Although the Nexus name has been prominently displayed on devices since the original Nexus One debuted in 2009, Google will instead put its name front and center for all to see. And even more telling, Google reportedly won’t even give a shout out to the company that actually is designing and producing this year’s batch of smartphones: HTC.
This latest report could also coalesce around previous rumors that Google would launch its own self-branded smartphone later this year and Google CEO Sundar Pichai’s assertion that the company would “invest more effort” to be “more opinionated about the design of [its] phones.”
But a branding shift isn’t the only thing that smartphone watchers can expect to see when the new Nougat devices arrive this fall. Google will also make more customizations to Android, instead of shipping a bone stock version of the operating system with the smartphones. Pichai hinted at this move back in early June, stating that the company would “thoughtfully add more features on top of Android on Nexus phones” and that “there is a lot of software innovation to be had.”
But even if Google starts mucking around with the “vanilla” Android experience that so many people love, it won't come at the expense of clutter and duplicate apps as we often see with Samsung devices and TouchWiz.