Due to various leaks, rumors, and our own reporting, we have a pretty good idea of what Google has planned for this year’s Pixel and Pixel XL. A new report today corroborates several specs — like the lack of a headphone jack — and provides the first live images of the device.
As we first noted all the way back in March, and reiterated yesterday, the Pixel and Pixel XL — even after the latter’s relatively last-minute swap from ‘muskie’ to ‘taimen’ — will not have 3.5mm headphone jacks. This move would have always been contentious, though Google’s teasing at the original Pixel launch last year certainly does not help.
Recent months have mostly seen renders of the Pixel XL, with the Pixel’s design going mostly unknown. However, thanks to today’s Pixel image from VentureBeat, we now know that the smaller device will not adopt the same design as its larger sibling. The key difference is its smaller size, along with top and bottom bezels on the front side that remain just as large as last year’s offering.
As such, the common complaint from last year will carry on, though the rear has been redesigned to match the Pixel XL’s shorter glass frame that no longer encompasses the fingerprint sensor.
The report notes that Google ordered “only iterative design changes” for the Pixel, while corroborating our own discovery back in early June that LG is indeed manufacturing making this year’s XL. Despite that, two features widely associated with HTC are coming to both devices. In lieu of a headphone jack, both devices will feature front-facing stereo speakers, as well as a squeezable frame.