27
Jun
nexthumb

Earlier this year, both Evan 'Evleaks' Blass and The Information's Amir Efrati claimed that the upcoming Android Silver program would replace the Nexus line of developer phones. Blass went so far as to say, "There is no Nexus 6. Farewell, Nexus." Both of those reports would seem to be contradicted by our own exclusive reveal of the HTC Volantis, a new Nexus tablet. Now we've got even more claims that the Nexus hardware line isn't going anywhere soon, this time right from the proverbial horse's mouth.

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Over at ReadWrite there's a telling interview with Dave Burke, Google's Head of Android Engineering and the Nexus program. Writer Dan Rowinski gets right to the point, asking Burke about Android Silver and the various reports that it would replace the Nexus line of phones and tablets. He replied:

People just get excited by concepts and forget why we do things. We are still invested in Nexus... People have been commenting about Nexus because there is something else and they think that means the end of Nexus. That is the totally wrong conclusion to make.

That seems like a pretty specific refutation. Burke declined to comment on Android Silver, neither confirming nor denying the upcoming premium partnership between Google and major mobile manufacturers. He did go on to say that Google is continuing to develop Nexus hardware with new versions of Android, which would mean a new Nexus device for the L release later this year (possibly the HTC tablet, but more probably a new Nexus phone as well).

Android Police broke the initial story on Android Silver, demonstrated internal screenshots and designs for retail kiosks showing off the high-end phones running stock Android software. Nothing in our initial scoop indicated that the Nexus line was disappearing, though it's a pretty natural leap - a company like Google, which doesn't directly manufacture phone hardware, would be a strange place to find two hardware branding initiatives. Silver is definitely real, and definitely exists at Google in some form. Exactly what it will be when, and if, it debuts at retailers is still up in the air.

Also of note is Android One, the new low-cost initiative that Google revealed earlier this week at I/O. Android One is designed to push low-cost smartphones based on reference designs running stock Android software, selling at $100 unsubsidized or less, to emerging markets. Android One will begin a rollout with various hardware and carrier partners in India later this year. Assuming that both One and Silver come to fruition, and that the Nexus program is indeed sticking around, that would mean that Google would have three hardware initiatives covering the low end, (roughly) mid-range, and high-end hardware spectrums starting next year.

Update: Emir Efrati points out that he never said the whole Nexus line is going away, just that the phones would: "The expensive effort involves dumping the four-year-old Google Nexus phone brand in favor of a new program called Silver." That's certainly a possibility, given that the only Nexus device on the horizon is a tablet, and LG (which made the last two Nexus phones) says it has none in the pipeline. IN the quote above, Dave Burke does not specify between phones and tablets.

Source: ReadWrite

Michael Crider
Michael is a native Texan and a former graphic designer. He's been covering technology in general and Android in particular since 2011. His interests include folk music, football, science fiction, and salsa verde, in no particular order.

  • evolutionx1

    WOOOOOOOOOOOOOoooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!!!!

    • Gaurav Arora

      Nexus was always there reference device :) thank god it's here to stay!

      So, WOOOOOOOOOOOOooooooooooooooooooooo!!!!

      • haha

        Update: NOOOOOOOOOOOOooooooooooooooooooooo!!!!

    • Michael Fontenot

      This was my reaction exactly.

    • ad

      Uhm, no.

  • Pascal

    If they want to release developer previews in the future, they need Nexus.

    • Thomas Phillips

      Not necessarily if they have Android One and Android Silver phones, assuming Nexus and Google Play Edition both died. Certainly hope Nexus phones and tablets continue to live on though.

      • jamaall

        Not completely true. Android Silver phones can have modifications, but they're nearly stock. Think Moto X and the Droids, they'd be Android Silver. Android One might be completely stock, but I don't think they're going to get a good turn out of beta testers out of that.

      • http://si97.com/ Saif

        I hope Google Play edition = Android Silver

    • tomokatsu

      I was downloading the preview for my N7 last night and came to the same conclusion. If they are committed to releasing preview versions, they would need a couple specific developer devices to target - AKA the Nexus line.

      • mateor

        Me too. Why start a program solely for reference devices just to kill the idea? Death of Nexus does not jibe with developer preview.

  • 16Bitz0r

    Release the preview to N4 owners!

