Ice Cream Sandwich supposedly seen in short video - is it the real deal?

So here's the story -- supposedly an anonymous fellow purchased a Nexus S on eBay, and to his surprise found it running Ice Cream Sandwich.  There are quite a few visual differences, namely a new launcher style, a new "Google Apps" folder, a new notification bar, and a new lockscreen.  There's also what looks to be a panorama feature in the camera, and the "Movie Studio" icon in the app drawer.  Everything is nice and fluid -- at least everything we get to see.

Here's where things get sticky -- those things can all be (and have been) faked.  Would it be easy?  Hell, no, but it's entirely possible.  With ICS coming sometime soon, this very well could be a development unit that somehow slipped away from Mountain View -- we've been expecting a leak or two for a while now.  But we have to hold off judgement and will let you guys decide and discuss yourselves.  Be sure to hit the source link and check out the video after the break if you haven't already.

Source: Engadget

Thanks everyone who sent this in!

Jerry Hildenbrand
Senior Editor — Google Ecosystem

Jerry is an amateur woodworker and struggling shade tree mechanic. There's nothing he can't take apart, but many things he can't reassemble. You'll find him writing and speaking his loud opinion on Android Central and occasionally on Twitter.

  • Don't all versions of android in the about section say the android version as 2.3.5 instead of just ice cream sandwich.
  • a dev build might not since the names are internal code names (well originally that was their purpose) so it saying that is possible. also I remember early picture leaks that said the same thing so either it's the same people leaking and they're doing a good job with continuity or it's legit. I guess we'll find out next week at CTIA. :)
  • There are so many things here that points out that this is Legit, but at the same time there are so many things that prove this is could also be fake. The time is near, and I wont judge anything until Google announces it themselves
  • When I first saw this vid I thought it had to be legit, and wasn't overly impressed by what it showed to be ICS, was hoping for a bit more eye candy, whats in this vid looks to much of a hack in slash, take this bit and that bit of Honeycombe dont change anything just drop it on and leave it at that...but then I came across an Ice Cream Sandwich Launcher in the Market, which from the images of the app look a lot like whats in this video. After finding this launcher, I'm gonna hold out any further judgement on ICS until October 11th. Come on Big G and Samsung pull something major out of the bag.
  • I hope its real because i got a nexus s and can't wait to get the update!
  • Wow? Is this it? Honestly, i was expecting a whole lot more, not something that looks like a honeycomb theme, you can download this from the android market, LMAO
  • Really? You can download an app that adds a settings tab into your notification drawer (although some skins do it)? You can download an app that intercepts your home button and adds a new and improved task switcher? You can download a home launcher that has a widget tray? An improved *stock* camera app? You can download hardware acceleration? What about an app that supports dual cores? No? You don't say? I know I'm feeding the trolls, but this was ridiculous.
  • only problem is is that the nexus s isnt dual core.
  • How is that related at all to what I said? I didn't say the NS was dual core, I said ICS would support dual core properly for phones. Reading, a handy skill to learn.
  • What were you expecting?
  • I can't begin to imagine the amount of time it may take to get this on the U.S. Galaxy s2's without root :/
  • Don't jynx it lol. Samsung may try to actually do right by their customers this time.
  • HAHA! Good luck with that. People were saying that exact same thing when the OG Galaxy S came out because they did the same with the Behold II & Moment.
  • I second this... I have no faith in Samsung. Just mailed away my Epic 4G thats 13 months old and still has Froyo on it. I really though Sprint/Samsung would have it running GB before the GSII was released, but no... they are right on pace releasing a updates 1 behind the previous... which is sad because GB is almost 1 year old now.
  • Don't jynx it lol. Samsung may try to actually do right by their customers this time. Crap double post :(
  • I sent this in.
  • Yeah. I'm sure you were the only one who did. None of Android Central's other 499,999 members read Engadget after all, right? *rolls eyes*
  • I personally say fake. I originally though it could be real until I started seeing a few people throwing out that it looks very similar to the IceandFire rom, looking into it... yea, maybe a bit. Okay, more than just a bit. Skip to around 6:30 and you'll see that recent apps list as well as a few other similar items. There is also that ICS Launcher app shown in the IceandFire video.
  • Lockscreen different, app drawer different, theme different, notification tray is different, and doesn't have a settings button, camera app is different, menu key pop up is different, I'm actually not seeing many simularities but the fact that it has a button that may or may not work that says widgets, and it has the new task switcher from the "ics launcher" that doesn't work the same as the one in this video. The "ics switcher" in the "ics launcher" splits things into system apps and such, as well as being activated from a single tap on the home screen, not press and hold home. If this is fake, there was a lot of work put into it.
  • Yea, FireandIce is a Milestone rom. But you know... it's not hard to change all of that stuff you mention. Still a fake in my book.
  • send me the rom with all the changes he mentioned as well as the multitasking replacement (recent apps) and then your comment will be relevant
  • Shows how much you read what others try to show you. That 'recent apps' list is part of that 'ICS Launcher' app. I suppose bringing up the IceandFire rom wasn't all that needed, but it was what got me looking into the 'ICS Launcher' app that showed in its applist and got me looking for info on that app. If you look at the pictures in the link they even have the 'Google Apps' style button in the lower dock bar.
