Will the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL have a notched display, as is the growing trend among Android devices, or will it skip the notch and use a more traditional bezel design at the top? The answer to that question might simply be ‘Yes!’, though that requires further explanation. Here it is—among a series of leaks and rumors, the most recent one suggests the Pixel 3 will have a regular bezel along the top, and the Pixel 3 XL will adopt a notched design.
While the notched designed is relatively new, adopting it for one model and not another isn’t unprecedented. Apple did the same thing when it launched its iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone X models, the latter of which popularized the notch (the concept of which traces back to Andy Rubin’s Essential Phone). Granted, it would be a little different with the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL since they’ll presumably have more in common with one another than the iPhone X and iPhone 8 series, but it’s still a similar tactic.
In any event, here are the images, which were originally posted to Weibo and then removed, though not before SlashLeaks found them:
Image Source: Weibo via SlashLeaks
We’re taking the above image with a grain of salt, as we do all leaks, though it’s easy to imagine Google running with a dual design approach. If nothing else, the timing of this particular leak is interesting. Over the weekend, illustrations plucked from the beta release of Android P started to spread because they showed what many presumed to be the Pixel 3. Found by navigating to Settings > Sounds > Shortcut to Prevent Ringing, the illustrations showed no signs of a notch, leading many to believe that the Pixel 3 will arrive without one.
The illustrations also left out a traditional bezel. That could mean one of three things—that Google found a way to embed the front camera(s) underneath the display, the Pixel 3 will not have a front camera, or the front camera will pop out from one of the sides.
There’s not a fourth explanation. In light of the leaked image above, which shows both a notch and a traditional bezel, Google may have decided to simply not represent the top bezel design so that its illustrations represent both devices.
We’ll just have to wait and see. Outside of the display, the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL are expected to be the first smartphones to ship out of the box with Android P, which will have even deeper hooks with the Google Assistant. The phones will also likely arrive with Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 845 processor, as the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL landed last year with a Snapdragon 835 chip.