, we got our first glimpse at what Google might have cooking for the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL, thanks to a screen protector leak that hints at some big design changes coming to Google’s phone later this year. We even saw some renders based on that leak earlier today, and actually, things don’t look nearly as bad as we initially thought.
Of course, all those renders were based off a leaked screen protector, which is about the least reliable kind of leaked image you can get. But Bloomberg‘s Mark Gurman, best known for his impressive track record of iPhone leaks, just published a report describing the new Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL, and while there aren’t any images, the devices match up perfectly with those earlier leaks.
Read this description of the two devices, and tell me that it doesn’t line up exactly with those screen protectors we showed you earlier this week:
The larger phone is designed with a nearly edge-to-edge screen, except for a thicker bezel known as a chin at the bottom of the phone. The display also will have a notch — or a cutout — at the top. The smaller model will look similar to the Pixel 2 and won’t include the notch or edge-to-edge look, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the plans aren’t yet public.
Here’s the render based on the leaked screen protector, from Phone Arena:
The notch you can see on the Google Pixel 3 XL render is noticeably smaller than the notch on the iPhone X, and has a more rectangular style, compared to the trapezoid shape of the iPhone X’s notch. And yep, that’s exactly what Gurman describes here:
The notch, or cutout, at the top of the new larger Pixel’s screen won’t be as wide as a similar feature on the iPhone X, but is noticeably taller, according to the people.
He also says that the Pixel 3 XL’s notch will have two camera lenses, with just one camera lens on the back. Presumably, one of those lenses on the front will be the selfie camera, while the other could be a depth-sensing or infrared camera used for facial recognition.
The big design difference between the Pixel 3 XL and the iPhone X is most obviously the chin, which Google is said to be keeping because it wants to retain stereo speakers on the front of its device. Having a chin also allows makes the touchscreen component much cheaper, as Apple had to special-order the part for the iPhone X, which helps explain the Apple phone’s sky-high price.
Reading between the lines, Gurman also gives us an idea of where he might have got this information. He isn’t known for leaking details about upcoming Google designs, but a line in this report is very telling:
Google has discussed building its phones for the first time with Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., also known as Foxconn, the same manufacturer that assembles iPhones, one of the people said.
Foxconn has been Apple’s primary iPhone assembler since the beginning, and it’s also the source of a good number of iPhone leaks. If Google discussed building its phones through Foxconn, that could explain how Gurman has the details.
It’s also important to note all the hedges in the piece, however. “The plans for the new Pixels could change before the phones are released,” the report says, which indicates that the designs we’re seeing right now could be one of a number of options that Google has been shopping around to different manufacturers, and so could be out of date.