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Google really wants you to see its Pixel 8 Pro leaks before the iPhone 15 launches

Published Sep 6th, 2023 10:56AM EDT
Google Pixel 7 Pro Display
Image: Christian de Looper for BGR

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The iPhone 15 is coming next week, and analysts expect strong sales that will help Apple weather the economic storm while everyone else suffers. There’s even a scenario where Apple could become the world’s top smartphone seller of the year, displacing Samsung from the top spot it has held onto for years.

That’s what I think about every time I see Google leak the Pixel 8 Pro again. At this point, these leaks can’t be accidental. With the Pixel 8 event set for October 4th, long after tens of millions of buyers have purchased an iPhone 15, it’s unlikely to put a dent in Apple’s sales.

But Google must really want you to see the Pixel 8 phones right now. After all, Google just kicked off an anti-iPhone 15 ad campaign that already mocks Apple’s late switch to USB-C.

The Pixel 8 Pro is the best Pixel phone Google can make this year, and it’s a direct competitor to the iPhone 15 Pro Max. On paper, at least. It’s also a phone that appeared in numerous leaks so far this year, to the point where we think we already know everything about it.

But in the past few days, we saw a couple of Pixel 8 Pro leaks that come directly from Google. First, the Pixel 8 Pro appeared on Google’s Store website in what seemed like an innocent mistake. Google might have accidentally uploaded a Pixel 8 Pro image instead of something older. Even back then, I said the timing of the leak might indicate an intentional marketing ploy.

A few days later, Google posted a full 360-degree preview of the Pixel 8 Pro that Android enthusiasts quickly found. Mishaal Rahman is one of them, as seen above.

It wasn’t that carefully hidden, to begin with. All you need to do to find it is type the Pixel 8 Pro name in the URL of Google’s Pixel 360-degree simulators, and you’ll get access to it.

Google has since removed the imagery, but the damage has been done. Well, “damage” is a bit much, regardless of whether or not Google is doing this intentionally. Even if it’s still an accident, it’s not like the Pixel 8 was a well-kept secret until now. In keeping with Pixel tradition, everything about the phone has already leaked.

The new leak confirms the Pixel 8 Pro colors: Licorice, Porcelain, and SkyLicorice, Porcelain, and Sky. That’s on top of confirming the leaked Pixel 8 Pro design. Moreover, the 360-degree preview shows the Pixel 8 phones will come with a SIM slot, which means Google isn’t going eSIM-only like Apple.

Moreover, the Pixel 8 Pro preview confirms that the phone features a rear-facing temperature sensor. Pixel fans may recall a previous leak from Google, a video that popped up in May showing how the temperature sensor will work.

The Pixel 8 preview page might not work for now, but it’ll probably be up by October 4th.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.