In the run-up to the next Made By Google event typically held later in the fall, Google has already shared the first official picture of the Pixel 4, along with info on all the fancy sensors and tech stashed inside its top bezel.
But now, based on some new leaks uncovered by 9to5Google, we’re getting an even better idea of what to expect on the Pixel 4, including details regarding a few interesting new features.
Starting with the general specs, it appears that the Pixel 4’s screen will be getting a small bump up to 5.7 inches, up from 5.5 inches on the Pixel 3, while the Pixel 4 XL is holding pat with a 6.3-inch display. Both phones also reportedly feature the same resolutions as last year, with the Pixel 4 getting a full HD+ screen (probably around 2160 x 1080), while the Pixel 4 XL gets a QHD+ display with a resolution around 2960 x 1440.
But what may even be more important is that both Pixel 4 may get OLED screens with a “Super Smooth” 90Hz refresh rate, which is a feature Samsung failed to add to the recently announced Galaxy Note 10. This would put the Pixel 4 in a select crowd of phones with above-average refresh rates including the OnePlus 7 Pro and ROG Phone 2, whose screens tend to offer a more responsive and more fluid viewing experience.
Inside, the leak claims that the Pixel 4 will get an additional 2GB of RAM (for a total of 6GB), with onboard storage options ranging from 64GB to 128GB. And like pretty much every other high-end Android phone, the Pixel 4 will be powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 chip (instead of the recently announced SD 855 Plus).
The Pixel 4 is also expected to come with the Titan M security chip Google introduced on the Pixel 3 to help protect against malware and other online attacks, along with a handful of new, exclusive Google Assistant abilities.
The one potentially concerning thing about the Pixel 4’s rumoured specs though is its battery capacity. 9to5Google reports that the Pixel 4’s battery will have a 2800 mAh capacity, which is about five per cent smaller than the 2915 mAh battery in the Pixel 3.
While improvements in power efficiency derived from using a newer processor should help offset any shortcoming due to battery size, it still feels weird to see Pixel 4’s battery shrink. Thankfully, it seems the Pixel 4 XL is getting an upgrade in the battery department, as it’s slated to a get 3700 mAh battery (up from 3430 on the Pixel 3 XL).
But perhaps the biggest surprise in the leak is the mention of Google including a telephoto camera on the back of the Pixel 4 rather than the secondary ultra-wide-angle camera used on the front of the Pixel 3. The addition of a telephoto camera would be a first for any Pixel phone, and personally, it’s something I’ve wanted to see Google include for a long time.
Finally, the leak also mentions that Google is considering creating a DSLR-like attachment for the Pixel 4 that would presumably increase its picture-taking abilities even more.
So far, there’s not much to go on, but based on what Google has already been able to do with small smartphone camera sensors, I’m very curious to see how its computational photography wizardry might apply to a larger camera. And considering the Android itself started out as an OS designed for digital cameras, this would be a neat nod to its heritage too.
I’ve said this before, but after taking into account previously released information and these new leaks, the Pixel 4 is shaping up to easily be Google’s most exciting phone ever. And with Google’s design team in Taiwan having taken control of phone development for the first time with the Pixel 3a, Google could be entering into a new phase of its smartphone history.