Google Pixel 5S breaks cover – steals this KEY feature from iPhone 12 Pro Max

A new Google Pixel 5 variant has popped that will compete with the iPhone 12 premium model

Google Pixel 5
(Image credit: OnLeaks/ Pricebaba)

Google is set to launch the Pixel 5 alongside the Pixel 4a 5G at the end of the end of the month, pipping the iPhone 12 to the post with an earlier launch than its initially reported October window.    

Although it might not be packing as many premium features as the iPhone 12's top tier handsets, the latest leak suggests that a second Pixel 5 variant is in the works, and that it's sporting a key feature that will only be found in the Pro Max model in Apple's range of smartphones.   

A photo of the handset was posted on Twitter by Mexican tech writer Jose Antonio Ponton and shows off a Pixel device dubbed 'Pixel 5s' in the phone's firmware.

This year has been a bit of roller-coaster for Pixel fans, with the Pixel 4a's May launch being pushed back due to the pandemic, and the Pixel 5 XL being scrapped entirely, so a second variant of Google's next flagship is a bit of a surprise this close to launch.

We don't know what hardware differences the new naming convention denotes, but XDA Developers' Mishaal Rahman says this isn't the first time he's heard of the device, and speculates that the Pixel 5s could offer mmWave 5G. and be around $100 more expensive that the Sub-6 model.      

Apple appears to be future-proofing at least one of the handsets in its upcoming flagship range with the iPhone 12 Pro Max that's rumoured to support high-bandwidth mmWave 5G. 

The smartphone will be that much more expensive because of it, but if Google is rolling out a version of the Pixel 5 – which is set to launch for the same price as the original Pixel – with support for mmWave, early-adopters in areas that offer the speedy 5G will be able to take advantage of that without having to shell out for a premium tier phone with the price tag to match. 

Of course, as with the Pixel 5 XL, we don't know if this particular model will ever see the light of day, given we've heard barely anything about it, but with just a few weeks left before the alleged launch date, it won't be long before we get official confirmation from Google.  

Shabana Arif

Shabana worked at as News Editor covering tech and gaming, and has been writing about video games for almost a decade (and playing them since forever). She's had bylines at major gaming sites during her freelance career before settling down here at T3, and has podcasts, streaming, and video content under her belt to boot. Outside of work, she also plays video games and should really think about expanding her hobbies. If you have any tech or gaming tips, shoot over an email or DM her on social media.