I’ve been tracking Pixel Fold leaks since before Google first “delayed” the long-running foldable rumors in late 2021, watching leakers call it the Galaxy Z Fold 3, then the Z Fold 4 twin, and now something like the Oppo Find N.
Right now, leaked evidence points to a thick, foldable square shape with Google’s signature Pixel camera strip and Tensor hardware. In theory, it’s a recipe for success.
Overall, we’re big Pixel fans on the Android Central team. I really love the Pixel 6 and am so jealous of my fellow Pixel 7 Pro owners. The idea of having a foldable Google feature is an attractive one.
“So what’s the problem?” you might ask.
In fact, when you take a full look at the Pixel Fold’s production process, hardware, and price, I’d argue there’s cause for concern. And I’m starting to wonder if we should hope to delay another Pixel Fold, to be 100% sure it’s ready to go.
What we “know” about the Pixel Fold
You can read our full Pixel Fold rumor guide for more in-depth details of each leak. But keep going here and I’ll break down the key (unconfirmed) details you should know:
- The Pixel Fold will launch either this spring around Google I/O 2023 or this fall alongside the Pixel 8.
- Depending on the release date, he’ll be using either last year’s Tensor G2 or this fall’s Tensor G3.
- Old rumors indicated a price of $1,400, but the latest leak has it at $1,800, which is the same price as the Galaxy Z Fold 4.
- It will feature a 50MP, 12MP, and 10MP telephoto lenses, which are in Google’s trademark camera bar, as well as an “ultra-micro” 8MP selfie camera.
- Its 7.6-inch screen will have a resolution of 1840 x 2208 and a (most likely) 120Hz refresh rate, as well as noticeable top and bottom bezels.
- While the screen will be made by Samsung, it will be wider and more square than the Z Fold 4 – closer in size to the OPPO Find N – and even weigh more than the 263g Fold 4.
All of this could change if Google decides not to release the Pixel Fold this year. It may not be communicate It’s the Pixel Fold; Pixel Notepad is another name we’ve heard. But we’ll work on the assumption that Google really plans to release it this year in its current leaked form.
Samsung may let down Google
Earlier this month, complaints surrounding the 2021 Galaxy Z Fold 3 phone came to a head. These digital trends (Opens in a new tab) piece sums up a lot, a lot Instances of the famous foldable phone screen breaking long before its 200,000 fold estimate. Cracks and dark spots appear along the crease, slowly expanding until the phone needs an expensive repair to continue working.
Samsung has reinforced the glass on the Z Fold 4, and we have absolutely no evidence that the Pixel Fold’s display will suffer from any manufacturer defects. But the Z Fold 3 took less than two years before it showed its metaphorical (and literal) cracks. Folding fans might hesitate to buy another Samsung-made wrinkled screen as a result.
Samsung will allegedly make the Z Fold 5 wrinkle-free with a waterdrop hinge — and has developed a screen that folds in and out — while the Pixel Fold’s internally foldable display shows a wrinkle in the leaks we’ve seen.
Google itself doesn’t have the best production track record. A Pixel 6 Pro reviewer noted “slight gaps where the back glass meets the camera strip” and “slightly raised edges” between the camera strip and the metal edges. Recently, the volume rocker fell off a lot of Pixel 7 Pro units, including a couple of AC team members.
Add 9to5Google’s (Opens in a new tab) The latest rumor is that the Pixel Fold will weigh more than the Z Fold 4 packing in a larger battery, and it’s fair to view the Pixel Fold’s design as a potential weakness for its success.
Motor may let us down
Then you have the Google Tensor G2, the chip produced by Samsung LSI. When the Pixel 7 Pro launched last year, we noticed that it didn’t offer much of a performance gain over the 6 Pro. This wasn’t entirely important, because Amnesty International We’ve given a boost to its cameras with new features like Photo Unblur, and it still performs admirably for everyday tasks. Compared to the overheating Snapdragon 8 Gen 1, it wasn’t a bad alternative at all.
Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 I changed the conversation. It’s significantly faster for both everyday tasks and gaming than any Android chip that’s come before it, giving phones like the Galaxy S23 and S23 Ultra a really big boost in benchmarking.
Comparing Future Labs’ benchmarks of the S23 Ultra and Pixel 7 Pro, the former crushes the latter with the same amount of RAM:
|standard||Google Pixel 7 Pro||Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra|
|Geekbench 5 is single-core||1060||1578|
|Geekbench 5 is multi-core||3046||5081|
|3DMark Wild Life Original Unlimited||6725||14611|
|3DMark Wild Life Extreme Unlimited||1805||3788|
For the Pixel 7 Pro vs. the S23 Ultra, this seems like a fair fight because the Pixel 7 Pro costs $300 less and has some perks like better action photography and faster updates to give it credibility. And her performance is definitely not bad.
The problem is that the Pixel Fold will cost either $1,400 or $1,800, if rumors are to be believed. And at this price, anything less than top-end performance will turn away hard-core Android users willing to spend a lot. It takes away Google’s typical affordable feature because the foldable components are so expensive.
If the Pixel Fold arrives this spring alongside the Pixel 7a, it’s almost 100% guaranteed to use Tensor G2, with all the drawbacks that that may entail. If Google delays it until the fall, it will use the Tensor G3, which WinFuture claims is based on Samsung’s Exynos 2300 in-house processor. This leak only refers to two Pixel phones, which are likely to be the Pixel 8 and 8 Pro.
With Samsung ditching Exynos for its Galaxy phones, Google’s reliance on an Exynos-spinoff design for its Tensor G3 looks even riskier. It shouldn’t be too much of a concern for the affordable Pixel 8, but the Pixel Fold and even the 8 Pro could lag behind 2023 Android flagships, which is enough for consumers to notice.
There is no doubt that the Pixel Fold will have an amazing ability of artificial intelligence. But people don’t usually buy foldables for cameras and intangibles. And the fact that the Pixel Fold allegedly expands to fit a large battery tells us that it likely won’t be as efficient as this year’s Galaxy Z Fold 5, which will use the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 or Gen 2+.
Has Google lost its window, or should it wait longer?
Google has spent years delaying the Pixel clock, waiting for the right moment. It ultimately proves to be an excellent wearable with a sleek design that we love; But it also had to stick with an older Exynos chipset to maintain that design, and then pack extra RAM to compensate.
With the Pixel Fold, it’s not easy to get around problems that it An older design, as Samsung and other brands continue to iterate on the search for the perfect foldable shape.
If Google pushes back the Pixel Fold’s release date to get a faster Tensor G3 chip, that could make the design look even more delayed; But if it swooped in before the Z Fold 5, Android fans might balk at the price-performance ratio.
Essentially, by pushing back its original planned 2021 and 2022 release date, Google found itself on the hook with the Pixel Fold. I’m not sure if more delay or acceleration is the answer, but it all depends on whether Tensor G3 can bridge the gap – or whether Android users buy the Fold with a Tensor G2 chip.