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Tech Fans Await The Fish Main To Google's Nougat Starter

02/09/2016 14:34 | Updated 02 September 2016

The release of Google's Android Nougat has come and gone.

Its brand-spanking new operating system was expected to emerge flanked by the two recently developed HTC Nexus phones, codenamed Sailfish and Marlin.

So where are they?

Instead of showing off its new wares, Google proved itself to be a tech titan with style, and subverted the launch norm with a surprise non-release.

Juicy rumours about the new Nexus phones have been hanging enticingly on the grapevine for months, but like Tantalus before them, tech-fans have found that the digital fruit is always just out of reach.

Sailfish and Marlin show yourselves!

It's possible that they don't exist, but a set of new Nexus phones would make sense in the wake of a new OS. A delayed release date would certainly work well as a sneaky ploy to steal the limelight from Apple's iPhone 7, but it's cutting it fine as that's due next week.

Or it could be that we're fishing for the handsets in the wrong pond, and that we've mistaken them for the non-Nexus devices that HTC is developing. Perhaps we should be readying ourselves for the arrival of the HTC Desires - I've heard rumblings in the tech community.

So either Google has postponed the launch date, or the new Nexus phones are not coming at all.

But for the moment, let's hope they are. What can we expect?

The other rumoured codenames, T50 and T55, seem to hint at their respective screen inches (so maybe we should take 'Sailfish' and 'Marlin' to indicate waterproofing?).

Price-wise, we can only go on their predecessors. The Nexus 5X sells for prices starting at £299 and the Nexus 6P at £499, so costing could be kept within those fairly reasonable boundaries.

The Marlin will reportedly boast metal casing, while Sailfish is thought to be mainly plastic, but both will have access to unlimited photo and video storage with Google Photos.

And while both will operate on the newly released system, their updated home screens will feature a new app drawer, search widget and Now pane.

It's hard not to predict a performance and power efficiency riot. Sailfish is thought to run the Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor (the logical step up from the Nexus 6P's Snapdragon chip, the 810), which, combined with digital signal processor Hexagon 680 DPS and a quad-core Kryo CPU, means almost double the performance and power efficiency of its predecessors.

According to the leaks received by the GFXBench graphics testing benchmark database, Sailfish should also sport a full-HD screen, 12mp rear and 8mp front cameras, 4GB of RAM and 32GB of storage.

And with the Marlin featuring the new Qualcomm Snapdragon 821, which is apparently faster than the iPhone 6s Plus (bringing it in just being Samsung Galaxy S7), we could have a pair of very speedy and powerful devices in our hands.

Rumours will continue to abound, so keep an eye out for ripples in the water. Sailfish and Marlin should come up for air eventually.

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