Google and Samsung finally presented the new Android version (Android 4.0, aka “Ice Cream Sandwich”) and a new smart phone from Samsung at a conference in Hong Kong. The operating system and the phone has been developed in close cooperation between the two companies, where the engineers literally worked under the same roof, said Andy Rubin, SVP of Mobile at Google, during the launch.

The phone is called Samsung Galaxy Nexus and will be available in Europe, USA and Asia in November. It has a 1.2 GHz dual-core processor and a large 4.65-inch Samsung HD Super AMOLED display with a resolution of 1280×720 pixels.

The phone is quite thin, slightly curved, with a curved screen, which will make it more comfortable to operate with your fingers and the screen almost entirely reach the phone’s outer edge.

“Samsung and Google have closely collaborated to push the mobile experience forward. We are pleased to deliver the best Android smartphone experience for customers with Galaxy Nexus. We will continue to move forward with Android to provide the compelling consumer experience in the mobile world,” said JK Shin, president and head of Samsung’s Mobile Communications Business.

“Ice Cream Sandwich demonstrates the Android platform‘s continued innovation with one release that works on phones and tablets and everything in between. Features like Android Beam and Face Unlock show the innovative work our team is doing, and Galaxy Nexus showcases the power behind Ice Cream Sandwich,” said Andy Rubin, senior vice president of Mobile for Google.

“With Ice Cream Sandwich, our mission was to build a mobile OS that works on both phones and tablets, and to make the power of Android enticing and intuitive. We created a new font that’s optimized for HD displays and eliminated all hardware buttons in favor of adaptable software buttons. We also dramatically improved the keyboard, made notifications more interactive and created resizable widgets.”

Ice Cream Sandwich was originally designed to work equally on both phones and tablets, but during the press conference tablets was not mentioned.

The new edition of the operating system needs no physical buttons to function, and some of the new features are listed below:

Android Beam for NFC-based sharing – which supports so-called Near Field Communications. It allows you to bump your phone against another phone to share web pages, maps, YouTube videos and games.

Better camera control – take pictures immediately when you press the button, without delay. Take panoramic shots by turning the phone slowly, the program stitches the pictures together into a panorama.

Screenshot function – hold on/off button and audio button simultaneously to take a picture of the screen you are on.

Face Unlock – Allows you to unlock your phone by just looking into the camera, you do not have to enter the pincode.

Other new features include the possibility for deep customization, better system for notifications, screen with controls for camera and music, and better handling of how the application starts and works.

Most of Google’s applications are also updated for the new operating system, and you can choose whether your browser will display full web pages rather than a mobile customized website.

For more information, check out the official Android 4.0 Platform Highlights.