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Pixel 8 hardware leaks suggest faster chip, tweaked screen ratios

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If the earliest of Pixel 8 and Pixel 8 Pro rumors are to be believed, there could be more RAM and a notably different chip inside even the lower-spec Pixel 8.
Enlarge / If the earliest of Pixel 8 and Pixel 8 Pro rumors are to be believed, there could be more RAM and a notably different chip inside even the lower-spec Pixel 8.

Ron Amadeo / Ars Technica

Google’s Pixel line changes from year to year, but one area of consistency is frequent supply chain leaks at every stage of a Pixel’s life. Just a few weeks after the Pixel 7 arrived in most people’s hands, a German website claims to have details of two Pixel-like devices being tested at Google.

WinFuture cites devices codenamed “Shiba” and “Husky,” both running Android 14 “Upside Down Cake” and sporting a new Tensor G3 system-on-a-chip developed with Samsung’s Exynos division. WinFuture’s source suggests the package, codenamed Zuma, would have the same 5G modem as the Tensor G2, but the processor would be based on Samsung’s 3 nm Exynos 2300, with the typical Google AI/ML improvements baked in. The Exynos 2300 was seemingly on the verge of cancellation but has recently shown up again in Bluetooth certification documents.

A 3 nm, Exynos-2300-based Tensor matches up with what noted Pixel hardware-watcher Kuba Wojciechowski has seen in export databases and heard from sources.

Our review of the Pixel 7 Pro noted that Google’s 5 nm Tensor chips, introduced because the company was supposedly “held back for years” by Qualcomm’s offerings, were slower than the newest Qualcomm offerings. A change in fabrication could help push Pixels beyond run-of-the-mill Android performance (but likely not even touch Apple’s significant lead).

The biggest change WinFuture suggests to these purported prototypes is 12GB of memory in both the 8 and 8 Pro models, making the standard 8 stand out more from the mid-to-higher-end competition. Screen shape and ratio could shift slightly, too, from 2400×1080 to 2268×1080 on the standard model and 3120×1440 to 2822×1344 on the Pro.

All this, WinFuture notes, is “pure speculation,” and the devices could be “only test platforms of Google’s hardware team.” There are indeed a number of Pixel platforms with hardware ideas floating around, including what could become the Pixel 7a, a highly speculative Pixel Fold (potentially delayed to 2023), and an ultrasonic fingerprint sensor test model on a “Pixel G10.”  That said, it’s easier to believe a leak about a Pixel product than just about any other flagship device out there.

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