UPDATE 21-Sep-2017: Ahead of the release of the Google Pixel 2 XL, it seems that the cat has been firmly let out of the bag. A major league has provided many of the details regarding this forthcoming Google device, meaning that there may be a few surprises when it is officially unveiled. Leaks also provided important data on the PixelBook and Home Mini from Google, as the mega-corporation readies itself for a major event in October.
Droid Life can be credited with this latest information, with the publication having acquired images, specs and pricing details of all devices to be launched by Google in the coming weeks. This really provided a valuable insight into the Pixel 2 XL; the phablet release of the two devices expected in the Pixel 2 generation.
Although the Pixel 2 will be the mainstream smartphone device in 2017, many consumers and market observers are actually looking forward to the Pixel 2 XL with more anticipation. This mobile will feature the more radical and revolutionary features, and is set to be the more exciting of the two releases.Image Source: Droid-Life.com (screenshot)
With this in mind, it is interesting to examine the information provided by Droid Life. Aside from providing new images of the forthcoming Pixel 2 XL, the publication also indicates that there will be three color variants released in 2017. Black and white versions of the Pixel 2 XL will be joined by a third model described as ‘Just Black’ in color, which may be rather similar to the Jet Black variant offered in iPhone releases.
Leaks also indicate that consumers will be offered 64GB or 128GB of storage when the Google Pixel 2 XL is released. This is perhaps still a little on the slim side, considering that Apple iPhone users can select a variant with 256GB of storage, and Samsung Galaxy devices come complete with Micro SD card capacity.
Droid Life also released details on pricing. According to the publication, the 64GB model of the Pixel 2 XL will cost $849, with the 128GB model increasing in price to $949. This suggests that the Pixel 2 will retail at around $749 for the entry-level unit.
Certainly these can be considered competitive prices, but the gap between the Google smartphone and its more established rivals has certainly narrowed significantly. Considering that the iPhone X can be purchased for only $50 more than the most expensive version of the Pixel 2 XL, this will certainly pose consumers with a serious decision. The Pixel series is certainly moving away from being a mid-range purchasing options, and instead becoming more of a premium release, with this $80 price hike.
Final confirmation on the specs to be included in the Google Pixel 2 XL has yet to come to fruition, though. Google has essentially managed to keep this key information rather quiet this year. However, many of the specifications are now strongly suspected by those who follow the Google mobile division closely, with inside information providing further clues.
Firstly, it is largely believed now that Google will ultimately opt for the Snapdragon 835 SoC to power the unit. There had been some reports that the state of the art Snapdragon 836 was being considered for the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL, but the consensus of opinion is now that Google will opt for the older processor.
Alongside the 835 unit should be 4GB of RAM memory. This would mean that the Pixel 2 XL is armed with the same quantity of RAM as the Galaxy S8, and more than the recent iPhone X release.
The screen of the Pixel 2 XL has also been pretty much confirmed by benchmarking. This critical data indicates that this forthcoming release will benefit from a virtually six-inch display (5.99-inches to be precise). Additionally, Google will arm the Pixel 2 XL with Quad HD resolution, ensuring that the display in the device should be rather impressive. However, it seems that there will be no wraparound display in the Google Pixel 2 generation, despite the popularity of this design parameter in the mobile industry.
Another major aspect of the Google Pixel 2 generation that will certainly be included in the Google Pixel 2 XL is the Active Edge technology that has been utilized previously by HTC. Users of the Pixel 2 XL will be able to squeeze the sides of the device in order to access various features and functionality. In particular, it is expected that the Google Assistant will be accessible via this innovation. HTC previously included a similar system in its U11 smartphone.
The leaked images of the Google Pixel 2 XL also seem to confirm that the manufacturer will remove the headphone jack that has been a prominent physical feature of the smartphone series. This was, of course, something that Apple already decided to do with the iPhone range, and it seems that Google is ready to follow suit. Assistant-powered wireless earbuds could be bundled with the smartphone in order to compensate for the removal of the port.
