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You may have to wait until 2023 for Google’s folding phone

Google has reportedly delayed the launch of the Pixel Fold, also known as the Pixel Notepad, once again. According to South Korean outlet The Elec, sources close to the production of the Pixel Notepad claim it has been delayed because the device in its current form doesn’t meet Google’s standards. It may mean the company’s first foldable smartphone will not be released until some point in 2023.

There are a few things that give the rumor of the Pixel Notepad’s latest delay some credibility. Last year rumors spread among display analysts that Google planned to launch the Pixel Notepad alongside the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro by the end of 2021, but the company never formally announced the device. This gave rise to the expectation the device would be unveiled at Google I/O 2022, the developer conference that took place earlier this month, but it was noticeably absent.

The rumor also lines up with a tweet from Ross Young, CEO of Display Supply Chain Consultants (DSCC), who states he has heard from multiple sources that the release of the Pixel Notepad has been delayed to spring 2023.

Hearing from multiple sources in their supply chain that the Google foldable launch was delayed till next spring…

— Ross Young (@DSCCRoss) May 25, 2022

The Pixel Notepad was expected to have a 7.57-inch main screen and a 5.8-inch secondary screen, which would have been provided by Samsung Display. While the screen sizes may not change, the latest rumor report claims Google may not be particularly pleased with the design, indicating the final look of the device still hasn’t been finalized.

On the positive side, if the rumor about the Pixel Notepad being delayed to next year is confirmed to be the case, that would give Google more time to fine-tune it for Android 13. Tuning the software correctly for use on a folding phone is a huge challenge, but essential for making the device pleasurable to use.

However, Google faces considerable pressure from Samsung should it finally release a foldable Pixel phone. Samsung currently owns the foldable phone space with the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 and the Galaxy Z Flip 3. While other foldables exist, such as the Oppo Find N, the Huawei Mate X2, and hybrids like the Microsoft Surface Duo 2, few have impacted Samsung’s share of the market.

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