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Android Ice Cream Sandwich to rain on iOS5 parade

Google's much-awaited Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich tablet/smartphone hybrid OS is set to put a damper on the launch of arch-rival Apple's iPhone 5 with iOS5, following the release of a blog post yesterday prepping developers for its imminent launch.

Google chairman Eric Schmidt revealed in an interview in an interview with Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff earlier in September that the new OS would make an appearance in October or November.

Now, the search giant is paving the way for that launch. In a blog post published yesterday, Scott Main, lead tech writer for Google's official Android developer site wrote a reminder that apps currently being developed for the existing tablet platform, Android 3.0 Honeycomb, would need to tweak them to specifically disable them from running on 4.0 devices.

The posting offered a few other tips and tricks for developers on designing the Action Bar widget for smaller handsets.

Ice Cream Sandwich is the first version of Android to merge tablet and smartphone functions, enabling developers to create a single, scalable version of an app that would work on small or large-screened devices.

The appearance of Main's post prompted Android news site Android and Me to speculate that the Android software development kit (SDK) must be nearing release - enabling developers to get cracking on new Ice Cream Sandwich apps.