    • _artem_

      +100500 bro I'm with ya

    • Carlos

      Noo!
      N4 is dead now! just like what they did to the Nexus!

      • Herp

        Derp?

    • Blendi Krasniqi

      Preview binaries have been released for Nexus 4, Nexus 7 (wifi and lte) and Nexus 10. The only device that wont get Android L it seems is the 2012 Nexus 7.

      Also dont forget that photo of L running on Nexus 4 that was posted a few days ago in Android Police.

      • BarKa

        where they have released for n4? link?

        • _artem_

          https://developers.google.com/android/nexus/blobs-preview

          those are just binaries blond not stock rom

          • EowynCarter

            There really are for "L" ? If so, that encouraging indead.

          • h4rr4r

            If you have the binaries building AOSP becomes trivial. Assuming you have all the binaries.
            What we really need is for these OEMs to get those drivers into mainline.

          • _artem_

            assuming we have the L aosp tree... which we don't

          • EowynCarter

            But we will.

          • Ian Santopietro

            Except for that L isn't in AOSP yet.

          • h4rr4r

            So?
            Do you think it will not end up there when it ships?

          • Dhaiwat

            No 'L' source will definitely end up in AOSP when they are finished it releases, I'm hoping they are sharing it with all the major OEMs as they progress so the OEMs can work out the bugs along with google working them out for Nexus devices and OEMs working out the bugs for their next, previous flagships,and any other devices they want to update. It would be epic if Android L rolled out to all the popular devices regardless of it being a GPE or Nexus, the Android version pie chart would start demolishing, them Tim Cook (I respect him to a certain extent for letting iOS be a little bit more open-keyboards) can go shove his dumb jokes up his...

          • h4rr4r

            Not going to happen.
            Between VZW's antics and vendors wanting you on the upgrade treadmill it simply will not ship to most devices.

            I wish AOSP was where the dev happened though and commercial android pulled from that.

          • Dhaiwat

            Good point forgot about Verizon's annoying ass, but at least have the devices ready for testing to release it within '90' days like HTC promised instead maybe, but the promise being extended to all the OEMs. I feel like if all the OEMs were to have a joined agreement to say look 'fuckers' - John Legere style to all the carriers (except T-Mobile as they could brand it with Un-something) we won't supply you phones at all if you don't start letting us take full control over the software updates. I know this could go many different ways but would show some balls from the OEMs.

          • h4rr4r

            Not gonna happen.
            In the USA the carriers buy the phones and sell them to the end users. This means they have a huge sway, as they are the real customers. Any such move would lead to the carriers getting phones built by smaller players in the market.
            Even if all the OEMS in operation today did such a thing, carriers would simply invest in a new OEM and order phones from foxconn.

          • navjot

            The Nexus 4 will surely get a release version of L, but I think the original commentators are saying that they would like to see a preview release as well.

      • EowynCarter

        Mmm, what photo of L on a nexus 4 ?

      • 16Bitz0r

        Nice try, Blendi.

      • http://www.twitter.com/italofigueired Italo F.

        But 32Gb 2012 Nexus 7 was released at the same time as Nexus 4. It have to be updated, so.

        • EowynCarter

          It won't be, Not ART compatible :(

          • http://www.twitter.com/italofigueired Italo F.

            Nexus 10 havent support at 4.4.4 too!

          • Fatal1ty_93_RUS

            Exynos (maybe only the older models) processors don't support ART at all it seems

        • Stacey Liu

          No it wasn't. It was released 4-5 months earlier, and it has much weaker hardware than the Nexus 4.

          • http://www.twitter.com/italofigueired Italo F.

            You are talking without know. Only 8 and 16 GB versions were released in July. The 32GB upgrade was released at the same event as Nexus 4/10.

      • Fatal1ty_93_RUS

        Are you sure that those preview binaries are for L and not 4.4.4 or older?

  • TheSparks

    Oh Yes!
    I'm guessing Nexus devises are now going to be treated more like developer devices.

  • Generko

    On an irrelevant note, when will you guys update your website's layout? It looks out of date!

    • http://thegumshoe.com/ Michael Crider

      Direct all complaints to Artem Russakovskii. We do. Constantly.

      • Amarus Kh

        ls -a complaints | @archon810:disqus
        Like that?

