Pixel 4 Spotted in the Wild, Again!

Today, I saw a prototype of the Pixel 4, on an airplane. One of Google’s employees was taking the phone for a test drive, two seats away from me. What did it tell me? A lot.

Design

The Pixel 4’s design has been leaked throroughly, so there were few surprises there. The phone that I saw had a white back, with a metal frame, and a black square camera setup, like has already been confirmed. However it is possible that the white rear was a skin on the phone. Personally though, I think this white and black look could be a good look, similar to the “Panda” Pixel 2XL. The phone also had an orange coloured power button, on the right side of the device, just above the volume rocker.

On the front, though, was much more interesting. The thing that drew my eye in the first place was the chin, or lack thereof. The bottom bezel of the phone was – to the best of my perception, anyway – as thick as the side bezels. At the top, a single front camera housed in a forehead that was slimmer than the Pixel 3’s, but only by a few millimeters. The earpiece was smaller than that of the Pixel 3’s too, which could impact call quality.

Personally, I like this design. It adds a lot of features into the forehead, so I think that it is worth it, but it still shaves down the bezels as much as possible.

A quick photo I managed to get of the Pixel 4

Project Soli

One of the biggest features of the Pixel 4 is its integration with Project Soli, which will theoretically allow for interaction with your phone by performing hand gestures above the array of sensors in the phone’s forehead. In simple terms, it allows you to wave your hand and your phone skips song, or turns the volume up, or down, or does whatever it is that you want it to do.

Those sensors will also allow for face unlock on the Pixel 4, as there is no fingerprint scanner to be seen, which I witnessed firsthand. Maybe it was the excitement of seeing a prototype out in the real world, but to me, it really seemed like magic. Positioned flat on the man’s lap, he pressed the power button, and it unlocked. I would say that it was about as fast as the Huawei Mate 20 Pro’s face unlock, which is amazing this early on in the process, and especially at that 60 degree angle. Unfortunately, after briefly speaking to the man, I learned that most of Project Soli’s capabilities were locked on this prototype, so I didn’t get to see any other applications of the technology. 

Camera

As I mentioned, on the front of the device, there was only a single camera, meaning that Google has dropped the secondary wide-angle selfie shooter. This doesn’t really bother me too much, as I’m not much of a selfie-taker, but it might bother avid selfie-takers. On the rear of the device, the cameras were arranged in a squircle-like shape, but I didn’t get a good look at the number of cameras, or what their purposes, so not really anything to report there

However, I did spot the camera app. It appeared to have a complete redesign. I can’t recall specifics, but I do remember the menu at the top was greatly trimmed down, having only 1 button at the top.

Other Leaks

Other leaks about the Pixel 4 say that the phone will come with a telephoto camera on the back, which is an odd choice considering Google’s foray into improved zoom with “Super Res Zoom” on the Pixel 3. I was banking on the phone having a wide-angle shooter, but that seems unlikely now.

Furthermore, some sources say that the Pixel 4 will have a 90Hz screen to compete with the likes of Oneplus and Asus. It seems that refresh rate is a big factor in flagship phones today, so if this leak is true, it could give Google the edge it needs to beat the competition.

No matter the specifics, one thing is sure. The Pixel 4 will have the best camera on a phone when it launches. The Pixel 3 is widely accepted to be the best camera on any phone, as it seems that the phrase “Of course, it’s no Pixel 3” seems quite popular when reviewing a phone’s camera, so we can only imagine what the Pixel 4 will bring to the table. So what do you think? Will you be preordering the Pixel 4, or will you hold off to see how Project Soli is implemented? Let me know in the comments below.

50 Replies to “Pixel 4 Spotted in the Wild, Again!”

  1. Pingback: Alleged Google Pixel 4 photos show big top bezel but almost no chin | Tech Mirror
  2. I’m super excited to see this thing get unveiled.

    Soli is something I’m not excited about yet…. But I’m very excited to see what it can to. Hopefully it’s more than changing songs or answering phone calls.

    1. They wouldn’t spend nearly 5 years developing a completely new sensor just so that it can change songs and adjust the volume. It may launch with those initial features but I’m sure it’ll expand into full UI navigation (swiping, zooming, etc)

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  4. Pingback: Sketchy Pixel 4 shots show off thin bezels all-around | Tech Mirror
  5. I’ve done most of the Nexus phones and all of the Pixels. But I now have a Note 10+ preordered to at least take it for a test drive. (I can use it two weeks, call in for a RMA number, and then use it two more weeks before I return it, according to a Samsung Rep. Samsung charged me $500 for the flagship Note… allowing $600 for my Pixel 3XL which I payed $695 for new last Black Friday. They are also allowing me $200 in Samsung credit making the amazingly designed new Note 10+ price equivalent to $300!!!)
    So I couldn’t resist giving it a try. I’m not into foreheads, face unlock, and Soli. It seems that with the wide field selfie camera (already debunked), face unlock and Project Soli, Google is clamoring for wider identity in the flagship world…but it hasn’t found it yet.

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