In short: One Target store in the U.S. started selling a first-party protective case for Google’s Pixel 3 flagship prematurely, with the device itself still being a day away from being officially announced. The image that can be seen below emerged online earlier today and shows a cloth case that’s apparently meant to match the Sand variant of the smaller Pixel 3, whereas future owners of the larger Pixel 3 XL will likely be able to buy an identical accessory for their Android smartphone of choice.
Background: Google is no stranger to using fabric for protective cases, having unveiled a handful of such products for last year’s Pixel 2 lineup. The color of the newly spotted accessory is still new and adds more credence to the possibility that the two flagships will be offered with a Sand finish. Last week, AndroidHeadlines exclusively shared the first clear look at the Sand, in addition to confirming the new handsets will also be available in black and white. It’s presently unclear whether more colors will be part of the range as well; Google recently teased something along the lines of a mint or teal finish but some industry insiders expressed skepticism about that color really being in the works for the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL.
Impact: Google’s smartphone accessory strategy doesn’t appear to be changing this year and the Pixel 3 line will seemingly be accompanied by a number of minimally revised protective cases, with recent rumors also pointing toward second-generation Pixel Buds being in the works as well. One notable novelty should debut in the form of the Pixel Stand, a wireless charger which may also be capable of turning the new smartphones into Google Home speakers of sorts while they’re docked. Alphabet’s subsidiary is scheduled to disclose all Pixel 3 details at tomorrow’s launch event in Paris, France.