It is officially Nexus rumor season. After last week's "Google Phone" rumor, this week we've got renders of what the 2016 Nexus phones will look like. Android Police—which has a great track record when it comes to Nexus leaks—has created a render of the device "based on evidence from [its] source." Previous rumors said that HTC would be building two Nexus devices for Google, a 5-inch device codenamed "Sailfish" and a 5.5-inch device called "Marlin." The report says this render is meant to represent both devices—a bigger and smaller phone of the same design.
Usually Nexus devices are co-branded by Google and the OEM, but Android Police's render doesn't have an HTC logo. The site says "the 'G' logo on the back of the device may or may not be part of the final design," and "it remains unclear to us if the final design will include an HTC logo, but we are inclined to believe the answer is no." That "Google Phone" rumor from the Telegraph last week said Google was making a phone separate from the Nexus line that would be self-branded, but maybe there isn't a third phone and the Nexus line is just getting a rebrand.
The Android Police report says the phone has an aluminum body with a crazy glass or plastic back window that takes up a third of the phone. The render shows the flash on the left side of the camera with three mysterious holes to the right of it. Place your bets as to what those might do: a secondary microphone? Color sensor? Laser autofocus? All of the above?
Beyond those details, there's a rear fingerprint sensor just like the 5X and 6P. Additionally, check out those crazy system buttons. Multi-window in the Android N developer preview has added some serious extra functionality to Android's system buttons, and in the final version these might be getting a visual redesign, too. Android Police has been tracking both this solid white version and a more Googley version with the usual four colors peeking out from behind the home button.
Google CEO Sundar Pichai has said Google "could be more opinionated" on the design of the Nexus devices. If this render turns out to be accurate, apparently Google's opinion was "make an iPhone." The devices should be out sometime this year.