Aside from that the design of the Google Pixel 2 XL, it is also believed that the developer will face serious challenges in delivering enough units at launch. Google has already struggled to deliver satisfactory stock of both the original Pixel smartphone and previous Nexus releases, with demand continually outstripping supply.
Considering that Apple has recently switched to the OLED technology that Samsung has made so popular, it is thought that there may be a shortage of such displays for Google to utilize in its Pixel 2 range. This is something that the mega-corporation must address rapidly and efficiently if the Google Pixel 2 XL is to be a major success.
UPDATE 30-Aug-2017: With the Galaxy Note 8 having been unveiled and the iPhone 8 imminent, the Google Pixel 2 XL completes a triumvirate of intriguing phablet releases. The Samsung device is expected to deliver premium features that rival the market leaders in 2017, as Google invests an increasing amount of energy in its hardware products.
So the latest reports on this device are interesting to analyse, particularly as it seems that Google will opt for a virtually bezel-less display for its premium phablet. There has been some debate over this matter, with other whispers suggesting that the screen could feature a more conventional design.
It is now settled that LG will be involved in the manufacturing of the Pixel 2 XL for Google, meaning that the designer will likely incorporate common design elements from LG devices. The latest LG G6 certainly embraced a display with seriously slimmed down bezels, and this is now expected to appear in the Pixel 2 XL release.
While Google will want its smartphone to differ from other devices to a certain extent, the fact remains that LG is unlikely to produce something too radically departed from previous handsets.
Another reason for Google to embrace the bezel-less display in its premium handset is that it could seem rather superfluous without this feature. There is no doubt that this design element is becoming the zeitgeist of the smartphone industry, and Google doesn’t want to be left behind at a time when both Apple and Samsung are embracing this new radical design.
While Apple has remained as hushed as usual about the forthcoming iPhone 8, indeed not even confirming its existence as of yet, it is expected that the device will feature a wraparound OLED display. And Samsung has strongly adopted this approach with its recent releases, unveiling a Galaxy Note 8 device that is rather similar in design to the existing Galaxy S8.
Although it may be considered something of a disappointment that the smaller Google Pixel 2 will reportedly not feature this design, this shouldn’t be considered too damaging in commercial terms. Apple will also be releasing handsets in 2017 that do not have wraparound displays, instead representing upgrades of previous iPhone 7 models. Thus, it seems entirely reasonable for Google to market the Google Pixel 2 XL as a premium handset.
Google Pixel 2 XL Specs
Aside from its physical design elements, Google must also deliver outstanding specifications with its premium phablet if it is to attract consumers. Beauty is only skin deep, and what lies under the hood of the Google Pixel 2 XL will determine its success as much as the new wraparound-based design.
Thus, it is intriguing to know that the Google Pixel 2 XL is being strongly linked with the new Snapdragon 836 chipset. This is obviously an update over the 835 version that appeared in other flagship devices earlier this year, such as the aforementioned Galaxy S8. The inclusion of this new chipset obviously hints at improved performance, although the general consensus of opinion is that this will not be a quantum leap by any means.
Considering the effort that Google has made to include the most powerful processor possible, it is thus perhaps slightly surprising that the Google Pixel 2 XL is expected to feature only 4GB of RAM. While this is still a competitive figure, and indeed more than is included in the iPhone series, it is still less than some of the premium smartphones available on the market.
But Google is continually considering production costs when putting together the Google Pixel 2 XL, with the device intended to be a mid-range product. Google can ill afford to release its next-generation phablet at a similar price point to the whopping figures being linked with both the Galaxy Note 8 and iPhone 8. It is thought that the most expensive version of the iPhone 8 may retail at around $1,200, and while this is feasible for the iconic Apple handset, it doesn’t really seem like a viable strategy for Google.
Instead, it is believed that the Google Pixel 2 XL will retail at well under $800. A figure of around $749 for the entry-level version of the smartphone is likely. This would enable Google to gain a competitive advantage over its rivals, and effectively position the Google Pixel 2 XL as a mid-range unit, still featuring the functionality of a premium mobile.
