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Mysterious 'Google Pixel 5s' breaks cover in new leaked shots

Could this be a Snapdragon 865 variant, or is it something much less exciting?

Published onSeptember 9, 2020

Google Pixel 4a review header
David Imel / Android Authority
  • An apparent Google Pixel 5 variant has leaked in new live-action shots.
  • The phone in question physically resembles the Pixel 5 as seen in previous leaks.
  • There are suggestions that this so-called “Pixel 5s” could support mmWave 5G.

We’ve seen plenty of purported shots of the Google Pixel 5, but new live images suggest another variant, namely the Pixel 5s, could be in the works.

The device in question, posted to Twitter by a Mexican radio personality, is reminiscent of the alleged Pixel 5 spotted in earlier leaks. The rounded square camera array with that second camera, the rear fingerprint sensor, and the punch-hole up front are all visible.

— Jose Antonio Ponton (@japonton) September 9, 2020

Where this device differs is its model name. As suggested on its information screen, this device is referred to as the Pixel 5s.

It’s not immediately clear what would set the Pixel 5s apart from the Pixel 5, but XDA‘s Mishaal Rahman believes that the differentiating feature could be the presence of mmWave 5G support.

What could the Pixel 5s be?

There’s generally no precedent for companies naming devices based on their mmWave smarts in this manner. These phones are often distinguished by suffixes (in the case of Samsung’s Galaxy A UW series and OnePlus 8 5G UW on Verizon), but we’ve not seen the “s” differentiator used in this way before.

That said, “s” has been used by a number of OEMs in the past to signify superior hardware, so it’s theoretically possible that Google could be preparing a tiered Pixel 5 lineup to tackle multiple price points if it’s not a mmWave variant.

While it is believed that the Pixel 5 could be powered by the Snapdragon 765G to keep costs down, Google flagships have previously sported 800-series Snapdragon chipsets. An “s” variant could allow the company to continue this trend but also offer a lower-cost variant too.

Little else can be gleaned from these shots, except that the phone is running an early version of Android 11 which is now officially rolling out to other Pixels and devices.

Next: The best Android 11 features you need to know

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