A new rumor is spreading today that we could be seeing devices with Google's next-gen Android platform, called Ice Cream Sandwich, launching as early as October. Since Apple's iPhone 5 is expected to arrive sometime in September or October, it's believed that Google will rush the new platform to counter the major Apple development.
Google may also be concerned about getting Ice Cream Sandwich devices out before November because that month marks the two-year anniversary of the original Motorola Droid. The Droid is considered by many to be the first handset to really put Android on the map and make it a serious contender in the mobile market. With the two-year contracts expiring, these customers, now free to switch phones and even carriers completely penatly-free, may jump for the iPhone 5.
Android 4 Ice Cream Sandwich was first announced back at Google I/O and will be a unifying platform for both tablets and smartphones. Currently, tablets run on Android Honeycomb while smartphones run on Android Gingerbread. With Ice Cream Sandwich, smartphones will get many of the Honeycomb features such as the multitasking UI, the launcher, and richer widgets.