Another disappointment, though, with the Google Pixel 2 XL is the lack of a dual-lens camera. this is another feature that is becoming a defining aspect of the smartphone industry in 2017, yet Google has seemingly opted against including such a device in its premium phablet. This could once again be related to cost considerations, as obviously a dual-camera would bump up production investment.
However, considering that the camera in the original Google Pixel XL device was extremely well received, this should not necessarily be viewed as a disaster. Nonetheless, the augmented reality functionality that Apple will probably push strongly when the iPhone 8 is released will be conspicuous by its absence in the Google Pixel XL generation.
Google is also strongly expected to remove the headphone port from the Google Pixel XL generation, which is naturally applicable to the Google Pixel 2 XL. While this was not universally popular when Apple removed the port from the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, consumers have acclimatized to the decision now, and Google’s verdict on a headphone jack is likely to be viewed as considerably less controversial.
Android Oreo coming
With Android Oreo expected to debut in the Google Pixel XL releases, this promises to be an intriguing and feature-packed release. This update was recently announced for the existing Pixel devices. “Verizon Wireless is pleased to announce a new software update for your Pixel / Pixel XL Phone by Google. Android 8.0 Oreo improves your mobile experience with several new features and enhancements,” a statement read.
Late last year, Google entered the smartphone market with its Pixel handsets. At the time, due to their size, they filled the void left by the Galaxy Note 7. Now in mid-2017, rumors are circling about what could come next, with talk about some fantastic Google Pixel 2 XL specs that are good enough to compete with the Galaxy S8 and maybe even a future Note or the iPhone 8.
Google Pixel 2 XL specs
As you can imagine, there isn’t much to go on where this phone is concerned. However, where there’s a will, there’s often a way. So we can share with you some details, but since these are rumors, you should take them with a grain of salt.
Just a few days ago, details surrounding what can be expected leaked to XDA-developers. This leak came via a source who claims to have spent some time with the device and now knows the Google Pixel 2 XL specs.
According to the supposed leak, the Pixel 2 XL will feature a 5.99-inch OLED display. If you have previously seen the name Taimen used to describe a next-gen Pixel, this is believed to be the handset it is referring to. However, we can now tell you that HTC will not be involved with the manufacturing. Instead, Google turned to LG.
First up on the rumored Google Pixel 2 XL specs is the display, which will supposedly be a quad HD OLED panel with a resolution of 2560 x 1440. It is also expected to feature significantly smaller bezels than its predecessors.
Chipset, storage and RAM
Remember when we said that you should take this with a grain of salt? Don’t forget that, as we don’t know anything for certain. However, as a flagship, we expect the Google Pixel 2 XL specs to include at least a Snapdragon 835 chipset, 128GB of internal storage and at least 4G of RAM.
XDA-Developers’ source indicated that the same two-toned metal and rear glass design will make a reappearance, but with one key difference from last year’s models. It won’t cover the fingerprint sensor. In fact, the location of this sensor is a source of debate, with some suggesting that it will be featured next to a single rear camera lens. Others suggest it could be moved, maybe to the front underneath the display? Perhaps, but that’s probably just wishful thinking.
Lastly, according to XDA, the 3.5mm headphone jack that the Pixel 2 doesn’t have will return on its larger sibling. We’re not sure why, but you can bet if we hear anything about it, we will inform you.
Possible release date?
With the launch of the previous generation of Pixel handsets taking place last October, there is no reason to doubt that we are within four months of the next launch. However, with the Google Pixel 2 XL specs and its design possibly being on off-shoot of a previously rumored big handset, it could be that more work is required from LG to get it ready. That means we may have to wait until November; however, there is no definitive information available either way.
So with the release possibly months away, we could be in for a tumultuous time, what with leakers, rumor-mongers, and industry insiders all having their say. However, as always, we will be here to sift through the good and downright fake; you will just have to be patient.
What do you hope to see in the Google Pixel 2 XL specs sheet? Share you thoughts in the comments section below.