There’s still very little official information to be had about Android’s next major version, though even Google seems to have settled on the name Jelly Bean. Today DigiTimes quotes its anonymous sources (which are almost always hardware or component suppliers) saying that Android 5.0 is due in the third quarter of 2012. For those without a pocket planner handy, that’s between July and September. They also note that a new OS revision may be detrimental to the platform if Ice Cream Sandwich adoption continues at its glacial pace.
To be frank, DigiTimes excels at these sort of vague predictions. Based on Google’s previous development cycles, the next version of Android is almost guaranteed to come some time in the latter half of this year, whether it’s Jelly Bean or Android 5.0 (they may do another Gingerbread-style incremental update instead). Q3 is a little earlier than we expected, since both Gingerbread and Ice Cream Sandwich came in the fourth quarter, with Honeycomb serving as a sort of beta for the Android tablet platform. Given these extrapolations, their sources have a 50% chance of being right or wrong.
There’s an astounding lack of information on the next version of Android, with the sole rumor so far being centered around a docked desktop-style interface. We’ll almost certainly get some more information from Google at the Google IO conference in late June, including a confirmation of the name and version number. Until then, it’s all a chasing after the wind. You can expect another big reveal media event for the new OS, and whatever device ends up being its hardware counterpart, in late 2012.