Pixel Fold is a real phone! Google was talking about building a Since 2019Specific models have been rumored since 2021. The numerous delays and cancellations were enough to make anyone cautious about the long-rumored device, but now there’s a growing slate of rumors claiming we’ll see an announcement at Google I/O in May.
But over the weekend, for the first time, real-life images of the Pixel Fold appeared online. Android researcher Kuba Wojciechowski Post a quick video to Twitter of opening and closing the Pixel fold. It’s not much, but it’s the first confirmation we’ve seen that this is an actual piece of hardware that exists outside of a computer screen.
– Kuba Wojciechowski: 3 (Za_Raczke) April 22, 2023
As usual, previous renderings from OnLeaks seem pretty accurate; We can see the front of the device, the slightest hint of the camera bar on the back and inside the screen. Just like in the renders, the inside of the phone has noticeably larger bezels than the normal design you’d get from Samsung or Oppo. The inner screen doesn’t have a hole in the display for the camera, instead opting for an old-school design to shrink the screen to make room for a camera above the screen and then extend that dead space across the top of the phone. Did Google shrink the entire screen across this foldable behemoth just to put the camera in the top-right corner? It’s an odd step back when pinhole offerings are the default.
While the bezels on a regular glass phone don’t get much use, the bezels on a foldable phone are there for a reason. Displays are usually firmly attached to a smartphone’s glass, which is affixed to the phone’s frame, but foldable devices need to folds, and the screen should shift subtly when opened and closed. This means that a ‘fully glued’ construction will not work, so folding screens are usually only partially glued and left free to move around the hinge area. The foldable bezel is a raised plastic edge that goes around the perimeter of the screen, keeping the floating portions of the screen gently attached to the body of the phone and preventing debris from getting under the screen and damaging it. Lifting also stops the two halves of the screen from grinding together when the phone is closed. So while the Fold needs a frame, no foldable, not even the Galaxy Fold 1, has ever felt the need for something this wide.
Previous reports said the device should be around $1,700, and CNBC Reporting that this will have the “most durable hinge on a folding hinge” has to do with the thicker plastic edge. Hopefully, Google will do some explaining at I/O.
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