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Nexus Prime/Galaxy Nexus launch gets delayed

Samsung and Google have cancelled plans to launch the next Android 'hero phone,' the Nexus Prime, and Android 'Ice-Cream Sandwich' later this month in a last-minute decision.

Rumours have been spreading that Samsung planned to show off the Nexus Prime handset, the first device to run the 'Honeycomb'-inspired 'Ice-Cream Sandwich' build of Google's popular Android platform, at its Samsung Unveiled event later this month.

With images and specifications for the device already leaked, it appeared to be a done deal - but a last-minute decision has stayed the company's hand, with the launch now postponed temporarily.

"Samsung and Google decide to postpone the new product announcement at CTIA Fall," the two companies explained in a statement to gadget site Pocket-lint - despite having never actually announced the impending launch in the first place. "We agree that it is just not the right time to announce a new product. New date and venue will be shortly announced."

The reasoning behind the delay appears to be Apple-related: while the launch of a revamped iPhone 4S was unlikely to cause many ripples, failing as it does to equal the specifications of Samsung's existing flagship Galaxy S II Android handset, the death of Steve Jobs is a larger matter. Although not official, it seems likely that the delay is simply a mark of respect to a man who, many agree, was instrumental in the growth of personal computing into the form it takes today.

This does leave Google and Samsung's mobile network partners, all of whom will be keen to shout their support for Google's latest own-brand handset from the rooftops, facing an uncertain delay - but it's one that is likely necessary if Samsung doesn't want to be seen in a bad light.

UPDATE 1538:

It looks like Android fans won't have too long to wait: TNW reports that Samsung is rescheduling the launch for the 27th of October, to take place in London.