Tuesday , June 5 2018

Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL screen protectors leak, apparently, with front-facing speakers and a notch

Google’s next Pixel launch event has got to be at least four months away, but it’s worth noting that it was about this time last year that credible rumours about the Pixel 2 started to appear. With that in mind, it’s not terribly surprising that we’re seeing leaks starting now at the end of May, but this one might be a little controversial.

Slashleaks shared some images last night of purported Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL screen protector designs. What we can see, above, is a design not too different from last year’s Pixel 2 range, with some changes. Front facing speakers remain, as well as the standard array of sensors atop the phones. The way the cutouts lie, though, seem to indicate a dual camera setup on the front though it could be that this is for some other sensor instead.

More noticeable is the notch atop the Pixel 3 XL display (though the Pixel 3 doesn’t share this). The notch has shown up on an increasing number of premium smartphones (though Samsung and HTC are yet to embrace it), and for (arguably) good reason; it allows a bit more screen real estate, at the cost of a “notch” taken out of the status bar area. I for one don’t mind this, but others do.

What’s our take? It’s early days; with a phone launch still four to five months away, a lot could change, and these screen protectors could be little more than a wish-list.

The notch is one of the more practical ways of extending available screen space without losing functionality (and front-facing sensors and cameras offer pretty core functions). Many of the complaints about the notched look have centred on how the phones work around it, rather than the presence of the notch itself, and with Android P gaining that OS level support, it’ll be interesting to see how Google handles it alongside what other OEMs have done.

Chris Rowland   Editor and Publisher

Chris has been at the forefront of smartphone reporting in Australia since smartphones were a thing, and has used mobile phones since they came with giant lead-acid batteries that were "transportable" and were carried in a shoulder bag. He saw the transition from AMPS to GSM, loved the Motorola StarTac, and got into Palm technologies in a big way. The arrival some years later of the original iPhone, and then the early Androids, awoke a new interest in mobile technology, and Chris has been writing about it since.

Today, Chris publishes one of Australia's most popular technology websites, Ausdroid. His interests include mobile (of course), as well as connected technology and how it can make all our lives easier.


  1. I don’t mind a notch if its reducing the bezel size at the top and bottom. It looks like it does here – although it would have been nicer to reduce the bottom bezel to be closer to the speaker.

  2. I think LG’s V20 version of the notch offset to one side is far more useful than the central notch everyone else has used. The second always on mini screeen is handy for notifications & quick actions.

  3. I don’t mind a notch. I do mind that the Bluetooth on my Pixel 2 XL is so unbelievably unreliable. Fine, take away my head phone jack, but don’t replace it with a Bluetooth system that drops the connection every 5 minutes (or less) when streaming music. And this happens with Bluetooth headphones, my car head unit and several other Bluetooth devices I own, so it’s definitely the handset. Something to do with LG manufacturing it (I seem to recall they don’t have the best reputation for Bluetooth reliability), or should I be taking it back as defective?

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