2016 Google Nexus release date: Nexus Marlin and Sailfish scrapped in lieu of Google rebranding

(Creative Commons/Robert Nyman)Google at the Slush Conference

The past few weeks have seen the release of several reports and leaks regarding this year's Google Nexus devices, namely the Google Nexus Marlin and the Nexus Sailfish. The majority of the reports has suggested that the devices have already been developed and are about ready to be released very soon. However, some new reports have suggested that the Marlin and Sailfish monikers may have been scrapped altogether.

According to the latest reports regarding the two new HTC-made handsets, Google has apparently decided to scrap the entire "Nexus" name. The company will still be releasing the two smartphones on the market, but they will apparently be coming out with an entirely different branding. The Nexus name itself has always been a reference to the device that is going to introduce each and every new version of the company's operating system (OS), Google Android. This year will apparently be different as Google is set to introduce a new brand that will be putting their name front and center.

The reports have revealed that Google will also be redesigning the "vanilla" Android experience on the new handset, which will differentiate their brand from other Android smartphones running the new version of the OS. Some of these changes had apparently been leaked through previously uncovered images that showed the OS sporting new features and design changes. These changes include new button layouts and color schemes that are quite different from the ones seen on the Android 7.0 Nougat update that was released for the Nexus 6P and the Nexus 5X.

For now, there are still no official announcements on what the new branding will be and what both the Marlin and Sailfish will be called when they are released. Be that as it may, it seems like the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 will be the first device this year to be sporting the Android 7.1 Nougat OS out of the box instead of a Nexus smartphone.