Pixel 3 XL hands on

If you picked up the Google Pixel 3 XL, give yourself a pat on the back. You just bought one of the best Android smartphones available, even as we head deeper into 2019. That said, one of the Pixel 3 XL’s biggest turn-offs is its bathtub-like notch that’s oddly reminiscent of a robot face. The good news is that you can hide that obnoxious-looking notch.

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Google doesn’t exactly make it easy to hide the notch, but the option is there if you dig enough. Of course, the notch doesn’t really disappear — the software simply blacks out the sides of the notch to make the top appear like one uniform bezel. At this point, though, we’ll take what we can get.

Here’s how to hide the Pixel 3 XL’s notch:

  1. Use your preferred method to navigate to Android settings on your Google Pixel 3 XL.
  2. Scroll all the way to the bottom of the list and tap on System.
  3. Within System, tap the first option — About Phone.
  4. Within About Phone, scroll all the way to the bottom where you’ll see your device’s build number.
  5. Repeatedly tap on your build number about six or seven times.
  6. Eventually, you’ll be asked to re-enter your PIN. Enter it.
  7. You’ll see a notification that says, “You are now a developer!”
  8. Head back now to the System page where you should see Developer Options (if you don’t, tap the Advanced toggle).
  9. Within Developer Options, you’ll see a ton of settings. You’re looking for the one that says Device Cutout.
  10. Tap on Device Cutout, and then tap Hide.

Once you’ve done all of that, here’s what’s waiting for you:

You lost a bit of real estate when you enable the option, but the result makes the change worth it. The option’s certainly a lot trickier to find than it is on the OnePlus 6T (navigate to Settings > Display > Notch Display and then turn it off), but at least the option is there.

Here’s hoping that Google will make it easier to hide the notch in future updates to Pixel software.

NEXT: Pixel 3 series to get guaranteed feature, security updates until October 2021

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