Last year, Essential introduced the world to the first smartphone with a notch. Soon after, Apple welcomed the iPhone X, which has a decidedly larger notch on the top of the screen. Since then we have seen a flood of new smartphones that incorporate the notch design. At this point, I think it’s safe to say that Essential and Apple both had their reasons, and now the rest appear to just be copying a bold decision from both of those companies.
As a result, we get to live with the notch for the foreseeable future.
Which is fine for some people. At least on some Android phones you can tweak the software to actually hide the notch (kind of). Of course, there are still some companies out there, like Samsung, who refuse to jump on the notch bandwagon. Who knows if that will change at some point in the future, but for now Samsung appears to be holding fast.
And then there’s Google. Earlier this year we heard that the Android team had made changes to officially support devices with notch designs, which, at the time, only seemed to give a bit of assistance to smartphone manufacturers who were obviously going to be adopting the choice for their own devices. But it was more than likely always more about building in support for the company’s own future smartphone.
And sure enough the rumor mill has been pumping out reports that at least one of the new Pixel smartphones that will be announced later this year will be adopting the notch design. The Pixel 3 XL will reportedly reduce the bezels even more than what we saw with the Pixel 2 XL, and the top will have a “taller” notch than what’s present in the iPhone X.
Not too long ago a friend of mine told me that if Google adopts the notch, they’ll probably switch to Samsung for their upgrade later this year. They are not a fan of the notch design at all and I don’t blame them. I’ve had to force myself to get used to it, and, even all these months later, I still kind of hate it.
But where do you stand with the design decision? If Google does indeed adopt the notch design for the upcoming flagship Pixel 3 XL, will you pick one up? Or is that a move that will make you jump ship from the Pixel smartphone lineup? Let me know!