There is a chance that the Galaxy Note 7 may come with Android 7 Nougat
It was a couple of times that we heard leaksters claim the Note 7 would launch with Android 7 right out of the box. However, seeing as Samsung's phablet will be released some time in August, probably no later than 2 weeks after the phone's unveiling, we didn't see this as a plausible rumor. Major Android updates in the past years were launched around October-November time, so the timeframe didn't make sense.
However, with the latest post in the Android Developers blog, Google confirmed that a “consumer release” of Android 7 Nougat will be coming by the end of Summer, not in Autumn.
Could this mean that the Note 7 with Android N rumors were true?
a couple of Nexus rumors thus far, there is absolutely nothing solid out there to suggest that the 2016 Google flagship(s) would be ready before Fall.
So, if Google remains true to its word, it may very well make Android 7 available before launching a new Nexus to back it up. Of course, there will definitely be a timely update for existing Nexus devices, but the point is — due to the open nature of Android, manufacturers will have access to the new build, and will have full right to launch a device with Nougat out of the box, before Google does.
The timeline could actually fit
Looking back at Android N Developer Preview releases so far, there has been a new build about once per month. If the trend continues, and there is no reason for us to believe that it wouldn't, the earliest we should expect Android 7 Nougat to be released is about a month after Developer Preview 5 was launched — and that was yesterday. So, no earlier than mid-August.
Now, let's look at Samsung. The Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge were announced on the 21st of February and the pre-order stage was launched immediately. The first smartphones were shipped a week later, around the 28th of February, and the models were physically up for sale on the 18th of March — a little more than 2 weeks after the announcement date. So, making an assumption that the Note 7 could start shipping around 2 weeks after its unveiling is not outlandish.
So, let's put 2 and 2 together. Assuming both speculations above turn out to be on point, it seems that both Android 7 Nougat and Samsung's Galaxy Note 7 could both be launching around mid-August.
It would require Samsung and Google to be working closely together
Funnily enough, we've been hearing that Samsung and Google are working together on TouchWiz builds since November of last year!
Provided a couple of leaps of faith need to be taken, and a couple of speculations need to align perfectly, there's still enough evidence out there to give credibility to the rumors that Samsung's Galaxy Note 7 could launch with Android 7 Nougat this year. In fact, seeing how obsessed Samsung has been with the number 7 (the 2016 Note was supposed to be the Note 6), it seems even more credible. Now, we just have to wait a few weeks and see how much of this speculation was on point!