We’ve been talking about Google’s purported Pixel Fold foldable for a couple of years, following the various ups and downs of the project as they leaked online. But it sure looks like 2023 will be the year when Google launches its first foldable handset. We don’t have any official announcement from the company, nor do we expect one until mid-October.
What’s different from other years is the type of Pixel Fold leaks we’re getting. The phone has started popping up in real life, which might be a confirmation that Google is happy with its first foldable enough to begin testing it in the wild.
Again, Google isn’t confirming anything, and it’ll be a while until it does so. But the Pixel does have a standout feature that other devices can’t match. Everything about every Pixel/Nexus phone Google had made so far leaked in great detail well before Google unveiled them. And the rumors were always correct.
While the same goes for the newest Galaxy S phone, most Android flagships, and the iPhone, the Pixel leaks are different. Not only are the rumors exhaustive, but the actual devices leak out months in advance. Sometimes we get early hands-on videos with the handsets. We’ve also seen some Pixel phone sell on the black market before Google unveiled them.
That’s why we expect Pixel leaks to be accurate, whether it’s the Pixel Fold or the Pixel 8 series. And why Google has given up trying to prevent rumors from spreading.
The company has taken an entirely different approach to marketing the Pixel as a result. A few years ago, Google revealed the design and main Pixel 4 features months before the October launch. The same happened with the Pixel 7 handsets that got a teaser at I/O 2022 last May.
Therefore, it wouldn’t be surprising to see this year’s I/O edition deliver Pixel teasers, Pixel Fold included. And that’s considering the most recent Pixel Fold rumor that says Google is testing the foldable in the wild.
A Redditor thinks they saw the Pixel Fold on a train in New York, suspecting that a Googler was using it in the wild:
I’m on the A train in NYC and I got a glimpse of a Google employee with the pixel fold. The phone is very nice. The bezels on the outside are super thin. The guy is doing everything he can to cover up. He has a dark blue, black color phone. I am surprised at how thin the phone is.
The Redditor posted a few blurry photos of the handset, which appears to be used in folded mode. The hinge is at the top in the image below if that’s a foldable handset. Also, the external display seems tuite generous, featuring a more comfortable aspect ratio than Samsung’s Fold handsets.
There’s no way to verify the claims, and the pics are too blurry to match them against purported Pixel Fold renders out there. But the Redditor claims they saw a crucial identifying design element that confirms this is a Pixel handset: Google’s unique camera bump:
I couldn’t believe what I was seeing myself. The camera bump on the back gave it away and he was trying so hard to hide the camera bump.
Still, many would say these are just leaks, and that’s true. We can’t confirm any of that. But that’s why I mentioned the Pixel’s leak history. The leaks usually come true. That’s why it’s time to get excited about the Pixel Fold. It looks like the phone is finally coming.