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I really hope the Google Pixel Fold 2 doesn’t look like this

A leaked hands-on photo of the Google Pixel Fold 2, showing a close-up of its camera module on the back.
Android Authority

This has been a busy week in terms of Google Pixel Fold 2 news. After a report about the phone’s potential new processor and RAM upgrades, we now have our supposed first look at Google’s second folding phone. And … well, it sure is something.

These photos of the Pixel Fold 2 come courtesy of Android Authority, who received them from an anonymous source — the same source that claims the Pixel Fold 2 will have a Tensor G4 chip. Right off the bat, you can see that something funky is happening with the phone’s camera module.

Gone is Google’s iconic camera bar that was on the original Google Pixel Fold. Instead, we have a bizarre-looking camera module that’s squished in the top-left corner of the back of the Pixel Fold 2. There appear to be four sensors in the camera module, with them organized into two pill shapes. There’s also an LED flash, and the whole thing is raised to create a significant-looking bump.

This is a very different design not only from the first Pixel Fold, but from all recent Pixel phones. We haven’t seen a Pixel without the camera bar since the Pixel 6 series was introduced in 2021, so this could be a sign of bigger changes coming to the entire Pixel family.

A supposed hands-on photo of the Google Pixel Fold 2.
Android Authority

Beyond the odd camera design, there are other big changes with the Pixel Fold 2’s design. Android Authority reports that the Pixel Fold 2 has a narrower cover screen compared to the first Pixel Fold, in addition to the inner screen aspect ratio being more square. It sounds like a form factor that would be similar to the OnePlus Open, which isn’t a bad thing at all.

The report goes on to indicate that the Pixel Fold 2 has a “more premium, seemingly aluminum frame.” Furthermore, Android Authority’s source claims that the Pixel Fold 2 is similar to its predecessor “in terms of feel and material.” Finally, it’s reported that the inner display has a camera cutout near the top-right corner. The original Pixel Fold doesn’t have a cutout here, as its larger bezels hide the inner camera completely, suggesting the Pixel Fold 2 is getting some much-needed bezel reductions.

Google Pixel Fold in Obsidian on a light wooden table.
Google Pixel Fold Christine Romero-Chan / Digital Trends

Personally, I’m not a huge fan of what I see here. I like the idea of a more manageable cover screen and inner display, but that camera bump? That’s not for me. The camera bar is one of Google’s most iconic design traits and gives it a clear distinction from its competitors. Eschewing that in favor of a more generic (and weirdly implemented) design seems like an odd decision.

The good news? The Pixel Fold 2 is supposedly in the Engineering Validation Test stage, meaning Google is still early in the design process and could very well change what the Pixel Fold 2 looks like between now and its release. Regardless, it’s a fascinating look into what Google may have planned for the Pixel Fold 2. If anything, we can count on this being an interesting phone to look forward to.

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Joe Maring
Section Editor, Mobile
Joe Maring is the Section Editor for Digital Trends' Mobile team, leading the site's coverage for all things smartphones…
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