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Fantastic in plastic? Fishy HTC Nexus 9 photo casts doubts on metal construction

Google is incapable of keeping a lid on Nexus 9 specifications and features, but the design and build materials remain subject to speculation.

Nexus 9 plastic

As soon as @evleaks, perhaps the most respected and trusted name in the rumormongering business, closed shop, an eerie sense of uneasiness dawned on hardcore tech enthusiasts. Particularly mobile tech aficionados.

Who will guide us now behind the curtains of product research and development? Surely we can’t just sit around and wait for OEMs to come forward with their announcements knowing nothing in advance. Of course not, but who can we trust anymore?

TK Tech News? @upleaks? @evleaks vouches for them, but so far, they haven’t convinced us they’re fully reliable. Meanwhile, publications like Android Police hold a fairly clean track record, mostly because they double, triple and quadruple check their intel, rarely posting unsubstantiated gossip.

Only today, AP and @upleaks clash on a key Nexus 9-related matter, the former hinting at the tablet being made of plastic after the latter published an exhaustive report that suggested there was no way Google and HTC would go for something other than robust and premium aluminum.

Nexus 9 early render

Any chance both sources are right, and the N9 ends up blending polycarbonate and metal? Hardly, based on the photo tweeted by the Twitter leaker. The low-res pic stars the T1-codenamed 9 incher as seen from behind, with an overall boxy vibe, HTC and Nexus branding, and an N5-like matte plastic cover.

Personally, I feel an image of this kind is way too easy to manipulate for us to just take it for granted. Also, how would HTC explain putting such outstanding components inside the Nexus 9 and then cutting a corner in perhaps the most important department for Android fans?

It doesn’t make sense. A Tegra K1-powered beast, with vanilla Android L, 2 GB RAM, stereo front-facing speakers, 8 MP OIS rear camera, 2,048 x 1,440 pix res display and… cheap plastic construction? Nuh-uh, we’re not buying it. So either the photo is a fake, or worse, some of the rumored high-end features won’t pan out.

On a semi-unrelated note, we’d like to mention the FCC just made some certification paperwork public which suggests we could be mere weeks away from HTC Nexus 9’s commercial launch. The tablet was approved more than a month ago in 16 and 32 GB storage variations, so all Google needs to do now is put the finishing touches on its software, unveil it and slap a price tag on it.

Sources: Twitter, Android Police

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