Here's What We Know About The Soon-To-Be-Unveiled Google Pixel 4
While the eternal smartphone struggle will always be headlined by bouts between the iPhone and whatever invariably superior Galaxy Samsung have cooked up to beat it, Google's Pixel now pretty firmly seems to have the title of under-appreciated contender locked down.
People who switch to the Pixel rarely go back, and in the areas that matter most to consumers – battery, camera quality, ease of use when it comes to an Android phone – there aren't all that many handsets out there that deliver a well-rounded package with the minimalist style of Google's offering.
As such, the Pixel in its many iterations has steadily become one of the most speculated-on, talked-about and leaked handsets in the industry, but in a decidedly bold move, Google have taken the first step of dropping the first details on what's next: the Pixel 4.
The 'intentional leak,' as some are calling it, will immediately put the likes of Apple, Samsung and Huawei on notice, as they're the first to show a hand that includes an entirely re-imagined camera with three different lens and sensor set ups. This is tech that's already made its way into the Huawei Mate 20 Pro, of course, but also a system that both Apple and Samsung are known to be working on for their next generation of flagship phones.
According to other sources who do their business in tech-based rumours and speculation, a number of other features are thought to be making their way to the Pixel 4, which is thought to be launching in October. Here's everything Google have confirmed, plus what we think may also be coming to the handset so far:
This is a first for Google, who have long lagged behind the iPhone in the options they give to users when it comes to mobile security. Google hopes that this will not only match the convenience of Apple's Face ID, but also improve on it. "Face unlock works in almost any orientation – even if you’re holding it upside down – and you can use it for secure payments and app authentication too,” confirmed Google in their blog post detailing the new features.
All of your biometric data will also be secured locally and not shared on any of Google's remote servers: a big security win after years of previous Facial Unlocking features on Android phones proving to be less secure.
Pixel 4, if rumours are to be believed, will be the first realisation of what Google calls Project Soli: the company's first in-house stab at making a dedicated processing chip. It was first announced at their I/O event back in 2016, and its main function is to help usher in a new era of gesture-based navigation. Apparently, it'll work with the use of a radar sensor that'll allow you to control your smartphone, smartwatch and even smart speakers through hand gestures alone. This could be important, as the Pixel 4 will also reportedly lack a fingerprint scanner altogether.
Google's post states that "Pixel 4 will be the first device with Soli, powering our new Motion Sense features to allow you to skip songs, snooze alarms, and silence phone calls, just by waving your hand. These capabilities are just the start, and just as Pixels get better over time, Motion Sense will evolve as well."
They even speculated that it might get to the point where your phone will be able to detect you reaching for it and unlock itself. Because who needs to touch anything anymore?
A triple camera set-up
The soon-to-be-commonplace square camera bump will soon adorn the back of the Google Pixel range, and like Huawei and Samsung, it'll also house a triple camera set-up that makes use of three different lenses and sensors to take photos with the best light balance, depth of field, clarity, and colour.
New rumours suggest that the Pixel 4 will actually be replacing the second ultra-wide camera with a telephoto lens.
Also set to launch alongside the Pixel 4 will be Android Q, which will likely debut in native form on Google's own hardware. Just what that means in terms of new capabilities is still fairly mysterious, but the software has been in Beta for some time now, with improvements to connectivity, camera and photo editing, UI and Siri all planned.
After a number of further leaks surfaced, industry experts are now claiming the Google Pixel 4 will boast a 5.7-inch size, making it slightly larger than the Pixel 3. There will also be a 6.3-inch Pixel 4 XL with 1080 HD+ and 2960 x 1440. QHD+ resolutions, respectively, with 90hz of framerate for silky-smooth operation.
Under the hood, it's also believed that the Pixel 4 will come installed with a 6GB RAM upgrade, with both 64Gb and 128GB storage options available. That said, it's also expected that the phone will get the regular 855 Snapdragon Plus Chip.
So, when is Pixel 4 coming?
The above image says it all really. Google are slated to be dropping the details of their new hardware at an unveiling event On October 15 in New York City. As Google have teased a few more 'Made by Google' things, it's also thought that the event will serve as the stage for Google to unveil updates on some of their older smart home tech, with a replacement for the Google Home Mini and maybe the original Google Home Speaker speculated by Engadget. The Verge also report that Google are working on an update for the Pixelbook laptop, but that's probably a reveal planned for further down the line.