Google is gearing up to unveil the latest evolution of its Pixel smartphone.
It’s coming hot off the heels of Apple’s big September event, where it unveiled the iPhone 8 and the iPhone X.
Last year when Google first announced it was getting into the smartphone market, analysts predicted it was Samsung that should be worried.
But the Pixel didn’t knock Samsung’s Galaxy phones off the Android throne, with the S8 already selling more than 20 million units (the original Pixel has reportedly sold about 1 million).
Will Google’s Pixel 2 be enough to take the Android crown from Samsung and then rise above the iPhone 8 that has reportedly struggled out of the gate?
Here’s what we can expect to see.
1. There’ll be two phones … and you’ll be able to hug them
It’s pretty rare now that we don’t get a smartphone release without a standard size and a JUMBOTRON version…and it’s the same with the new Pixel.
We’re reportedly getting a Pixel 2 and a Pixel 2 XL, with a 5-inch 1080p and 6-inch QHD screen respectively.
Both phones will reportedly have an “Active Edge”, which will allow you to activate certain functions of the phone by squeezing the edge, according to 9to5Google.
2. The headphone jack is gone
Google mocked Apple last year when it announced the Pixel, billing its headphone jack as “satisfyingly not new”.
All signs point to the Pixel 2 not having the standard headphone jack.
Android users are about to be introduced to the wonderful world of dongles.
3. It’ll look pretty similar to the Pixel
Images of the new model that Droid Life managed to get its hands on show a slightly refined design, but with no changes to the distinctive fingerprint scanner and single camera lens on the back.
Venturebeat’s Evan Blass (who’s got a track record of getting these kind of things right) has also tweeted similar pictures:
4. It’ll be water resistant and have front facing speakers
The eagle-eyed among you will have noticed two speakers on the front of the device.
They’re apparently the reason the headphone jack has disappeared.
Both phones will reportedly have a much better water resistance than the original Pixel and will survive a swim in 1.5 metres of water for up to 30 minutes.
5. They’ll cost about the same as the iPhone 8
The Pixel 2 will cost $US649 ($826) for the 64GB model or $US749 ($953) for the 128GB version, according to Droid Life.
The Pixel 2 XL will cost $US849 ($1,080) for the 64GB or $US949 ($1,208) for the 128GB.
That’s about the same as Apple’s iPhone 8.
It’s a long way short of the iPhone X. It will cost between $1,579-$1,829 in Australia.
Will it be enough topple the iPhone?
Google hasn’t been shy about taking pot shots at Apple when announcing its new hardware.
It aired this teaser two weeks ago, showing some of the most common complaints people have with their smartphone:
If rumours about it’s late October release are correct, it’ll be competing against the flashy, but incredibly expensive, iPhone X.
If Google can fix the problems it raises in the teaser, it’ll go a long way towards becoming the king of the smartphone market.
We’ll find out more when the official presentation begins at 3am AEDT Thursday.
Tim Hornibrook balances his career with nonprofit work and recreational interests and he also has an extensive experience in financing agricultural initiatives http://timhornibrook.net.au/