Thursday, May 30, 2024

Something strange might happen to the Google Pixel Fold 2

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Leaked render of the Google Pixel Fold 2 design.Google Pixel Fold 2 render SmartPrix / OnLeaks

It seems the “Pixel Fold” line is dead at Google after merely a single outing. Instead, Google is planning to fold it into the mainline Pixel series of flagship phones. According to Android Authority, which cites software builds targeting Google’s upcoming phones, the next Google foldable might go by the name “Pixel 9 Pro Fold” rather than the expected Pixel Fold 2 branding.

Now, this is not official information, and multiple reliable leak sources have been using the Pixel Fold 2 name liberally; it’s quite plausible that the Pixel 9 Pro Fold could just be an internal name to streamline software development. As such, process these rumors with a hefty dose of skepticism.

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Naming shenanigans aside, the upcoming phone’s internal hardware seems promising. Google will reportedly arm it with the fourth-gen Tensor processor, which is also said to embrace a new modem that could finally address the awful connectivity situation on Pixel smartphones.

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With a new processor in tow, we are not only looking at more firepower, but also a few other crucial benefits. Compared to the Google Pixel 8 series, especially the Pro model, the Pixel Fold didn’t get as much attention in the camera department. In addition, the software update commitment didn’t warrant its $1,800 asking price.

Andy Boxall / Digital Trends

With the Tensor G4 chip coming into the picture, we can expect an update frame that covers at least seven years, equaling the mainline flagship Pixel smartphones. Also, support for generative AI tricks will no longer be an afterthought, nor will there be many concessions in the camera capabilities.

Leaks suggest that a fresh design is in the pipeline, one that reimagines the camera island aesthetics and marries them with flattened sides. We are also hearing chatter of a larger 6.4-inch cover display and a 7.9-inch inner display with dramatically thinner bezels this time around.

It’s unclear whether the camera hardware is getting an upgrade. Purported renders that have appeared online suggest a triple-rear camera array with a periscope-inspired folded lens zoom system. Notably, it seems the Pixel Fold 2 (or Pixel 9 Pro Fold) could be the thinnest foldable phone on U.S. soil when it hits store shelves.

We are hoping for a reveal this fall, but it won’t be surprising to see Google drop a teaser (or two) at its upcoming I/O 2024 developer conference next month.

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