The geniuses at Google seem to have mastered the art of mocking Apple, and then doing the same thing for which they mocked Apple. Case in point, the headphone jack. Last year, the search engine giant made fun of Apple’s iPhone 7 for ditching the 3.5mm audio jack. A year later, the 3.5mm jack has disappeared from the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL. The first Google Pixel 3 rumors suggest that the company would follow Apple once again next year. And yes, it did mock its Cupertino rival for the same thing earlier this month.

Google Pixel 3 Rumors
Image Source: Google Store (screenshot)

Google Pixel 3 rumors hint best features to be kept for high-end model

During the Pixel 2 unveiling event, the search engine behemoth said it doesn’t keep the best features for the more expensive model. Google was clearly taking potshots at Apple (check out the video below). While the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL have the same camera, the iPhone 8’s single-camera isn’t as good as the iPhone 8 Plus. Apple kept many other premium features for the $1,000 iPhone X.

In one of the first Google Pixel 3 rumors, folks at Droid-Life have revealed the code-names for the 2018 Pixel phones. They are crosshatchblueline, and albacore. Yes, Google is working on three phones for the next year. Droid-Life claims that its source has been reliable in the past, proving to be accurate many times. The same source had mentioned the “taimen” code-name, which eventually turned out to be LG Electronics-made Google Pixel 2 XL.

Upon some further research, Droid-Life spotted the crosshatch code-named in the Android Open Source Project (AOSP) in reference to Pixel phones. The search engine giant will refer to them as A, B, and C to keep their identity secret. The source referred to all the three devices as “Pixel.” The publication claims that two of them will be “premium” smartphones while the third one would be a “high-end” device.

That’s interesting because, if true, it would look a lot like Apple’s 2017 smartphone lineup. Google’s Pixel phones have a pretty ordinary and uninspiring design, but the company is interested in making iPhone X-like all-screen phones in the future. In a recent interview with TechCrunch, Google’s product chief Mario Queiroz said that the company was keen to make all-screen smartphones.

Queiroz added that Google ditched the 3.5mm headphone jack from the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL because it didn’t fit the all-screen design strategy. This could also be the reason Apple dropped the audio jack from the iPhone 7 before introducing the bezel-less iPhone X. Queiroz said the primary reason to kill the audio jack from the Pixel 2 was to establish “a mechanical design path for the future.”

Assuming these Google Pixel 3 rumors are true, the company would keep some of the best features for the most expensive Pixel 3 version similar to what Apple did with the iPhone X. Google’s future product strategy helps explain why it launched the Pixel Buds earlier this month. Pixel Buds are a rival to Apple’s AirPods, and come with support for the Google Assistant.

Google investigating Pixel 2 XL problems

Droid-Life also noticed another mysterious device code-named wahoo. We don’t know what wahoo is, but we do know that Google code-names its hardware products after sea creatures. Folks at XDA Developers report that wahoo is not a Pixel device. It’s merely a “reference to the unified kernel for the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL.”

For now, Google is focused on investigating the numerous issues plaguing the brand-new Pixel 2 XL. Buyers have complained about the burn-in problem with the display. The Pixel 2 XL features P-OLED panels made by LG Display. LG is still a small player in the smartphone OLED technology. The burn-in issue causes a “shadow” or a “ghost” image to appear long after an element has disappeared. For example, you’ll see a shadow of the home, back, and multi-tasking buttons even when you are watching videos on your Pixel 2 XL.

Others have complained that both the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL produce clicking sounds and high-pitched noises from speakers when you hold up the phone to your ear. Some users have discovered that turning off NFC fixes the clicking sound problem, but the high-pitched noise persists.