        • Sir_Brizz

          No don't pipe them to him, you are looking for

          ls -la >> /dev/artem

          • pfmiller

            # ls -l /dev/artem
            lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root 15 Mar 6 12:39 /dev/artem -> /dev/null

            Hmm, so that's where my complaints have been going...

    • Solomon Taiwo

      They should update it with material design ahah

      • WORPspeed

        that would be amazing! One website that scales based on whether you view it from the desktop, laptop, tablet, tv or phone! (maybe even watch)

        • Friday

          Welcome to the 2014 internet. This happens on most populat sites at the moment.

          • WORPspeed

            not material design style, most websites just have a desktop and mobile version...nothing as cool and integrated as material design (from waht I understand it would be at least)

        • BetterWithRoot

          If a website is built 'properly' there shouldn't be a mobile version and a desktop version. It should be responsive to the screen that it is being displayed on.

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Responsive_web_design

      • Fatal1ty_93_RUS

        Mind blown

    • WORPspeed

      Android Silver Police!
      Android One Police!

    • BigTimmay

      Art said they're working on it every day, except for these I/O days.

      • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

        No, even I/O days.

        • WORPspeed

          So ETA on redesign? Fall release together with L? Tomorrow just because you can?

  • Greek_Ice

    Pardon my leet, but f*** yes!!!

  • c0n0r

    This is brilliant news

  • WORPspeed

    So how long till they reveal the Silver Nexus One?
    The cheap, high-end nexus phone! :P

    Thank God for this news btw,....I was almost considering going non-nexus for my next phone...I was filled with anxiety :P

  • Captain Canada

    It is suspicious though that we only know about Volantis, a tablet. He says they need a reference device for developers but that doesn't necessarily mean a Nexus 5 successor is in the cards. I can see the only Nexus device released this year being a tablet, if it's a phone then it would certainly muck up what Google is attempting to do with Silver, no? From my understanding Silver is about pushing flagship Nexus-like devices from OEMs with minimal customization/bloat to reward the very companies who have pushed Android to where it is today. What do you all think?

  • DevliegereM

    Thanks for the tip ____ Insert name here :).
    Always believed that Nexus would be a stayer :)

  • Mark01

    Van • 3 days ago

    I can't wait to see these 'all-but-confirmed' rumors of the Nexus line being cancelled smashed and put to rest when they really do launch a 2014 N5 in the fall with the new L release.2

    David Ruddock AP Staff Van • 3 days ago

    Except that almost definitely isn't happening. I hate to be the "I can't show you, but I've seen things" guy, but I have, and I'm pretty confident Nexus phones = RIP.

    LOL, He definitely saw things.

    • PhilNelwyn
    • andy_o

      I think he just likes pie that much.

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

      Well, this was specifically regarding the LG Nexus 6, which did get canned as far as we know. The Volantis was always supposed to be the Nexus for this year, but now it's entirely unclear if there is going to be a Nexus phone this year anymore.

      • http://about.me/jovanphilip Van

        LOL no. This wasn't specific to a Nexus 6 at all. Notice "Nexus line" in my original comment above quickly followed by David's "Nexus phones = RIP". It's pretty obvious there wasn't going to b e a Nexus 6 phone because a 6 inch phone from Google would not make sense. I love how you guys cover each other's tracks though.

        • Wall Breaker

          the nexus phones are named by what version not by screen size. Only the tablets are named by screen size.

          according to your logic the Nexus 1 should of had a 1 inch screen.

          • Dhaiwat

            Haha I get it about the screen size not always correlating to the iteration of the phone, however there is no such thing as a 'Galaxy' screen size or an 'S' screen size.

            Yes, once the Nexus 7 & 10 were launched it made sense, but the older commercials would show "the playground" is open in 3 sizes 4,7, and 10 inches.

            Which would mark the change with a new way of defining the phone naming scheme to the relative screen size as it was 4 inches (Nexus 4; naming it Nexus 4.7 would have been absurd), then 7 inches (Nexus 7:naming it Nexus 7.02 again would be abysmal) , and lastly 10 inches (Nexus 10; naming it Nexus 10.055 would be yet again really dumb).
            With all that said the Nexus 5 as an almost 5 inch screen which is 4.95in, which is close enough to call it Nexus 4.95.

