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New Pixel Phones and Andromeda OS Expected at Google Event
Posted September 27, 2016
New Pixel Phones and Andromeda OS Expected at Google Event
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By Jef Cozza. Updated September 27, 2016 9:55AM

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As Google celebrates its 18th birthday today, we are only one week away from the company's October 4 press event, and with it the promise of new smartphones, a new operating system, and a new laptop. While nothing is confirmed yet, the company appears to be ready to ring in adulthood with a slew of announcements centering around two key words: Pixel and Andromeda.

The most significant new product expected to launch next week is the rumored Pixel smartphone, if for no other reason than what it portends for Google’s Android-powered Nexus line.

While Nexus has been the company’s flagship hardware product for years, it may either be discontinued or folded into the Pixel family of products next week. The company already has the Pixel 2 Chromebook and Pixel C tablet (pictured above), and merging the two lines would make sense from a marketing standpoint.

Two New Smartphones

Google is expected to launch two Pixel phones Tuesday: the 5-inch Pixel and the 5.5-inch Pixel XL. Both are expected to feature bodies made out of aluminum and glass, making them more like Apple's iPhone than the plastic Nexus phones. The investment in higher quality materials would also explain the Pixel’s rumored starting price, which at $649 is closer to an Apple product than Google’s typically less expensive alternatives.

Both models are also believed to be manufactured by HTC, another change of pace for the company whose Nexus 5X was built by LG Electronics while the Nexus 6P was built by Huawei. The decision to go with a single, new manufacturer makes sense, given the rumors that Google wanted to maintain more control over the design and production of the new models so they could go head-to-head with the iPhone as well as Samsung's Galaxy flagship devices.

The new phones are each expected to feature a 12MP rear camera and 8MP front-facing camera, along with a fingerprint reader similar to the one on the iPhone.

The Release of Andromeda?

And the phones aren't the only new Pixels expected to launch Tuesday. Google is also expected to announce a new modular laptop, the Pixel 3. The Chromebook, whose codename is "Bison," is believed to feature an ultra-thin form factor and improved battery life.

Not only that, the Pixel 3 may give us our first glimpse of Google’s rumored new operating system, Andromeda. Although the company has long been rumored to be working on a plan to merge its Android operating system for devices with the more full-featured Chrome OS, the Pixel 3 may finally be the product to show it off. If it does, it will represent the debut of Google’s first unified operating system designed for laptops, phones, and tablets.

We may also see a handful of other products launch next week, including a new 7-inch tablet built by Huawei, which is also expected to run the new Andromeda system. The company may also introduce Google Home, its competitor to Amazon's Echo platform, along with a new line of Wi-Fi routers and extenders.

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