A render of the Google Pixel 3 based on recent Pixel 3 leaks and rumorsPhone Designer

In this post, which will be updated regularly, we’ll be looking at the latest rumors surrounding the Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL. 


Last year’s Google Pixel 2 received plenty of acclaim, even if they chose to drop the headphone jack. Despite the audio port disappointment, you were getting a powerful phone, stock Android, and a great camera experience.

What will the Mountain View company bring this year? Well, the Google Pixel 3 rumor mill has just started chugging in recent days, giving us a few potentially tasty morsels of information.

Code names may hint at three new Pixel phones, and maybe a fourth

The current rumors seem to suggest that Google may launch as many as three Pixel phone models in 2018. Way back in October 2017, an unconfirmed report claimed that the code names for the next Pixel phones would be “albacore,” “blueline,” and “crosshatch.” Since then ASOP commits from Google have referenced both “crosshatch” and, this week, “blueline”. At the moment, we have yet to see a reference to “albacore” in ASOP.

However, there’s now another unconfirmed report, from WinFuture.de, that claims Google is working on a new phone that could launch in the first half of 2019. The same site claims the code name for the phone is “bonita” and that it will use the newly announced Qualcomm Snapdragon 710 processor that’s designed for mid-range ($400-$500) devices. This may be the second generation of such a device from the company. There are still rumors that Google could launch a new mid-range phone sometime in the summer of 2018, that would target developing markets like India.

Notch your usual Pixel?

Probably the biggest question on everyone’s lips is whether the Pixel 3 will adopt the controversial display notch. Well, first of all, a report out of Korea claims that LG Display is supplying notched OLED screens to Google. The report didn’t clarify whether this was for a particular smartphone, but that’s where the next report comes in…

A Bloomberg report this week, citing “people familiar with the matter,” says the Pixel 3 XL will have a notched display. The sources add that the standard model will steer clear of the cutout.

The two reports follow unsubstantiated Twitter and Weibo leaks, claiming a notch for the XL model as well.

In other words, we can expect a notch for at least one new Google phone, according to the Korean and Bloomberg reports.

How would a notched Pixel 3 look? The person behind the Phone Designer Twitter account has crafted a concept that takes the leaks into account (see above tweet). You can get a better view of the notch (and the entire phone) by checking out the leaked images of the Pixel 3 XL below.

Design

Will the Google Pixel 3 continue the Pixel series design language?

The Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL were manufactured by HTC and LG, but that was before Google acquired HTC’s hardware team. So what should we expect now?

According to WinFuture.de, Google is partnering with Foxconn subsidiary FIH Mobile to manufacture the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL. FIH Mobile isn’t a new entrant either, producing HMD’s Nokia-branded smartphones.

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The Bloomberg report also mentions Foxconn, merely saying that Google is in talks with the company to manufacture the phones.

Although we’re still months away from the reveal of the Pixel 3 series, we might already know what the larger model will look like. A senior XDA Developers forum member meraz9000 shared quite a few images allegedly showing the Pixel 3 XL from all angles — check them out below.

google Pixel 3 XDA-Developers

If the images are legit, the smartphone will have an all-glass back. At first glance, the Pixel 3 XL seems to feature the same metal-back-and-glass-window design as the current generation. But on closer examination, you can see that the back is actually one slab of glass with a matte finish on the lower part. This could mean the handset will support wireless charging, although nothing has been confirmed yet.

The images reveal that the phone could feature a notch, which not everyone is a fan of. They also tell the same story as previous rumors, which is that the flagship will sport a single camera on the back, two on the front, and dual front-facing speakers. And no, the headphone jack won’t make a return.

Keep in mind while this leaked Pixel 3 XL unit seems legitimate, it’s still likely just a prototype or engineering sample. The design of the commercial model could be different.

We haven’t come across images showing the Pixel 3 yet, but we expect it to look similar to the XL model — at least from the back. The front might be a different story, as the device may not feature a notch (Hurray!). Hopefully, it also won’t have those ugly thick bezels found on its predecessor.

Pixel-pushing horsepower?

The Pixels stick to Qualcomm’s flagship-level Snapdragon chipsets, such as the Snapdragon 821 in the original Google Pixel and the Snapdragon 835 in the Pixel 2 range.

The Pixel 3 duo is unsurprisingly tipped to arrive with the Snapdragon 845 processor, WinFuture reports. Unless Qualcomm has a slightly upgraded processor ready for Google (like they had with the Snapdragon 821), it can only be the Snapdragon 845.

RAM and storage options aren’t known just yet, but 4GB to 6GB of RAM and 64GB/128GB storage options are safe guesses.

What about the cameras?

Like the Pixel 2, Google Pixel 3 is rumored to have a single camera

The Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL managed to deliver portrait mode without the need for a dual camera setup. In fact, Google’s HDR+ feature and portrait mode makes a strong case for computational photography paired with a single camera setup.

Bloomberg reports that the new phones will feature upgraded but still single-lens cameras. The larger phone is apparently packing two selfie cameras though, ostensibly for improved bokeh trickery, authentication and/or wide-angle shots.

Google Pixel 3 release date?

Google traditionally launches its Pixel devices at its fall hardware event in the second half of the year. In fact, the last two Pixel generations were unveiled on October 4 — will it be three in a row? This doesn’t quite jive with WinFuture‘s August/September timeline. One thing’s for sure though: you will almost certainly get the Pixel 3 in time for Christmas.

Google Pixel 3 price?

The Pixel 2 order screen. Google Store

Back in 2016, Google had a starting price of $649 for the 32GB Pixel, while the entry-level Pixel 2 maintained the same price and doubled the storage. The 128GB Pixel and Pixel 2 models also shared the same $749 price tag. Price increases are inevitable, but here’s hoping Google maintains the same pricing for the standard Pixel 3.

Moving to the large models, the first-generation 32GB Pixel XL came in at $769, while the 64GB Pixel 2 XL has a price tag of $849. At the top end, the 128GB Pixel XL came in at $869, while the 128GB Pixel 2 XL has a $949 price tag. Could we see the top-end Pixel 3 XL breach the $1000 barrier?

Will the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL fare better than their predecessors? What do you want to see from the two smartphones? Let us know in the comments below!

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