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Google Pixel 2 is a serious iPhone competitor—if these rumors are true

By on August 2, 2017

In a few months, there are two phones everybody’s gonna be talking about: the next iPhoneand Samsung’s Galaxy Note 8.

We’ve already learned just about everything there is to know about both of them, thanks to the constant drip of daily leaks. But there’s another highly anticipated phone that’s launching this fall that’s gonna give them both a serious run for their money: the Google Pixel 2.

Google joined #TeamPremium last year after replacing its Nexus phones with the Pixel and Pixel XL. Despite not being able to produce enough of them and some hardware issues, the Pixel has quickly become the symbol of what a pure Google phone should be.

The phone’s not quite on Samsung’s Galaxy level yet — not until it sells hundreds of millions of units — but if it keeps getting better, it could get there in a few years.

Given how great the Pixel is (dull design aside), we’re pretty pumped for the Pixel 2. Here’s what we’re expecting to see come this fall.

What it might look like

Physical parts — bodies, molds, camera modules, screens, etc. — haven’t leaked out yet, but leakers with proven track records have created renders based on all of the things they’ve heard. These pics should give you a sense of what the Pixel 2 might look like.

Google designed the Pixels, but HTC manufactured them. This time around, Google’s still crafting them, but LG’s reportedly been tapped to build the phones.

The body’s reportedly made of aluminum and the glass panel on the back that previously extended to cover the backside fingerprint sensor is said to be smaller.

It’s believed the improvements to the rear camera will mean a larger cutout that protrudes instead of sitting flush with the body.

OnLeaks and MySpartPrice’s renders in the video above also show what appears to be front-facing stereo speakers. It would be good use of the bezels, at least.

The fingerprint sensor’s expected to remain in the same spot (on the back) and there will definitely be a USB-C port for charging.

It won’t have a headphone jack?

 

A report earlier this year said the Pixel 2 won’t have a headphone jack. This week, another report claims the same.

It’s nice that phones like the Galaxy S8, LG G6, and OnePlus 5 have kept the headphone jack, but wireless audio is the future. While Google will likely get booed for removing it — the company threw shade at Apple for removing it last year — we think the port will be nixed.

HTC’s already cut the jack from its flagship phones and so has Motorola. Love it or hate it, the headphone jack’s days are numbered.

You can squeeze it?

That’s right. Google might pull an HTC U11 and include some kind of squeezable frame that’ll launch apps or shortcuts when you grip the Pixel 2.

Will it be powerful?

Oh, you bet your ass it will be. The Pixel 2 is Google’s flagship phone. It will have top-of-the-line specs, comparable or better than the Galaxy S8.

Word on the street is the phone might come with Qualcomm’s powerful Snapdragon 835 chipand 4GB of RAM — a combo that’s found in pretty much every 2017 flagship Android phone. If not the 835, then maybe a newer, slightly faster Snapdragon 836 chip. The Pixel has a Snapdragon 821 chip, which was an improved version of the 820 chip most 2016 flagship Android phones used, so it’s not impossible.

We’ve no idea how much storage the Pixel 2 will have, what its battery life will be, or if there will be a memory card slot.

How many models and what’s the screen size?

So far we’ve only heard about a 6-inch model with an 18:9 AMOLED display that may stretch edge-to-edge, but there could be a smaller model that’s closer to 5 inches. The resolution on the 6-inch model is said to be 2,880 x 1,440 — same as the LG G6.

XDA Developers has also heard the Pixel 2 might have an ambient always-on display, which means it would be able to display things like notifications, a clock, or calendar on the screen while it’s in standby, just like on the Galaxy S8.

It’ll run Android O

Google’s phones always launch with the latest version of Android and we expect the Pixel 2 to be no different. Whatever Android O ends up being called, the changes are largely under the hood.

O will bring better battery life, tidier notifications, picture-in-picture, and more features that won’t be immediately noticeable.

When will it launch?

The Pixel’s too new to have a release cycle history to go off. The Pixel was announced on Oct. 4, 2016 and it launched on Oct. 20. If Google sticks with an annual release — Rick Osterloh, senior vice president of hardware at Google suggests as much — the Pixel should come out sometime in October, too. It’d be just in time for the holidays.

How much will it cost?

The Pixel starts at $650 and the Pixel XL at $770, each with 32GB of storage. We’d love to see the Pixel 2 start with roughly the same pricing, but don’t be surprised if prices go up a bit if the phone has more storage and an edge-to-edge display.