equation the premium phones are still a few steps ahead.

        • whispy_snippet

          The build quality is fantastic. No flex, solid, clean design. The speaker is average I’ll give you that though. However it comes back to my point that most people don’t really need a lot of the extras they’re convinced to pay for. How often does anyone use their phone as a party stereo system? Anyone even remotely interested in sharing their music will have it connected to some decent speakers. The only phone with even slightly usable speakers is the One.

          Going back to the camera, the app itself isn’t perfect but it’s just seen a big improvement with the latest update. From a hardware perspective the camera is excellent. An 8mp OIS sensor is a great balance of pixel size and low light capability. It just needs some more software tuning such Google is finally doing.

          The word “premium” has always been code for “stacked with unnecessary additions”. There’s nothing on the GS5, for example, that would convince me to pay more. It’s slower, uglier, and has a terrible user interface compared to the N5. The One M8 has a gimmicky dual camera and a metal chassis that will scratch easily while inhibiting reception and GPS performance.

          Again, I can appreciate there are a could of things like removable batteries and SD card support that a minority desire. But most people don’t need, want or even use these features so why buy them?

  • vijay alapati

    Moto g…..i mean nexus g

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