We’ve been hearing about a mythical folding Pixel phone for years now, with rumors showing up intermittently since at least 2019. But now we have a small but encouraging leak that suggests Google could announce a ‘Pixel Fold’ soon — perhaps before the end of the year.
Developer cstark27, whom we’ve previously talked about for leaking the Pixel 6‘s camera sensor, also noticed that the Android 12 beta refers to a device codenamed ‘Passport.’ This has previously been rumored as the folding Pixel’s codename (and the name makes sense in terms of form factor). The code suggests Passport will be running the new, Samsung-made Google Tensor processor, and the phones will seemingly use a Samsung modem.
Oriole, Raven, Passport, “Slider” are 4 out of 5 devices that have a modem referenced as “g5123b”. The most recent Samsung Exynos (“shannon”) modem is 5123A. Can’t confirm the last one right now.
— cstark27 (@Cstark_27) August 11, 2021
‘Oriole’ and ‘Raven’ are the codenames for the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro, so it would seem Google has at least two more devices on the way with the new chip. Cstark27 points to an unnamed fifth device as well.
Rumors have suggested the folding pixel would use the same 7.6-inch, 120Hz display as on the Galaxy Z Fold 3, which wouldn’t be surprising. Samsung is the leader in folding screen tech right now, and Google has been cozying up to the company a lot lately, having collaborated on Wear OS 3 and reportedly worked together on the Tensor chip.
It’s not clear if Passport will make an appearance alongside the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro, or if Google will announce it later in the year. Considering the company already spoiled the ‘surprise’ of the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro, the Passport reveal could be a nice bonus for Google’s expected hardware event.
A folding Pixel would also indicate better interface support for folding devices in Android, a welcome change considering the technology is only going to become more mainstream in the years to come. If the rumor pans out, it’s just another sign that Google is finally getting serious about hardware.
(Via Android Central)
Did you know we have a newsletter all about consumer tech? It’s called Plugged In – and you can subscribe to it right here.