LG has refuted rumors that it will be Google’s partner for the third iteration of the Pixel premium phone lineup. A recent report from Korean news site Chosun Biz presented the possibility, but LG reacted to the story in a timely manner, with its global communications director, Ken Hong, dismissing the whole affair as mere speculation. According to previous rumors, Google is seeking a partner for the Pixel 3 smartphones who can guarantee more stability and scalability in manufacturing than HTC did with the first-generation Pixels, and industry insiders and analysts seemed convinced that LG would be a good possible pick because of the company’s history manufacturing Nexus devices for Google. Despite their previous collaborations that resulted in the Nexus 4, Nexus 5, and the Nexus 5X, it seems that even if LG is going to be manufacturing the Google Pixel 3 phones, no official details on the matter will be revealed anytime soon.
Talk of the Pixel 2 hasn’t been entirely skipped over, of course. New devices in the AOSP codebases, known as Muskie and Walleye, point to the Pixel 2 family sporting Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor. Speculation has run fairly wild, but thus far, not a single OEM implied that it will be manufacturing Google’s upcoming Android flagships. An order for curved OLED screens placed with LG Display by Google kickstarted rumors that the new phone would feature those displays, or perhaps even be manufactured by LG, but nothing in that vein has been confirmed either. Google’s hardware chief, former Moto exec Rick Osterloh, did officially announce that the company will release a second-generation Pixel lineup but was extremely nonspecific about that revelation.
While LG has refuted early rumors about being Google’s new hardware partner, that doesn’t rule it out entirely. LG Display has recently shown it’s capable of designing and manufacturing high-quality OLED displays, and LG’s new G6 has mostly been touted as a nicely designed, powerful, and screen-centric device which shows that LG can design and manufacture great hardware. The company’s track record with the Nexus lineup goes all the way back to 2012, and it has only been left out of Google’s in-house smartphone efforts twice since. LG’s Nexus 4 and Nexus 5 stood alone, while the Nexus 5X debuted alongside Huawei’s Nexus 6P. The only two product generations that the company didn’t help produce since it started making Google’s phones are those that include the Motorola Nexus 6, and HTC’s Pixel lineup.