Nearly one year ago, Google declared that it was getting serious about designing its own gadgets by launching the Google Pixel and Google Home. This week, we’ll finally see what the next generation of those devices looks like.
The search giant is holding an event on October 4 where it will presumably unveil a new version of the Pixel, another voice-activated smart speaker, and other product updates. Here’s a rundown of what to expect.
New Google Pixel Phones
This will likely be the biggest announcement Google makes on October 4. Google is reportedly planning to announce two new Pixel phones, one of which may come with a 5-inch screen and another with a larger 6-inch display, according to a post on developer forum XDA. The biggest change, however, may not be the screen itself, but the area around it.
The new phones are also expected to come with a new function that makes it possible to launch the Google Assistant by squeezing the device’s edges. The strongest evidence of this was found in Google’s own code, which references an unreleased feature called Active Edge as blog 9to5Google noticed. Otherwise, the two new Pixels are rumored to include a new design with smaller bezels around the screen, a camera that performs better in low light, and a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor — the same chipset that powers phones like the OnePlus 5 and Essential Phone.
Google Home Mini
Google may release a smaller, cheaper version of its Google Home smart speaker to compete with Amazon’s Echo Dot. The device, which Android Police first reported, will reportedly cost $49 and will be available in chalk, charcoal, and coral colors, according to a leak published by Droid Life. Whereas the current Google Home resembles a cross between a short vase and an air freshener, the mini looks more like a tiny pod.
Google Home Max
Judging by the latest rumors, Google may be looking to turn its Home speaker into a whole family of products, similar to what Amazon has done with its Echo. The company is reportedly developing a larger version of the Home with stereo speakers called the Google Home Max, according to 9to5Google.
The report didn’t mention a specific price, but did describe the Home Max as a “premium” product, hinting that it could be more expensive than the $129 Home. There are no hints about the release date, either, but 9to5Google says there’s a “possibility” Google will announce it at its upcoming event.
New Google Chromebook Pixel
A revamped version of Google’s Pixel laptop could also make an appearance on Oct. 4, reports Android Police. Details are slim, but the report speculates that this laptop could be related to a previously rumored project that Google codenamed Bison. The Bison laptop was intended to be a rival to Apple’s MacBook Air and Microsoft’s Surface Pro with a 12.3-inch screen and support for a stylus that would have been sold separately. It’s unclear, however, if the new Pixel laptop is a new version of the same device.
Google Assistant Updates
Google has made several announcements about its virtual assistant over the past several weeks, and there’s a chance we’ll hear more details on October 4. Google recently announced that its voice assistant will be coming to Android TV, a specific model of Bose headphones, and several new appliances and speakers. Google could use its event as an opportunity to reveal more devices that will work with the Google Assistant in the near future, especially on the heels of Amazon’s recent Echo and Alexa announcements.
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