            Also in the Play Store if you scroll down to the nexus devices it says "The best of Google, in three sizes" which could help further my point.

            However I could be completely wrong, but again they wanted to make another ~7in tablet so they called the Nexus 7 the "2013" edition basically, otherwise they might as well have called it the Nexus 7 2 or Nexus 8 (which would confuse the message conveyed via the naming scheme to be the relative screen size. So hopefully this can end the dumb argument between the naming scheme, but this is just my interpretation, I could be completely wrong.

            However all the signs point to the theory being right.

            Let me know other theories y'all might have behind the naming scheme.

          • Wall Breaker

            I agree I have wondered about the Naming system for some time. Could be the Nexus 5 2014 idk.

            Maybe the Nexus 6 will be the last number

          • Nexus5Forum.com

            Dhaiwat gets it. The naming convention was changed when the tablets came out. Starting when the Nexus 7 and 10 came out along with the Nexus 4 Google changed their naming convention to reflect screen size and since the screen of the Nexus 5 was so close to 5 inches they went with Nexus 5. You won't see a Nexus 6 and if anything they would have made a Nexus 5 second generation like they did with the Nexus 7.

          • Joshua Hill

            Do you have a source within Google that can verify this??? Didn't think so. People's opinions change, we have no idea about the naming conventions for nexus devices yet people insist on talking like they are some authority!

          • rmkilc

            You are my hero.

          • rmkilc

            No, there was no Nexus 1. There was a Nexus One, but that was before the modern naming convention that started with the Nexus 7 and Nexus 4. It makes no sense to call tablets by screen size, and phones by version. Nexus 7 phone? C'mon now.

          • grumpyfuzz

            Google can just give this a unique name, like galaxy nexus or nexus s.

          • godsfilth

            and the nexus S should have had an S sized screen and the galaxy nexus a galaxy sized screen

          • Nexus5Forum.com

            Again, you don't get it. They changed the naming convention of all Nexus devices after they came out with the tablets. It was in their marketing kits. You can see them have the three different screen sizes and refer to them as Google Android in three sizes...4, 7 and 10 inches. They named the Nexus 5 with a 5 because at 4.95 inches it was just about 5 inches so it made sense to do that. But I would not expect them to call another Nexus phone 6...it would more than likely be the Nexus 5 2014 just like they did with the Nexus 7.

          • Joshua Hill

            Source for alleged marketing kit?

        • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

          David may have jumped to a premature conclusion after seeing the evidence of the Nexus phone getting killed, I don't know, but my point is that a) things change, and with Google, they change a lot, all the time, b) we saw some pretty damning evidence of the LG N6 getting killed, c) we still don't know if Google will release Nexus phones - it's possible that just like with Volantis later this year, they'll stick to tablets. Or not, it's too early to say, and I hope they don't.

      • Wall Breaker

        a google employee confirmed in a separate article that the Nexus 6 is in the works.

        • hhh

          link?

        • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

          I don't know what to believe anymore. We've seen evidence of the N6 getting killed, then resurfacing, although it was unclear if it was just older data, then LG said they weren't making it... there's so much confusion around the N6 that I'm not sure who and what to believe anymore.

    • http://about.me/jovanphilip Van

      You wouldn't believe how much I laughed after reading that.

    • rmkilc

      If the next Nexus phone has a 5" screen, it better be called the Nexus 5 (2014) and not the Nexus 6. Way too many people refer to the next phone as the Nexus 6, and that naming convention doesn't make any sense unless it had a 6" screen.

      • CLAMiTAS

        It will make sense since it will be the 6th Nexus phone. Nexus 5 was the 5th Nexus phone.

        • Dhaiwat

          Please scroll a bit further down and read my other comment. It might explain the naming scheme.

          • Joshua Hill

            Unless it has some official comment/explanation from Google then it won't explain anything, it will just be your opinion!

          • Dhaiwat

            I think I've mentioned that its my opinion, its my speculation. Never said its official. If I'm wrong then I'm wrong. Just sharing my thought. Didn't think this article was still active btw lol.

          • Joshua Hill

            It came up when I tried to find this alleged marketing material that purports to have some official announcement from Google about their naming scheme. The marketing material you and others claim clarifies googles naming position. Of course I've yet to find the alleged document and don't believe it actually exists!

