Comment by Patrick Avenell (Follow me on Twitter)

Ruslan Kogan’s eponymous online store has begun taking orders for the new Samsung Galaxy Nexus, the first smartphone to run Android 4.0, known as Ice Cream Sandwich.

The media release arrived in my inbox this afternoon, with Kogan’s combative personality shining through in the punchy subject: “Kogan Beats Big Telcos to the Punch with Android 4.0 Galaxy Nexus”, it read.

From the information provided at the global launch in Hong Kong yesterday, it looks like a great smartphone that could rival the Galaxy S II and the iPhone 4S in popularity.

Kogan is selling the handset for an advertised “special offer” of $799. Based on previous Samsung and high-end smartphone pricing, the Galaxy Nexus is probably going to sell for around $900.

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Kogan is listing a dispatch date of 30 November 2011, though he anticipated receiving and shipping stock before this date. All in all, it looks like a very attractive proposition.

However, there is a caveat that customers should be aware of: this Galaxy Nexus is the HSDPA handset.

Samsung and Google are releasing two versions of the Galaxy Nexus: an HSDPA version to run on existing networks and a 4G version to run on LTE (long term evolution) networks. The decision as to which will be released in what area is being made on a region-by-region basis.

We know that Telstra will soon be launching the HTC 4G on its nascent high-speed network, so it’s very possible that Samsung will be bringing that model to Australia.

When asked directly which of the models it plans on bringing to Australia, Samsung provided this response:

“Currently we have no visibility on local availability for the Galaxy Nexus.”

There’s no doubt Kogan’s offer is competitive and attractive, and customers who choose this option will probably be amongst the first in the world to own the Galaxy Nexus. Those customers should be aware, however, that a faster version of the handset may be coming to Australia through the telco channels not long after.

Kogan's press agency was contacted for comment. We'll publish any response we receive.