Forget Google Pixel 8 — Pixel 9 could bring this huge upgrade

Google Pixel 8 Pro hands-on.
(Image credit: Future)

Now the Google Pixel 8 series is here, the smartphone leaker community has moved on to hunt for details on next year's model, the presumed Pixel 9. And a juicy piece of info popped up earlier this month from the reliable tipster Ross Young.

Young, an expert in smartphone display tech, claimed at the start of October that the Pixel 9 series will offer larger displays than the Pixel 8 models do. Unfortunately, further details are locked behind a paywall, but he says he may reveal more details in the near future.

Let's consider what kind of size differences we could end up seeing on future Pixels, starting with the Pixel 9. At 6.2 inches, the Pixel 8 is already smaller than the 6.3-inch Pixel 7, which was itself smaller than the 6.4-inch Pixel 6. So making the Pixel 9 larger again would be a reversal of Google's direction over the past couple of years. 

It feels like Google could easily move back to a 6.4-inch body for the Pixel 9, since it's already offered this size before. It could even go a little larger again, and try to tempt users away from other larger flagship phones like the 6.7-inch iPhone 15 Plus or 6.6-inch Galaxy S23 Plus, rather than scrap with the 6.1-inch iPhone 15 or Galaxy S23.

The 6.7-inch Pixel 8 Pro is a typical size for a flagship smartphone, so anything much larger and the Pixel could be too large for current tastes in smartphone size. If we had to place a bet, we'd imagine Google would nudge the size up to 6.8 inches, the same size as the Galaxy S23 Ultra. However, with the iPhone 16 Ultra tipped to measure 6.9 inches, maybe Google would want to target that size instead.

Budget and foldable Pixels set to grow too

Young explains in his tweet that this size increase will apply to future Pixel a-series and Pixel Fold models too. Young mentions the Pixel 9a by name, which will presumably be Google's 2025 mid-priced phone, meaning there's a Pixel 8a model unaccounted for. Either way, the current model, the Pixel 7a, measures 6.1 inches, meaning there's plenty of scope for growth.

The Pixel Fold has two displays - a 5.8-inch outer one and a 7.6-inch inner one. This is a little smaller than other foldable phones like the Galaxy Z Fold 5, which gives Google scope to expand things for the next foldable Pixel. However, if that means increasing the overall body size of the Pixel Fold, we'd rather Google not make this change. The Pixel Fold's more compact frame makes it much more comfortable to use than the Z Fold 5 both open and closed.

All of these phones are several months, if not years, down the line though, so best not to worry about them now if you're looking to replace your phone sooner rather than later. If you are curious about Google's new phones, take a look at our Pixel 8 hands-on and Pixel 8 Pro hands-on stories for our initial thoughts on the two new Pixels.

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Richard Priday
Assistant Phones Editor

Richard is based in London, covering news, reviews and how-tos for phones, tablets, gaming, and whatever else people need advice on. Following on from his MA in Magazine Journalism at the University of Sheffield, he's also written for WIRED U.K., The Register and Creative Bloq. When not at work, he's likely thinking about how to brew the perfect cup of specialty coffee.