          • Dhaiwat

            What? I've never claimed that, if I have I was referring to the person that said there apparently was some official material. Never said that there was any material for sure lol. I was using that person as reference that if its true it could maybe give insight to how much of my opinion/theory of the naming scheme was correct or not.

        • rmkilc

          Totally. And the 7th one will be called the Nexus 7. And for tablets, the 2012 Nexus 7 was the 7th Nexus device, the 2013 Nexus 7 was the 7th Nexus device, and the Nexus 10 was the 10th Nexus device. I see your logic! Brilliant thinking.

          • CLAMiTAS

            I know it doesn't make sense on the tablets. But those aren't phones. But both N4 and N5 has the same name as its order in line. As has the Nexus One. I'm not saying this is how it is. Just that it it would make sense to call the next Nexus phone N6.

          • rmkilc

            That's coincidence. The Nexus 4 and Nexus 5 are named by their screen size. The Nexus One was named before the screen size naming convention. Plus, it's not Nexus 1.

          • Joshua Hill

            So a 4.7" screen is closer to a 4 or 5" screen? That reasoning makes no sense to me.

          • rmkilc

            With floor rounding it makes sense. As for the Nexus 5, it's close enough to 5".

          • Joshua Hill

            Sorry a 4.95" screen using floor rounding would be a model 4 not 5. You just contradicted your supposed naming scheme. It either follows a rule or it doesn't. You can't have it both ways!

          • rmkilc

            I already said it's close enough to 5". If I need to spell it out for you:

            Name = FLOOR(ROUND(Screen Size, 1))

          • Joshua Hill

            Yes, you may need to spell it out for me (edit: and by that I mean something more detailed than what looks like an unspecified programming language). I was under the impression that floor rounding meant that 4.95 rounds to 4, even 4.99 would round to 4? Correct me if I'm wrong with reasoning because that is what I though floor rounding was?

            If you want to bend the rules then there is no rule as you originally claimed. As I previously said you can't have it both ways!

          • rmkilc

            Read my equation. You round to the nearest 10th before floor rounding. This rounds 4.95 to 5.0. Then floor round 5. You get 5.

          • Joshua Hill

            So the originally rumoured 5.9” shamu nexus phone would still be a Nexus 5 and the more recently rumoured 5.2" shamu sized nexus would also be a nexus 5. I thought your naming scheme was supposed to make this phone a Nexus 6?

            By creating a quite convoluted naming scheme you've got it to work for the Nexus 4 and 5 but it doesn't appear like it will work for either of the rumoured Nexus 6's!

          • rmkilc

            Why are you so against the naming scheme referring to screen sizes?

          • Joshua Hill

            Because to me it doesn't make sense. I think the device generation makes more sense but I don't think it's some naming rule or convention. Google haven't ever stated what their nameing scheme is or if they even follow a rule or just make it up as they go yet you get so worked up about your theory that requires a convoluted rule to work and only applies for two generations. You sound like an apple fanboi as though this was some gospel straight from the church of Google.

          • Joshua Hill

            Why are you so far the naming screen referring to screen size when it only works for the last two generations and won't work for the next generation based on any of the so far rumoured specs?

  • h4rr4r

    There has to be a Nexus 6.
    Otherwise the entire Blade Runner naming scheme is just wasted.

  • http://www.gundamaustralia.com/ cameron charles

    Honestly I think it was a pretty silly leap to make in the first place, the Nexus line made Android what it is not even Google is silly enough to throw that away

    • Steve Freeman

      The Nexus line made Android what it is among ENTHUSIASTS. But don't forget, we're a fairly small minority.

      To be clear, I'm not taking a stance either way on the Nexus conversation, I was just making a point regarding what did and didn't make Android what it is.

  • Alberto

    Well, we know from this very site that there's a Nexus tablet on the way later this year... but no phones so far... it wouldn't be a lie if they stick with the Nexus brand for tablets and replace Nexus PHONES with Silver

  • Vivek

    Android One will begin a rollout with various hardware and carrier partners in India later this year - there is usually no carrier partner stuff in India

  • Nathan

    Long live Nexus!

    Now hopefully the next Nexus phone will be from Motorola, HTC or Sony!

