Following the massive leaks by Artem Russakovskii and XDA Developers, the rumor mill thought they knew almost everything about Google’s upcoming Pixel phones that are expected to be called Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL. Ahead of Google’s October 4 event in San Francisco, a few leaked internal slides have surfaced that point to an Ultra pixel phone from Google. Could this be the superior sibling of the regular Pixel 2?
Does the name Ultra Pixel phone refer to a new device?
YouTuber Arun Maini of the Mrwhosetheboss (via Android Police) channel said he had received a few pictures and videos from an anonymous source. The leak indicates that the search engine giant could introduce something called an Ultra Pixel phone next week. Maini says the source secretly captured photos from a slide presentation in a Google office. The source is anonymous and unverified. So, the leak should be taken with a pinch of salt.
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However, the images appear to be legitimate. The style, branding, iconography, and the wallpapers lend some credibility to the pictures. Arun Maini speculates that the Ultra Pixel phone could be a third device in Google’s 2017 lineup, sitting above the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL. If true, Google’s lineup would look similar to Apple’s iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and the iPhone X.
You can’t be sure about that just yet. If you look at the picture carefully, the name Ultra Pixel phone has a lowercase “p”. It indicates that “Ultra pixel” could be a reference to the Google Pixel 2’s ultra high-resolution display or camera capabilities. Anyway, the images show that the Ultra Pixel phone will have incredibly slim bezels at the top. The side bezels have also become slimmer.
The caption on the second image reads, “The future of Android is Fluid” while a third image shows the Multitasking overlay at the bottom. Arun Maini speculates that it points to gesture controls on the Google Pixel 2 lineup. For a long time, Android phones have been controlled by a back, a menu, and a home command at the bottom of the screen. The Ultra Pixel phone could be controlled by gestures, similar to the iPhone X.
It has become increasingly difficult to reach the navigation keys as the phones increased in size. Gesture controls will allow you to hold the device wherever you want and still be able to operate it. Fluid could also hint at new animations and transitions on the Google Pixel 2 phones. The leak also indicates that the upcoming Pixel phones will have a new fingerprint technology. It’s not clear whether it refers to a new location for the fingerprint sensor or an entirely new technology such as an optical fingerprint sensor.
Pixel 2 to have dual stereo speakers, no headphone jack
The leak comes just a day after XDA Developers spilled the beans on the Google Pixel 2 features. Citing reliable sources, they reported that the Pixel 2 phones would feature dual stereo speakers on the front. Google’s upcoming flagship smartphones will have a single camera on the rear panel. But we can expect a significant jump in photography considering the last year’s Pixel phones are still one of the best when it comes to photo and video shooting.
XDA Developers added that the upcoming phones would have Portrait Mode similar to the iPhone 8 Plus. However, Google will achieve the blur effect through software, as the Pixel 2 will lack a telephoto lens. Google will also revamp the Pixel Launcher and move the search bar to the bottom of the screen. XDA Developers confirmed that the Pixel 2 would allow users to summon the Google Assistant by squeezing the phone’s frame, thanks to the HTC U11-like Active Edge technology.
The Google Pixel 2 will also have an always listening Music Recognition feature. It will recognize the music playing nearby automatically, and display the title and album on the lock screen. It’s for people who like a song playing on the car radio or in a cafe, but fail to recognize it. The Pixel 2 will also get an Always-On Display mode that will allow you to see the time and notifications without touching the phone.
The biggest highlight of the Pixel 2 phones will be the lack of the 3.5mm headphone jack. Yes, Google is removing the audio jack, probably to make the phone more water-resistant and make room for the stereo speakers. The company is said to include a USB to 3.5mm jack dongle in the Pixel 2 box. Google is also rumored to launch the AirPods-like wireless headphones code-named “Bisto,” but they are expected to be sold separately.
Other features include 4GB RAM, 64GB or 128GB of internal storage, and Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor. Droid-Life said last week that the regular Pixel 2 would be available in Clearly White, Kinda Blue, and Just Black colors. The handset will have a metal and glass design similar to the last year’s Pixel phones. The larger 6-inch Pixel 2 XL would come in Black & White and Just Black colors.
How much will the new Pixel phones cost?
The Google Pixel 2 will cost you $649 for the 64GB option and $749 for the 128GB model. If you choose to buy the larger Pixel 2 XL, it will have a starting price of $849 (64GB), which goes up to $949 for the 128GB model. If you are looking to trade-in your current Pixel or Pixel XL, the devices are eligible for the Google Store trade-in program. The search engine giant is offering handsome prices on older Pixel phones.
Google will be giving you $350 towards the new Pixel 2 purchase if you turn in a 32GB Google Pixel, and $360 if you trade in the 128GB model. If you trade in the larger Pixel XL you’ll get $400 for the 32GB and $410 for the 128GB version. Your current phone has to be in working condition with fully functioning display.