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Pixel 4 rumored to have another great feature that’s missing from the iPhone 11

Published Sep 16th, 2019 10:12AM EDT

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Since the inception of the Pixel line, Google has been playing catchup with the iPhone, as each new model proved more conclusively that the iPhone was the obvious inspiration for Google’s premium phones. The first Pixel looked a lot like the iPhone 7; the second-gen dumped the 3.5mm headphone jack just like the iPhone did a year earlier; the Pixel 3 XL came with a notch, albeit a much uglier one that what Apple did, and Android 9 replicated the iPhone X’s new navigation gestures. With the Pixel 4, Google will copy even more of Apple’s iPhone design playbook, bringing 3D face authentication to the Pixel line alongside native Android support for the feature (two years after the iPhone X), as well as a multi-lens camera on the back (several years after the iPhone). But the Pixel 4 will also introduce a feature that the iPhone 11 doesn’t have, and that’s the Project Soli radar-based gesture support that’s already confirmed for the handset. Now, a brand new leak tells us the Pixel 4 might have one more advantage over the iPhone 11 this year.

When it comes to Soli, it’s too early to tell whether Google found a way to make gesture-based interaction something that’s worthwhile on Android phones. We know that LG tried to use a front-facing camera for both 3D face unlock and interacting with the phone without touching the screen, but it’s not something others hurried to copy. Soli uses radar, so that’s definitely something not seen on any iPhone, Android phone, or even on other popular types of consumer electronics. Regardless of whether it’s successful or not, Soli radars likely won’t make it to the iPhone anytime soon. At least, there aren’t any rumors suggesting that’ll be the case for next-gen Apple devices.

The other Pixel 4 feature that the iPhone 11 doesn’t have will be available on future iPhones as soon as 2020. That’s 5G support, something Apple has no interest in being first at. 
As was the case with the first iPhones that supported 3G and 4G, Apple is willing to wait for carriers to increase their 5G foothold before launching a 5G iPhone of its own… though it’s a move that doesn’t have consumers’ best interests in mind.

Google wasn’t expected to make a 5G Pixel 4 either this year, until the following benchmark surfaced. IndiaShops first found this Geekbench 5 test for a Pixel 4 XL 5G phone that we haven’t seen before.

Image source: Geekbench

The benchmark was recorded on Sunday, according to the screenshot, revealing the phone will feature 8GB of RAM and a Snapdragon processor, while also running Android 10.

Yes, the Pixel 4 will pack the same Qualcomm chip as all the other 2019 Android flagships out there, and that’s the Snapdragon 855. This also happens to be the only Qualcomm chip that comes with 5G support for the time being, so it would make some sense for Google and Qualcomm to work together on a Pixel 4 version with 5G.

It’s just a little strange that we haven’t heard anything about a 5G Pixel 4 so far, given that Google’s phones are never well-kept secrets. On the other hand, some reports did spot three different internal codenames associated with the Pixel 4 series. Maybe one of them is this Pixel 4 XL version that includes support for 5G.

While the benchmark page is available here we’ll point out there’s no guarantee the device is real. As for the low scores, we’re looking at a Geekbench 5 test here, which brings a different method of scoring the performance of mobile devices, so there’s no need to worry about these figures. The Galaxy S10 scores similarly in the Geekbench 5 test.

Image source: Geekbench

Interestingly enough, there’s also a Geekbench 4 benchmark available for the same device, featuring scores in line with the performance of other 2019 Android flagships. And this benchmark was also recorded on September 15th (see above).

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.