Google’s new OS is supposed to be the great unifier: a stable system that brings Android owners - both tablet and phone - together under one cheery green robot’s mindful gaze.

Things, as ever, have not proved to be that simple. The launch of the flagship Galaxy Nexus, with Android 4.0 on board, has been beset by hardware problems that make the iPhone 4’s Antennagate pale in comparison.

Volume spikes and other bizarre problems - which our own Damian McFerran warned “makes the phone almost unusable” - have taken some of the shine off what should have been the heralding of a visually striking and user-friendly new operating system.

Taking many of its cues from the tablet-exclusive Honeycomb OS, its streamlined, ultra modern design also boasts some intriguing new features like Android Beam (for NFC-enabled contactless payments and sharing) and Face Unlock (which we’re desperate to test with an array of wigs and fake beards).

The big question, therefore, is, “Will my old phone get a lick of Ice Cream Sandwich?” And that’s where we step in.

After scouring the most reliable tech sites around, listening in on forum chatter, and sending out smoke signals, we’ve come up with the following compilation of phones set to get the 4.0 update. Most are confirmed, but when they’re only rumoured we’ll make that clear too.

If you’ve heard of other phones getting the ICS update, pop your knowledge in the comments below and add more grist to the rumour mill.

Asus

Confirmed for ICS:

  • Eee Pad Transformer
  • PadFone (release date TBC)
  • Transformer Prime (launches December 16 in the U.S. but UK release TBC)

In an official statement, Asus - the venerable creator of the award-winning Transformer and its forthcoming successor the Transformer Prime - was “delighted to confirm support for Ice Cream Sandwich on the Asus Eee Pad Family”.

That’s about as definitive as it gets, though the company warned that it’s “unable to set a date for its release”.

The original Transformer scored an impressive Silver Award from us when it launched in July, when we praised its sturdy and stylish 10.1-inch design.

The addition of a bolt-on keyboard, which doubles as a charger, was a neat touch and great for web browsing, but the lack of a decent office suite meant it never quite became the Netbook alternative it promised to be.

Hopefully, the ICS update’s built-in dictionary will help with this when it arrives. The enhanced Transformer Prime, which is slimmer (at 8.3mm, it’s got the 9mm iPad 2 beat by a fraction), lighter, and loaded with the first quad-core tablet processor (Nvidia’s Tegra 3), launches stateside in December should also bring a software update for the original too.

Acer

Rumoured for ICS:

  • 2011 Iconia Tab range
  • 2012 Iconia Tab range (release TBC)

Always hot on the heels of Asus - both companies are based in Taiwan, which creates healthy competition - Acer is apparently gearing up a line of Tegra 3-powered tablets for launch in January.

The first Iconia Tab launched at the same time as the Asus Transformer, with almost identical specs. It failed to make as much of a commercial splash, however, as there was no optional keyboard attachment.

Still, it’s a solid 10.1-inch slate that provided a cheaper alternative to Motorola’s stylish and over-priced Xoom (the first tablet with Honeycomb on board).

We’ve had no official word about Ice Cream Sandwich updates, but Acer is not a company that likes to be left behind in the technology race, so one should be on the way (perhaps as you read this very sentence).

HTC

Confirmed for ICS:

  • Vivid
  • Sensation
  • Sensation XE
  • Sensation XL
  • EVO 3D
  • EVO Design (US)
  • Rezound (US)
  • Amaze (US)

As one of the largest producers of Android phones (the firm currently leads the pack in the U.S.), it comes as no surprise that the company is “thrilled … to announce the first wave of HTC phones that will receive upgrades”.

While HTC has been a little slow in rolling out previous OS updates, mainly due to compatibility tweaks with its lovely Sense UI, the Taiwanese giant knows how “excited our fans are to get their hands on Google’s latest version of Android”.

The brand new, U.S.-only, Vivid is first in line to get a slice of Android 4.0, with the handsets listed above due to be upgraded in “early 2012”. This includes the popular dual-core Sensation range (the XE also comes with Beats-branded audio for label-conscious audiophiles) and the Evo 3D, which adds an eye-popping (or straining, depending on your viewpoint) extra dimension.

Worryingly, for users of older HTCs (like this writer’s beloved Desire HD), there’s no mention of any plans for ICS update. This may be due to their single-core processors, which might struggle with such a power-hungry OS, but it’s more likely that the company is hoping users will upgrade their aging devices so they don’t miss out.

