Google is planning to build its own Android smartphone in an effort to take the fight to Apple's iPhone at the top end of the smartphone market.
Sources reportedly told The Telegraph of the plans, claiming that the firm is in talks with mobile operators about releasing a Google-branded smartphone.
This marks a major shift from Google's standard strategy of partnering with handset makers such as LG, Huawei and HTC to develop Nexus devices that showcase the Android platform.
The Google-built handset will apparently make its debut later this year, so we'll assume it'll arrive running the firm's still to be named Android N software.
However, the Telegraph report suggested that the device will be distinct from the firm's current Nexus line-up, and will be sold in addition to partner-built Android N smartphones.
This makes sense, as Google CEO Sundar Pichai said earlier this year that the company will continue to support the Google-backed Nexus smartphones, and Huawei has already confirmed that it's lined up to build a successor to last year's Nexus 6P.
Huawei may also have caught wind of Google's plans to build its own smartphone, as rumours surfaced last week claiming that the Chinese firm is plotting to build its own mobile operating system owing to concerns that Google may tighten its grip on Android.
HTC is also thought to be building a Nexus smartphone for later this year. Codenamed 'Sailfish', the Android N handset will reportedly have a 5in Full HD display, 64-bit quad-core chip, 4GB of RAM, 12MP and 8MP cameras and a USB Type-C port, suggesting it will arrive as a follow-up to last year's LG-built Nexus 5X smartphone.
Google has yet to comment on these latest rumours.
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