Google Pixel tablet and foldable to use the side fingerprint sensor

While the Pixel 7 series keeps the fingerprint sensor under the display, next year’s Pixel tablet and upcoming foldable Pixel will use traditional side-mounted sensors. New code reveals the display resolutions of the two devices.

One complaint that many long-time Pixel fans had about the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro is that Google moved the fingerprint sensor from the back of the phone to the front, placing it under the screen. . While some companies, like Samsung, have had decent success with under-display fingerprint readers, the Pixel 6 saw a significant slowdown compared to the Pixel 5.

Google has since improved the experience with the Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro, significantly speeding up the reading process and even introducing full face unlock support. Despite these improvements, it looks like Google’s upcoming Pixel devices – the Pixel 2023 tablet and the long-awaited Pixel “Notepad” foldable — will revert to traditional fingerprint sensors.

Our team discovered Android code designed explicitly to test the user interface of side fingerprint readers which indicate that Google is testing two specific devices with this style of sensor.

The first is called “Y-aligned” – meaning the fingerprint sensor is on the left or right side – and has two distinct configurations, “folded” and “unfolded”. This suggests that the foldable Pixel notebook should have a similar location for its fingerprint sensor as seen on the Galaxy Z Fold series.

Side fingerprint sensor on the Galaxy Z Fold 4

Notably, the “unfolded” details (i.e. the larger inner screen) show a display resolution of 1840×2208 – precisely matching the foldable Pixel Notepad information provided at 91Mobiles. Meanwhile, the “folded” version (probably the smallest outdoor screen) reveals a resolution of 1080×2100.

We’re guessing the main reason Google is switching from an under-display sensor to a traditional sensor on the foldable Pixel is to make sure the phone unlocks consistently whether it’s folded or unfolded, using the same sensor for both.

Then there’s a test for an “X-aligned” device, meaning the fingerprint sensor would be along the top or bottom edge. We believe this code is intended to cover the upcoming Pixel tablet, presumably placing its sensor on the top power/lock button, similar to the Pixel Slate. According to the code, the Pixel tablet — or perhaps, at least one model of it – will have a 2560×1600 resolution display.

Side fingerprint sensor on the Pixel Slate tablet (2018)
Lock button and fingerprint sensor combo on the Pixel Slate (2018)

Other details of the 91Mobiles The report, which our team has not yet been able to corroborate, says the Pixel Notepad’s internal display should measure around 123mm by 148mm, with 800 nits on average brightness and 1200 nits at its peak. Based on this resolution and display size, the Pixel Notebook could be quite similar in size and shape to the Galaxy Z Fold 4. It’s also possible, though unconfirmed, that the foldable could match the rate. Galaxy Z Fold 4 120Hz refresh rate.

Overall, we’re starting to get a clearer picture of where Google is taking the next Pixel series. After making great strides with the recent Pixel Watch and Pixel Buds Pro, Google’s hardware ecosystem could really start to rival Samsung’s with the introduction of a premium foldable and tablet.

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