Google Pixel 7 Ultra — all the rumors so far

Google Pixel 7 Pro cameras
(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

We may get a Google Pixel 7 Ultra soon as a surprise addition to the Google Pixel 7 series. After the regular and the Pixel 7 Pro arrived in October, we thought we'd seen the end of the Pixel announcements until next year, but now it seems there could be a new even more powerful version on the way.

Rumors remain sparse for now, but the current shape of things is that Google's alleged ultra phone will improve on the Pixel 7 Pro's camera at least, as well as a couple of internal components. It may also either keep the same screen or downgrade it, but the jury's still out on that.

It's not clear if or when Google would reveal a Pixel 7 Ultra model, but if it's coming, here's what's been tipped so far.

Google Pixel 7 Ultra release date speculation and price

To start with, does the Pixel 7 Ultra actually exist? According to Android Open Source Project code, there does seem to be a third Pixel 7 model alongside the Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro. Based on other specs tipped for this phone, it definitely seems to slot in above the Pro as a new top-tier phone option for Google.

But now that Google's typical October Pixel launch date has already been and gone, we're kind of stumped as to when Google would reveal an Ultra model. In a given year, Google's two biggest events are Made by Google in October, and Google I/O in May. I/O is usually more software-focused, but Google has announced products there plenty of times, including the Google Pixel 6a

Perhaps it'll be in May then that Google decides to spark up new interest in the Pixel 7 after over six months on sale by introducing an Ultra model, alongside a budget Pixel 7a model. Equally, Google could always hold a completely separate event to give a new ultra Pixel room to breathe.

Since we hear Google's also planning to launch a Pixel Fold foldable phone next year, and the company's already confirmed that its Pixel Tablet will launch at some point next year, perhaps we'll see another hardware-heavy event around Spring where the Pixel 7 Ultra could make its entrance. 

Google Pixel 7 Ultra design and display 

We haven't a clue yet of how the Pixel 7 Ultra would look, beyond assuming it'll share the key characteristics of the Pixel 7 family. Those would be a centered punch-hole camera on the display and a horizontal metal camera bar on the back to house its rear sensors. The back panel would likely be offered in a small variety of colors, but making the back from textured glass could be particularly welcome, since the Pixel 7 Pro's back is too smooth for its own good.

Google Pixel 7 Pro back view

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

There are conflicting rumors about the display quality on the Pixel 7 Ultra. One source claims it'll have an FHD resolution, which would be ridiculous for a supposedly ultra-grade phone. Meanwhile, a different source claims the screen could be 1440p (QHD) like the Pixel 7 Pro and Pixel 6 Pro before it, which makes more sense.

What both sources agree is that the Pixel Ultra screen would have a 120Hz display, the benchmark refresh rate for premium Android devices right now. There's no mention of whether the display is flat or curved, but we'd assume there to be curved edges if it follows the Pixel 7 Pro's example.

The display would likely house the regular and Pro Pixel 7's improved fingerprint sensor for security, although Google would presumably bring its Face Unlock option, too. Face Unlock isn't fully secure, unlike Face ID on iPhones, but it does add some extra convenience while ensuring important stuff like payments are protected by the more secure fingerprint scanner. 

Google Pixel 7 Ultra cameras 

Google already has a strong camera setup on the Pixel 7 Pro, but an Ultra model would likely require an even better array of sensors to be taken seriously. The rumors so far suggest Google will be making at least one change, but they disagree on exactly how.

One rumor (from leaker Ice Universe) claims Google will swap out the 50MP main camera for a new 1-inch sensor, a huge sensor size for a smartphone only seen on devices like the Xiaomi 12S Ultra. The other rumor says the new camera will instead be a Sony IMX712, a currently unreleased camera sensor of unknown size and resolution.

Google Pixel 7 Pro back view

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

With Samsung's Galaxy S22 Ultra offering a 108MP camera — and the upcoming Galaxy S23 Ultra tipped for a 200MP camera — Google could do something special to demonstrate its ultra photography chops. Upgrades to the Pixel 7 Pro's 12MP ultrawide camera, 48MP 5x telephoto camera or 10.8MP front camera could also help differentiate the Ultra model from the Pro.

 Google Pixel 7 Ultra specs 

Other than its display or cameras, there are other areas we hope a Pixel 7 Ultra could improve. too, although rumors on this right now are quite limited.

We'd expect Google to use its Tensor G2 chipset to power the Pixel 7 Ultra, if not something more advanced. That could be a theoretical Tensor G3 chipset or an enhanced version of the G2, perhaps with more RAM or additional CPU/GPU/NPU cores. However Google decides to go about it, enhanced performance is a must-have for the Pixel 7 Ultra, since the Pixel 7 Pro's benchmark scores are not too strong compared to other Android phones or iPhones.

A larger battery would be good, too, or greater efficiency in other parts of the phone, because battery life is one of the Pixel 7 series' biggest weaknesses, even though the Pixel 7 Pro has a 5,000 mAh battery like many of the handsets on our best phone battery life list.

The only rumor we've had about the Pixel 7 Ultra's internals so far is that it may use a new Wi-Fi/Bluetooth chip that could allow for upgraded Bluetooth 5.3 rather than the Pixel 7's Bluetooth 5.2, as well as more stable and speedy Wi-Fi data. 

Google Pixel 7 Ultra outlook

There's definitely room for a Google Pixel 7 Ultra in Google's phone lineup, but there are still lots of questions to be answered before we're certain about what kind of phone we're dealing with, if indeed it's coming at all.

With the suspected Pixel 7 Ultra device tipped for some sort of major camera upgrade, chances are it'll be able to compete with the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra and the iPhone 14 Pro Max, if not the Galaxy S23 Ultra and iPhone 15 Ultra tipped for next year, at least on photography. Google could do with improving its battery and processing power tech if it really wants to take on Samsung and Apple.

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.