Tablet-wise, with the single-core HTC Flyer lagging behind the competition in the processing stakes, its more likely 4.0 will first be appearing on the firm’s next generation slates (expected to hit shelves early next year).

LG

Confirmed for ICS:

  • Optimus 2X

Rumoured for ICS:

  • Optimus 3D (rumoured)

With the naysayers of the internet claiming that LG’s flagship Optimus 2X would be deprived of Ice Cream Sandwich loveliness, the Korean company fired out a quick missive to quell owners' fears.

“These rumours are NOT true,” LG explained. The firm went on to stress that it’s planning the OS update for the Optimus 2X and “other LG high-end models”. Mind you, seeing as Gingerbread (Android 2.3) updates are still being rolled out for the Optimus, owners could be in for a long wait.

The Optimus 2x was the first dual-core Android phone, so it should pack enough processing power to melt an Ice Cream Sandwich. It makes sense, therefore, that the trailblazing Optimus 3D (the debut 3D ‘droid) would be next in-line, followed by its Honeycomb-toting tablet (the LG Slate).

Motorola

Confirmed for ICS:

  • Droid RAZR (Motorola RAZR in the UK)
  • Droid Bionic
  • Xoom
  • Xoom 2

Once a fading firm clinging to the pay-as-you-go market as a lifeline, the advent of Android has transformed Motorola’s fortunes. Not only was it the first company to launch a Honeycomb tablet (the stellar specced, but not stellar selling, Xoom), the company’s mobile phone wing has been bought by none other than Google itself.

Consequently, it comes as little surprise that Motorola has pledged ICS updates for two of its biggest phones (the Droid Bionic and November’s revamp of the ultra-slim RAZR brand). The 10.1-inch Xoom and its imminent successor, the cleverly named Xoom 2, are also in for some 4.0 upgrading action.

Samsung

Confirmed for ICS:

  • Galaxy Nexus
  • Galaxy S II

Rumoured for ICS:

  • Galaxy Tab 10.1
  • Nexus S

Samsung might be a bit preoccupied at the moment, what with all the Galaxy Nexus launch problems to fix, but that doesn’t mean its Ice Cream Sandwich plans have been left on the back burner (think of the gloopy mess).

The company has, however, been a little coy about its specific plans for Android 4.0. A statement simply said, “Samsung Mobile U.S. has not made any official announcement place for Ice Cream Sandwich for any of our U.S. products.”

The company’s UK Twitter account confirmed that “The Galaxy S II will be receiving ICS, but there are no dates confirmed as yet.”

It makes sense that such a wildly popular dual-core phone would be updated in the near future, but that still leaves a lot of devices waiting in the wings. Surely the acclaimed Galaxy Tab range (such as the 10.1 and recently launched 8.9) will be getting a leg up from Honeycomb? And what about Google’s own Samsung-made Nexus S (or the Galaxy S for that matter)?

Still, seeing as the reputation of ICS rests on it, maybe we should let Samsung worry about getting the Galaxy Nexus ship-shape first before we start pestering the company too much.

Sony Ericsson

Confirmed for ICS:

  • Xperia Arc/Arc S
  • Xperia Play

Rumoured for ICS:

  • Xperia Ray
  • Neo/Neo V
  • Xperia Mini/Mini Pro
  • Sony Tablet S/S 2

Arguably the most enthusiastic convert to Ice Cream Sandwich, Sony Ericsson plans “to upgrade our 2011 Xperia smartphone portfolio to the next Android platform made available to us”.

So it’s pretty safe to say that every Xperia phone released this year is in the frame for a 4.0 update. The Xperia Play, with its slide-out controls and stranglehold on the Android-exclusives, has already been confirmed along with the Xperia Arc dual-core handset.

With their PlayStation branding, it comes as no surprise that these gaming-led products are first in line, but there are plenty more devices queuing up patiently behind. The Ray, Neo, Mini, Pro, Active, and Live with Walkman were all launched in the right timeframe, so should be getting 4.0 in the next few months.

Less is known about Sony’s tablet products, namely the S1 and the clam shell-shaped S2. Both currently sport Honeycomb, so an upgrade seems likely, but the Xperia brand seems to be Sony’s focus for now.

The rest

They may not command as much media attention, but some of the smaller handset and tablet brands out there are dipping their tech toes into Android 4.0.

Here are those confirmed so far.

Confirmed for ICS:

  • ViewSonic - ViewPad series

Rumoured for ICS

  • ZTE V55 Tablet (release TBC)