    • Greg Hockenjos

      I really hope it's not Moto. Those screens they use are terrible. I would be fine with a g3 spinoff.

      • Sir_Brizz

        There is at least one shady site reporting rumors of a G3 based Nexus 6. So who knows.

  • dhruva

    why do you assume the supposed 'android silver' is not android one? 'quantum paper' became 'material designs'. also 'silver' sounds less premium next to 'one'.

  • Google_Is_The_Higgs_Boson

    I'm hoping a Nexus AndroidTV, watch, tablet, and Phone... I'm rocking the N5... So depending on what the N6 would offer I might stick with the N5... But I'm looking to get a AndroidTV, to replace my GoogleTV... And I want a watch, but I won't spend a lot on one... $100 to $150 at most...

    • Sir_Brizz

      I was hoping for a $99 NexusTV on Wednesday. Pretty disappointed on that one.

    • pfmiller

      I'm hoping for a Nexus Car somewhere in the $3000-5000 range

      • Google_Is_The_Higgs_Boson

        Hahaaa... That would be nice...lol

  • Sharath

    shutupandtakemymoney.jpg

  • Chris

    So where in the hell did evleaks get the idea that the Nexus line was going to be abolished? I understand every leak should be taken with a grain of salt but he seemed to be so certain.

    • Fatal1ty_93_RUS

      Out of his ass probably

    • andy_o

      Even before that (before Silver was discovered,even) a whole lot of people and sites were saying it, based on one tweet of one guy (not evleaks). Sites like AP paid more attention to evleaks cause he's got more established credibility.

  • subramanianv

    This is encouraging. I did not believe Nexus will be dead, but the so many articles made me doubt it.

    I think Android Silver will be a premium phone, the way Google wants it and may even be carry the Google brand, like the Chrome pixel.

    They might even replace the GPE devices with Silver. After all, GPE devices are not consistent with Google's ideology. Removable Storage on S4, hardware buttons on S4 and HTC are actually hindrance for Google drive and Google Now respectively. So, Silver could be THE phone with uncompromising quality and cutting edge specification with a fatter price.

  • Tom Erlandsen

    I bought a Nexus 5 on Wednesday after Google didn't announce any phones or Android Silver plans in their keynote. If only I'd known, I would've been patient and held out for the next Nexus phone. Ah well, loving the L preview if nothing else :D

  • tokuiten

    I think the more natural conclusion is that Silver is replacing the Google Play Editions.

    If Nexus and GPE can coexist, so can Nexus and Silver. But, yeah, I don't see any room for both GPE and Silver together.

  • O’s Fan91

    NEXUS! F*** YEAH!
    -Sung to the tune of America F yeah.

  • Big_Grams

    Thank You Based God!!!!!!!

  • MaybeYesMaybeNo

    Maybe google's testing who's the guy behind their leaks, so they spread different false "leaks" to different guys, and this "lucky" guy got "nexus program got canceled" news and then he passed it to evleaks and then he got busted from his job?

  • Badouken

    Maybe Google is waiting to get Verizon on board with Silver?! and Thats how Verizon ruined Android Silver for everyone... haha But in a serious note... I have an upgrade in August... Ill gladly wait till october/November if that means I can get a Nexus 6... but I am indeed on Verizon so by some miracle if it comes to them... then YES!!!! If not... I might have to switch carriers...

  • Wall Breaker

    Nexus 8, Nexus 6, Nexus Smartwatch Please!

  • Brett Besa

    I've been saying this since the original article: there is NO reason that Silver necessitates the death of Nexus. Nexus can be integrated into Silver if Google so chose. People just like to have a reason to freak out.

  • DJRiful

    Nexus forever! Please!

  • saltyzip

    Rock on Tommy!

  • Crispin Swickard

    Of course there will be no Nexus 6. It will be the Nexus 5 '14. ;)

  • letsplaay

    Let me just voice a super minority opinion here.

    Google, you should definitely consider Nexus Note or that sort that comes with an active stylus. The only single reason I won't ever get a Nexus is because after using Note 3, active stylus has become an essential.

  • impure

    I hope there's no Nexus 6. There are too many 6 inch phones already.

  • http://google.com/+ThomasBeling Thomas Beling

    Best news for months!