  • The features you were talking about aren't part of the IceandFire rom, it's from this mock ICS launcher from XDA dude.
  • I think it's legit. Looks legit. Hope it's legit.
  • Looks pretty real, but we won't know until the 11th now will we?
  • This is pretty ugly...
  • Yeah for real if this is fake then why not take credit for it cause it looks smooth. I've played with the ics launcher and it's pretty cool.
  • if this is fake, a lot of work went into it! not saying someone wouldn't put in some hours to fake the world out but if that's the case they may as well release it to us to use on our phones cause it seemed cool enough. :)
  • This is the one thing that iOS is clearly better at, I don't like having to wait for The telco/HTC to deign to toss me something, which so far was inferior to ROMs produced by others.
  • I got four guaranteed devices that will be Getting ice cream very soon. iOs who?
  • I don't care if there is 4 or 4000. There only one phone I'm very interested in since getting a new one is a couple of years away. I only just got gingerbread. Maybe I chose poorly but if there is an upgrade to IC, I want it when google releases it, not when it suits the suits. I'll take a non factory rom though, (which maybe what your talking about. Thumbs up CM7).
  • Fake all the way, guaranteed.
  • I hope that's not real. It's ugly.
  • +1
  • Panorama on AOSP camera? Sweet!
  • If this is a fake , they really went the extra mile to make look ligit If this is ligit , it looks like punch of apps glowed together
    its not a ground breaking or anything close , its still look the same, well kinda apart from a fancy new launcher & a new lock screen I hope that manufacturers get to use their UI on top of this , this looks like a symbian phone (from the pre-iPhone era)
  • A lot of work (assuming it's legit) is going into things that aren't on the surface that is much more "groundbreaking" than the theme. Hopefully.
  • Yes , the only "Groundbreaking" im interested in is the Dual-Core support
  • If it's not legit, and that's just a custom ROM, I want it. If it is legit...I want it twice as much.
  • this is ice cream sandwich...welcome to the new version of android.
  • Am I the only one that likes GB over this?
  • I don't know, but I do know you're not the only one who hasn't used it, so probably shouldn't be saying that yet.
  • This is fake since ICS will have a no physical buttons used,he would use the screen not the buttons.
  • When ICS is updated to current devices it doesn't remove the existing buttons loI. Whos to say they wont still have a purpose? The all screen phones you're talking about are the ones that will launch with ICS already on them
  • Psuedocode following: if hasPhysicalButtons == true {
    then android.os.usePhysicalButtons()
    ); (My point is, do you really think it's that hard for the OS to check if there are hardware buttons and decide whether or not to use them? It really is only a rudimentary function to code in.)
  • Also if you noticed, when he pushed the home (not hold it), it went to a list of running apps, something that would take you to the homescreen or show all the screens with most UIs
  • Maybe they added that feature (From MOTOBLUR) where it let's assign the Home Button to whatever you want
  • Give us a ROM dump... then we'll see... If it is, I'd love for the devs over at XDA to get their hands on it!
  • the owner posted a thread on XDA saying his phone was remotely locked and most likely wiped too.
  • I believe its a fake. I think the new ICS sandwich update will be revolutionary. I can waite when Google announces it.
  • Please don't be real... It's ugly
  • Exciting! Fake or not, Ice cream sandwich is coming and I my friends am excited. Fingers cross for the Prime on Verizon.
  • Awesome looking to me
  • ICS big feature is no physical buttons that wouldn't be smart to keep using them, phone that will get ICS & have physical buttons those buttons will be for decoration.
  • If it's real, I don't see anything valuable added to the experience on the phone. They just changed the way a few things look. Most of the differences will be replaced by apps I already use anyway(widget locker, go launcher, etc).
  • I believe part of it is real and the fake. Dont like the dockbar to much and the UI looks a little confusing but hey it is gingerbread and honeycomb mixed together so who knows lol, anyways hope some of it is true because i like how the google apps pop up and widgets in the app drawer. Stay tuned folks!
  • Well it's awesome but I don't totally believe it. That makes me even more excited and anticipating though. When will the official thing come out?
  • I'll believe it when I see the real McCoy.
  • I'm gonna go with real. it look solid with an air of tightness which only a few roms can achieve. Add to that the nexus s is a pepped up galaxy s yet it looks like it runs very smoothly. Can't wait to buy my GS3 or GS4 with this or a later version on it with all the kinks smoothed out. Realistically an ICS that has been messed with by the manufacturers then faffed about by my chosen carrier doesn't fill me with glee but I'll welcome it with open arms. 18 months count down from launch for my upgrade. I wonder who will win the upgrade race? As for expecting a large leap from the current android I think this is more than enough and it will only get better. How many visual leaps has IOS made since version 1 and can you see it leaping any time soon? Think on. In the meantime I think I'll watch this bad boy vid on repeat till the full release is in the hands of Android Central.
  • I only believe development phones that are drunkenly lost in bars.
  • I don't know if it's real or fake but why the hell do manufacturers have to mix and match the set of buttons on the bottom. Keep them all in ONE order!!
  • fake or not dont care..most important thing about ICS is proper dual core support,merging honeycomb and gingerbread together to form one os and hopefully buttonless design and the use of hardware accelaration which should provide smooth and lagless performance like the gs2...
  • why are people so opposed to change?
    I bet all Android faithful will learn to love it.
    The ones who cant get it are going to be jealous of the ones who have it, while the ones who have it complain about what they don't like about it. lol
    ...and if you dont like constant change, get an iphone!
    lol jk jk jk... kinda :P