Google Pixel 5: Release date, rumours, specs and leaks

Google’s next flagship smartphone is still a little way off but that doesn’t mean the leaks and rumours haven’t started to appear, offering some indication as to what we can expect.

The mid-range Pixel 4a is due to be announced first – likely in May – but here is everything we have heard so far about the Pixel 5.

Release date and price

  • October 2020

Google has announced all of its flagship Pixel smartphones in October so we’re expecting the Pixel 5 to also appear in October.

The original Pixel, Pixel 2 and Pixel 3 devices were all revealed at the beginning of October, while the Pixel 4 was revealed towards the end of the month so it is not currently clear when exactly the Pixel 5 will appear, but October is the month we are penciling in our diaries for now. 

In terms of price, the Pixel 4 starts at £669 or $799, while the Pixel 4 XL starts at £829 or $899. We’d expect Google to stick around a similar price point, hopefully without too much increase.

Design

  • Different camera housing
  • Matt glass rear

There haven’t been a huge amount of leaks regarding the design of the Pixel 5 as yet, but that’s likely to change over the next couple of months so watch this space. Google itself teased snippets of the Pixel 4 months before it was announced so perhaps the same will happen for the Pixel 5.

So far, there has been one leak claiming to be one of three prototypes of the Pixel 5. It was shown on Front Page Tech’s YouTube channel and it shows a triple rear camera in a U-shaped housing in the centre at the top of the device. The flash sits in the middle of the three lenses, making it look like a face. 

Front Page Tech does say it is just one of the prototypes for now though so if you aren’t a fan, there’s a chance it won’t happen. Apparently the other two prototypes have square rear camera housings like the Pixel 4.

Other details show a coloured power button – a signature Pixel feature – and it’s also claimed the Pixel 5 will have a matt glass finish on the rear like the Pixel 4.

Display 

  • Two sizes?
  • OLED likely
  • Higher refresh rate possible

The Pixel 4 has a 5.7-inch display, while the Pixel 4 XL has a 6.3-inch display. We expect the Pixel 5 to come in two sizes again, as the Pixel line has done since launch, but it is not yet clear if Google will stick with the same sizes for the 2020 devices.

There have been rumours of one device for the Pixel 4a rather than two though, so there is also a chance the company might do the same for the Pixel 5 if this happens. According to Front Page Tech, the front of the Pixel 5 prototype still has a bezel at the top of the display.

The Pixel 4 devices have a 90Hz refresh rate, OLED panels and HDR support so we’d expect the same for the Pixel 5, if not a step up to 120Hz refresh rate to compete with the Samsung Galaxy S20 range.

Cameras 

  • Triple rear camera possible
  • Night Sight 

The Google Pixel 5 could come with three cameras on the rear, matching the likes of the Apple iPhone 11 Pro. According to Front Page Tech, the third lens will be a wide angle lens. 

We’d expect Google to continue offering features like Night Sight and the ability to capture the stars, with more improvements and features likely to appear on the Pixel 5.  

Hardware and specs

  • Qualcomm SD865 
  • Reverse wireless charging?

The Google Pixel 5 will likely have the latest Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 processor under its hood and at least 6GB of RAM – hopefully more given the competing Samsung Galaxy S20 range has double this in even the standard model.

A bump in internal storage compared to the Pixel 4 that comes in 64GB or 128GB would also be welcomed for the Pixel 5, or the addition of microSD support but we suspect the latter is less likely.

A jump in battery would also be welcomed. The Pixel 4 has a 2800mAh battery capacity, while the Pixel 4 XL has a 3700mAh battery. A report has suggested the Pixel 5 could support reverse wireless charging, allowing it to charge other wireless charging compatible devices, but nothing is confirmed as yet.

In terms of biometrics, the Pixel 4 offered face unlock but no fingerprint sensor. We’d like to see an under display fingerprint sensor as a back up option on the Pixel 5.

Google Pixel 5: What’s happened so far?

This is everything that has been speculated about the Google Pixel 5 so far.

19 February 2020: Pixel 5 could support reverse wireless charging 

XDA Developers spotted a hidden Battery Share menu in the first Android 11 Developer Preview for Pixel devices. According to the site, the Battery Share menu page says “your phone’s battery will run out faster when using battery share. Battery share works with compatible ear buds, watches, phones, and more.”

Reverse wireless charging isn’t mentioned directly, nor is the Pixel 5, but the description is pretty much what reverse wireless charging is so it’s not unreasonable to suggest it could be coming to the next Pixel device.

14 February 2020: Render of Pixel 5 XL appears on Twitter

A render of one of three prototypes of the Pixel 5 XL has been shown on Front Page Tech’s YouTube channel showing another camera housing that is likely to divide opinion.

According to presenter Jon Prosser, the prototype has a matte glass finish like the current Pixel 4 and the third lens at the bottom of the housing is claimed to be an ultra-wide angle sensor.

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