Google’s Pixel Fold, Set For June Launch – Report

Internal documents reportedly show Google is planning to launch its first foldable smartphone, dubbed the Pixel Fold, in June

Alphabet’s Google division is to enter the high-end smartphone market with a launch of a foldable device in the summer.

Google’s first foldable phone, dubbed the ‘Pixel Fold,’ will launch in June, according to internal communications viewed by CNBC. Indeed, Google reportedly plans to announce the device at its annual developer conference, Google I/O, on 10 May.

If Google does indeed provide a foldable device, it will place it in direct competition to the likes of Samsung, Huawei, Oppo, Motorola, Honor and others.

Pixel Fold

According to the CNBC report, the Pixel Fold, known internally by the codename “Felix,” will have the “most durable hinge on a foldable” phone.

It will reportedly cost upward of $1,700 and compete with Samsung’s $1,799 Galaxy Z Fold 4.

Google apparently intends to market the Pixel Fold as water-resistant and pocket-sized, with an outside screen that measures 5.8 inches across, according to the documents.

Photos viewed by CNBC show that the phone will open like a book to reveal a small tablet-sized 7.6-inch screen, the same size as the display on Samsung’s competitor. The device reportedly weighs 10oz, slightly heavier than the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4, but it has a larger battery that Google says will last for 24 hours, or up to 72 hours in a low power mode.

One of the downsides to foldable devices has been that hinges can reduce internal space that would usually be occupied by a bigger battery.

The Pixel Fold is powered by Google’s Tensor G2 chip, CNBC reported, citing the internal documents.

That is the same processor that launched in the Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro phones last October.

A Google spokesperson declined to comment, CNBC reported.

Samsung is the current market leader for foldable devices, despite some initial teething troubles and poor reviews when its foldable phones first launched.

Bing search engine

News of Google’s potential rival to Samsung comes amid reports of a declining relationship between the two tech giants.

The New York Times recently reported that Google’s staff were shocked when they learned in March that Samsung was considering replacing Google with Microsoft’s Bing as the default search engine on its devices.

Switching to the Bing search engine as the default search engine on Samsung portfolio of smartphones would deprive Google of an estimated $3 billion in annual revenue, and would be a significant win for Microsoft.

According to the CNBC viewed internal documentation, Google will offer incentives in a bid to convince people to switch to the Pixel Fold. For example, Google reportedly plans to offer a trade-in option to swap in a current Pixel, iPhone or an Android-powered phone for a discount on the Pixel Fold.

It also plans to offer a free Pixel Watch, the company’s latest smartwatch, to Pixel Fold buyers.