Outside of the annual launch of Apple and Samsung's leading phones, it's the yearly refresh of Google's Android-leading Pixel line which generates the most interest among smartphone fans.
Since the company put its Nexus range to bed a few years back, the Pixel series has been Android's 'reference point' when it comes to hardware and software; Google uses these phones to illustrate the best new features of its mobile OS, as well as the perfect hardware elements to go along with it.
This year, the company will be lifting the lid on its latest Pixel devices at The Made by Google Event on October 9th, but as is so often the case, we've seen numerous leaks over the past month which have given us a pretty solid idea of what to expect.
Now, serial leaker Evan Blass has blown the doors off completely with a clear picture of what these two new phones look like.
Google Pixel 3 Design LEAKS
The biggest shock is that the smaller Pixel 3 has bezels at both the top and bottom of the screen, and while they're certainly thinner than the ones on the Pixel 2, they're still quite noticeable – and given that pretty much every flagship Android phone in 2018 is being sold on the 'big screen' dream, it's a real shame that Google couldn't have found a way to make these slimmer.
Large bezels don't ruin a phone of course, but when every single device out there is being compared to the iPhone X, bezels of any description are going to make your handset look like it's old news.
With the Pixel 3 XL, the much-rumored 'notch' is present and correct; amusingly, it has what looks like a face on it thanks to the arrangement of the sensor, camera and earpiece.
Sadly, despite the notch, there's still a hefty chin at the bottom of the phone.
These aren't the only leaks we've had lately; Nieuwe Mobile posted images of the two phones sitting inside official cases; these appear to be made of fabric, very much like previous ones released for the Pixel line.
As for the finer details, those will no doubt have to wait until the 9th.
At the moment, it's fair to expect the two phones will be running Snapdragon 845 chipsets and will boast AMOLED screens. As for any other hardware quirks, we'll no doubt find out about those when the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL are officially announced.
For now, what we appear to have are two devices which – on the surface at least – look a lot like their 2017 forerunners.
Given Apple's bold move to phones which are dominated by their screens, we can't help but feel a little underwhelmed.
Where’s The Design?
I do like Google’s Pixel phones. They do A LOT of things right. Most notably the camera tech, which is fantastic… but it’s been three years now and the design aspect appears, once again, to be the weakest link.
I know everyone’s following Apple down the notch route, and this is fine, but a company of Google’s caliber and resources should be able to do something a little more exciting with the physical design of its phones, surely?
Unless it’s going for a stripped-back, utilitarian approach, I guess?
But why would it? The biggest critique of the Pixels phones to-date has been their design; people find them boring and pedestrian. And the Pixel 3 – if these leaks are legit – appear to be just more of the same.