Goodness, has it really been nearly a year since Verizon's VX8500 Chocolate from LG hit streets? Indeed it has, and by cellphone standards, we reckon that's an eternity; Verizon has managed to keep the line fresh by injecting color after color after color, but sooner or later, you've gotta drop new hardware. That appears to be what we're looking at here, at least in false-colored, rendered form: meet the LG VX8550, a phone whose model name we can only take to mean that a successor to the aforementioned VX8500 is in the works. Details are few and far between -- LG really has this FCC filing locked down -- but we can make out that it'll be a CDMA / EV-DO piece with Bluetooth, and the rendering seems to suggest that it could be a slider, or perhaps a pudgy candybar. We're clueless on a release date for this one, but if Verizon wanted to celebrate the VX8500's anniversary with the VX8550's launch, they'd be looking at late July or early August.

[Thanks, Brian]

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LG prepping Chocolate successor for Verizon?