The Google Pixel Fold has had an on-again, off-again presence in the smartphone rumor mill, with the current consensus being that the long-rumored foldable phone from Google is very much on again. In fact, a pretty well-connected source just dropped some interesting tidbits about the displays likely to be included in the Pixel Fold.
It sounds like Google's stab at a foldable will draw on two very different devices for inspiration. The Pixel Fold's interior folding display is rumored to be the same size as what Samsung's using for its Galaxy Z Fold device. But the cover display will reportedly have more in common with the one on the Oppo Find N.
That's the word from Ross Young, CEO of Display Supply Chain Consultants, who has a pretty good reputation when it comes to rumors about screen sizes and panel suppliers. Taking to Twitter in a tweet that promotes an upcoming DSSC conference, Young claims that the "Z Fold 4 and Google foldable will have similar sized foldable displays."
Z Fold 4 and Google foldable will have similar sized foldable displays, but the Google cover display will be quite a bit smaller at 5.8". This should mean it will have a wider aspect ratio than the Samsung 6.19" Fold 4. Hear more at our conference next week.May 2, 2022
That would put the Pixel Fold in line to have a 7.6-inch display when the phone is unfolded. At least, that's what the Galaxy Z Fold 3 features, and Samsung is rumored to be keeping that screen size for the Galaxy Z Fold 4 that's likely to arrive in the second half of 2022. For what it's worth, previous Pixel Fold rumors have hinted at a 7.6-inch main display on Google's phone.
The Galaxy Z Fold 3 also features a 6.2-inch cover display for users to access without having to open up the phone. Don't expect the Pixel Fold to follow suit, though, as Young forecasts that the Google foldable's cover panel is going to be "quite a bit smaller at 5.8 [inches]."
"This should mean it will have a wider aspect ratio than the Samsung 6.19[-inch] Fold 4," Young added.
That would also mean the Pixel Fold's exterior display would be about the same size as the 5.9-inch cover panel that adorns the Oppo Find N. That would be all right by us — Oppo's foldable phone features a very impressive design for a device that, in many ways, challenges the Galaxy Z Fold 3's claim as the best foldable phone. The biggest knock on the Oppo Find N is that it's not available outside of Oppo's home market of China.
The Pixel Fold figures to have wider availability when it does appear. In a follow-up tweet, Young said the Google foldable would ship in the last three months of 2022. A timeframe like that would likely mean the Pixel Fold would be introduced at the same fall launch event where Google shows off the Pixel 7.
Then again, we heard rumors building up to last fall's Pixel 6 release that a foldable phone from Google might be in the cards, and that launch didn't happen. Still, with Android 12.1 modifying Google's software for tablets and big screen phones, it's clear that Google has some interest in foldable devices. It's worth keeping an ear to the ground for additional Pixel Fold rumors to see how serious Google might be.
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Philip Michaels is a Managing Editor at Tom's Guide. He's been covering personal technology since 1999 and was in the building when Steve Jobs showed off the iPhone for the first time. He's been evaluating smartphones since that first iPhone debuted in 2007, and he's been following phone carriers and smartphone plans since 2015. He has strong opinions about Apple, the Oakland Athletics, old movies and proper butchery techniques. Follow him at @PhilipMichaels.