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Verizon Galaxy Nexus Found Early at Best Buy, Verizon

Some lucky shoppers were able to buy the Verizon Galaxy Nexus ahead of the phone's official release.

A handful of lucky shoppers report buying the Verizon Galaxy Nexus at Best Buy and Verizon retail stores ahead of the yet-to-be-announced official release. But, before you run out the door to buy the Galaxy Nexus, don't expect to have similar good fortune before the phone is officially launched. Some of those who bought the Galaxy Nexus were asked to return the phone to the store they bought it from.

Verizon hasn't announced a release date or a price for Google's next flagship phone, but apparently some stores already have Galaxy Nexus units in stock. Google+ user Dave Fayram posted photos of his Galaxy Nexus purchased from Best Buy, and a member of Android Forums reported buying a Galaxy Nexus from a Verizon store. Droid Life reports that another customer was also successful at a Verizon store.

Other customers weren't so lucky. According to Android Tablet Blog, one buyer received several phone calls and text messages from the Verizon store, asking to return the phone or else the employee who sold it would be terminated. Google+ user Jesse Robinson said Best Buy was about to sell him a Galaxy Nexus, but the product had already been removed from the store's databases and couldn't be rung up, suggesting that early sales have been halted.

Some users reported a price of $299.99 on a two-year contract, a price that's been rumored but never confirmed by Verizon. One Best Buy shopper got the Galaxy Nexus for $250 as part of a promotion on 4G phones. Fayram said the base cost, without a contract, is $749.99.

Given that some stores already have the Galaxy Nexus stored away, an official release date can't be far off. Droid Life, citing unnamed sources, wrote that Verizon is now targeting a December 15 Galaxy Nexus release date.

The Galaxy Nexus is highly anticipated because it's the first phone with Android Ice Cream Sandwich, the latest version of Google's software. Because it's a Nexus phone, it has no user interface tweaks from phone manufacturers or wireless carriers, so it's likely to be first in line for future software updates. Its specs include a 4.65-inch 720p display, a 1.2 GHz dual-core processor, 1 GB of RAM, a 5-megapixel rear-facing camera and 1.3-megapixel front-facing camera. Most reviewers have praised the Galaxy Nexus as the best Android phone right now.

Outside the United States, an unlocked version of the phone has been available since November.

Follow Jared on Twitter, Facebook or Google+ for even more tech news and commentary.

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