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Latest Pixel 2 Leak Shows Google's Stuck in the Past

To be with a standard bezel or not to be — that's apparently the question facing the next version of the Pixel after a prominent leaker displayed new images that are reportedly of Google's next phone.

A popular assumption about this fall's Pixel 2 was that at least one version of the updated phone would go the route of the Galaxy S8 and LG G6 by reducing top and bottom bezels to add more screen real estate. Several leaked renders claiming to show off the successor to the Pixel XL have depicted a phone with an elongated screen.

Leaked Pixel 2 renders (Credit:Evan Blass/VentureBeat)

Leaked Pixel 2 renders (Credit:Evan Blass/VentureBeat)

But in the case of the smaller Pixel, expect the same old same old, according to Evan Blass in a report posted to VentureBeat. He says that the smaller of Google's two phones will retain the usual front and bottom bezels. And he tweeted out a photo allegedly of the next Pixel to prove it.

If you're holding out hold for at least one bezel-free Pixel, note that Blass says the phone in that image is the smaller of Google's upcoming devices, code-named Walleye. Some reports have suggested that Google might try to differentiate its two Pixel models, with the smaller Pixel looking like the current version while the Pixel XL2 features a more expansive screen and squeezable sides for controlling the Google Assistant.

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Blass's report notes that HTC is building the Walleye version of the Pixel on Google's behalf while LG will handle work on the larger Pixel. So there's some room to believe that the Pixel 2 and Pixel XL2 will have a different look and feel to them.

The next Pixels will reportedly spurn another feature that more flagship phones are adopting, according to Blass: they won't feature dual-rear cameras. That squares with other rumors about the next Pixel, though it flies in the face of what leading smartphone makers are doing with their top-of-the-line devices.

Both LG and Apple introduced dual cameras with their flagships last year, and and OnePlus followed suit with the OnePlus 5 in 2017. The Galaxy Note 8, expected to debut this month, is likely to have dual rear cameras, too, so a Pixel 2 with a single rear camera will certainly stand out from the crowd, though probably not in the way Google would like.

The bad news comes in threes with Blass's report, which also says the new Pixels will drop the 3.5mm headphone jack. That matches an earlier leak from today (Auig. 4) that claimed the headphone jack was a goner on this year's Pixels.

Philip Michaels
Philip Michaels is a senior editor at Tom's Guide. He has strong opinions about Apple, the Oakland Athletics and old movies. Follow him at @PhilipMichaels.