At the May Google I/O 2022 keynote, the search-engine giant announced its plans to unleash the Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro at the end of this year. Google teased the phone, sprinkling enough information to arouse excitement among the masses, but still played coy to foment mysteriousness.
However, an eBay listing may have foiled Google's plans to keep a veil of secrecy over the next-generation flagship phone. According to XDA Developers, a purported prototype of the Google Pixel 7 appeared on the e-commerce marketplace. On top of that, the seller claims that the listing's photos were taken with the Pixel 7 Pro.
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Pixel 7 discovered in now-defunct eBay listing
You may be wondering, "How did the seller get a hold of a pre-release Google device?" The seller told The Verge that he obtained the Pixel 7 from a wholesaler "without knowing what it was." It wasn't until he did some research that he discovered what was in his possession. There is virtually no chance this is true as a wholesaler would not receive a prototype and we are too far out from the believed October launch date for wholesalers to have them. That leaves open the possibility these units were stolen from or misplaced by a Google engineer or partner.
The listing is now closed, but it's unclear whether the seller cancelled it himself or eBay pulled it down due to a complaint from Google.
This isn't the first time an unreleased Google device was discovered in the wild. According to ExtremeTech, a Russian blog Rozetked got a hold of an unannounced Pixel 3 XL two months before its release because "Google made a terrible mistake [...] and [misplaced] a batch of finished devices."
A pre-release Pixel 6a was discovered inside of a coloring book in January (I know it sounds bizarre, but it's true). The Google Pixel Watch recently leaked, too. According to Android Central, the wearable was found inside a restaurant.
The now-defunct Pixel 7 listing showed off a black prototype with 128GB of storage, 8GB of RAM, a hole punch-display, and an extrusive camera bar that reminds me of Star Trek's La Forge. It looks similar to the renders Google displayed at the I/O event. The sweatband — er, I mean — camera bar appears to be made out of aluminum (its predecessor's camera bar consisted of plastic and glass).
The glass back of the Pixel 7 is so lustrous, XDA Developers discovered that the seller took photos of the eBay listing with the Pixel 7 Pro (the seller told The Verge that the Pro model is now sold). The photos also show that the Pixel 7 is seemingly in working condition; the display is turned on and reportedly running Android 13 with apps that are still in development.
Still, it's important to keep your grain of salt handy; this product leak may not be legit. The Pixel 7, due to hit store shelves in late 2022, is rumored to have a display between 6.2 and 6.4 inches. With its upgraded, next-generation Tensor ship, we can't wait to see what the upcoming Pixel 7 (and Pixel 7 Pro) can do.
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Kimberly Gedeon, holding a Master's degree in International Journalism, launched her career as a journalist for MadameNoire's business beat in 2013. She loved translating stuffy stories about the economy, personal finance and investing into digestible, easy-to-understand, entertaining stories for young women of color. During her time on the business beat, she discovered her passion for tech as she dove into articles about tech entrepreneurship, the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) and the latest tablets. After eight years of freelancing, dabbling in a myriad of beats, she's finally found a home at Laptop Mag that accepts her as the crypto-addicted, virtual reality-loving, investing-focused, tech-fascinated nerd she is. Woot!