Google Pixel 4 first review: bezels galore, faster internals, and a display to rival the OnePlus 7 Pro

YouTube video offers a VERY detailed look at the Google Pixel 4, which isn't set to launch until next month

Google Pixel 4 first review
(Image credit: AnhEm TV / YouTube)

Poor Google... The search engine giant is having a tough time keeping its upcoming flagship Pixel 4 a secret. In fact, there have already been so many leaks about the Californian firm's next handset that it took the unprecedented step of confirming part of the design on Twitter months before its announcement. Yikes.

Unfortunately, things aren't getting better for the company as the latest leak take things to a whole new level. A YouTube personality has managed to obtain a prototype handset and has posted a very detailed video of their first impressions of the smartphone, which will likely go on-sale late next month.

The detailed video is available on the channel AnhEm TV, or in the player below:

Regrettably, Vietnamese was not one of the options available at our local comprehensive, so we're struggling to work out exactly what the early impressions of these Google Pixel 4 are. Thankfully, some helpful Pixel fans have broken down the key points on Reddit. And it sounds mightily impressive.

The Google Pixel 4 in the video is an early demo. As such, there are a few features that aren't working – like the confirmed gesture-controls and facial recognition, and front-facing cameras, which are rumoured to sport the same secondary ultra-wide angle lens to take group shots without the help of a Selfie Stick.

But while the gestures and face unlock don't work, it's easy to see how the introduction of these features have changed the industrial design of the handset. The Pixel 4 has ditched the curvaceous notch seen on the Pixel 3 XL in favour of a thicker bezel with curved edges reminiscent of the design of the Google Pixel 2 XL.

Compared to its closest Android rivals, that design is starting to look pretty dated... although it will purportedly offer more secure facial recognition that any of its rivals can currently muster.

Google Pixel 4 first review

(Image credit: AnhEm TV / YouTube)

The fact that this is a pre-release demo unit explains some of the lagginess seen in the video while navigating around the handset, which is running Android 10, including the new iPhone-esque navigation gestures that let you swipe-up from the bottom of the edge-to-edge display to return to the Home Screen and swipe-and-hold to enter the multi-tasking view.

Pixel 4 will have an all-glass design to enable wireless charging. Unlike previous entries in the Pixel series, there will not be a dual-tone finish on the back of the Pixel 4. This marks the first-time in its history that it will drop this trademark design.

According to the demo unit in this video, Pixel 4 will be powered by a top-of-the-line Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 system-on-a-chip, coupled with 6GB of RAM. It's unclear what storage configurations will be available based on the info in this clip.

Finally – and perhaps most excitingly of all – Google Pixel 4 looks set to ship with a 90Hz high refresh rate OLED display. That's the same technology found inside the OnePlus 7 Pro and OnePlus 7 Pro 5G. It enables smoother transitions and system animations across the operating system. According to Reddit, Google will brand this feature "SmoothDisplay," which is descriptive... if a little uninventive.

In the settings menu featured in this video, Google warns that keeping the refresh rate at 90Hz can deplete your battery faster than usual. As such, the Google Pixel 4 will give users the option to keep the OLED display on 60Hz all the time, if they want to focus on nothing but battery life. It's unclear whether entering Low Power mode on the Pixel 4 will automatically cut Smooth Display.

That display is a 6.2-inch OLED with a 3,040 x 1,440 resolution, which equates to a pretty impressive 540 pixels-per-inch. For comparison, Pixel 3 had a pixel density of 443 pixels-per-inch, so it should be noticeably sharper than its predecessor.

Google is widely-expected to hold its annual Made By Google hardware event in early October, so there's not long to wait until we find out the remaining few details about the Google Pixel 4 – and get to make our own impressions on it.

Aaron Brown

As a former Staff Writer for T3, Aaron writes about almost anything shiny and techie. When he’s not barking orders at Alexa-powered microwaves or gawping at 5G speed tests, Aaron covers everything from smartphones, tablets and laptops, to speakers, TVs and smart home gadgets. Prior to joining T3, Aaron worked at the Daily Express and and MailOnline.