It looks increasingly likely that the Google Pixel 2 and Pixel XL 2 will ditch the 3.5mm headphone port.
We’ve already seen a leaked CAD (a computer-generated image of the product designed to help during the manufacturing process) that showed no signs of a 3.5mm port, which was soon followed by a slew of third-party cases without universal headphone port.
And now 9to5Google Managing Editor Stephen Hall has tweeted that the upcoming flagship smartphone will ditch the 3.5mm headphone port.
According to Hall, the information is based on having “seen both internal documentation and been told by someone who has seen protos”.
As always, it’s worth taking this rumour with a healthy pinch of salt, especially since prototypes (or protos, as Stephen Hall says) are not always an accurate reflexion of the final commercial product.
However, it is certainly looking more likely Pixel 2 and Pixel XL 2 will drop the port in favour of Bluetooth connectivity and connection to audio devices via USB Type-C.
It’s certainly a bold move, especially given how much Google mocked the decision to drop the 3.5mm headphone port from the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus in the marketing of the original Pixel.
But while the decision to drop the 3.5mm headphone port can be unpopular, it does make sense.
Consumers want thinner, lighter smartphones that still pack advanced cameras and high-resolution displays – which means every inch of real estate inside the device is at a premium.
If there is a port capable of doubling up, it makes a certain amount of sense to drop one and fill the space with additional battery, or a new feature.
The ability to include stereo speakers inside the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus is believed to be a direct result of dropping the headphone port.
Apple and Google aren’t the only manufacturers dropping the 100-year-old technology from their latest devices.
HTC and Motorola have already dropped the port, and rumours about Huawei and Samsung following suit have also surfaced online.
The news comes as another slew of Google Pixel 2 and Pixel XL 2 cases leaked online.
Case manufacturer Olixar this week published renders of what the company expects the new Pixel phones to look like.
These cases suggest the camera on the rear will includes a large single sensor – rather than the dual camera set-ups on the iPhone 7 Plus and OnePlus 5 – as well as the fingerprint scanner.
Google also appears to have kept the coloured glass window (one of the only design flourishes on the…