Why Google's Pixel 4 teaser is a brilliant move

This article may contain personal views and opinion from the author.
Why Google's Pixel 4 teaser is a brilliant move
Yesterday we were merely speculating which design would the next Pixels likely employ, and today things are literally set in stone as Google--yes,Google--went full sicko mode and revealed its upcoming flagship device by sharing an image on Twitter. 

You've probably seen it already, but in case you haven't, just take a peek below.


Even though we are four months or so before the Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL go official, the rumor mill had started churning out spicy information and speculation long before Google decided to get on top of the game and proudly announce, "Yes, the Pixel 4 exists and it will look like that". And I think this a genius move that signals a paradigm shift for Google. Let's explore why this is such an outstanding move.

#1. It generates hype


We've seldom seen a phone company suck it up and officially acknowledge the rumors that are circulating around the air. Sure, they don't generally comment on leaks and renders, but it would be childish to assume they aren't aware of all the buzz-talk surrounding their secretive next gadget. And what's a better way to create hype for your product than creating it yourself?

Some, like OnePlus, have actually employed controlled official reveals and teasers as a pre-announcement marketing strategy that seemingly works wonders for the popularity and hype. The OnePlus 7 Pro, for example, got its fair share of media attention days before its official announcement when OnePlus teased that it will come along with a ground-breaking display. The masses were already starving to see OnePlus' newest flagship, and this controlled teaser was the equivalent of a parched traveler stumbling upon an oasis. And this is totally not the first time OnePlus has engaged in such type of guerrilla marketing that's more akin to up-and-coming start-ups, never-mind established companies that have already made a name for themselves in the industry. 

Certainly, self-promotion on social media isn't something new or something that OnePlus in particular invented, no. However, this is probably the first time Google has pro-actively engaged the never-stopping leak/rumor culture. And let me remind you that this was the very same culture that was responsible for the unprecedented full disclosure of th Pixel 3a/3a XL mid-rangers months before the search giant even announced it. Heck, a full hands-on video originating from Ukraine revealed all the ins and outs of the non-released devices. 

Google's Pixel 4 teaser essentially gets ahead of all recent leaks and rumors, and eliminates most of the fluff speculation that was about to poison the air in the coming months. Instead, Mountain View successfully kick-started constructive hype for its devices! No longer will we wonder how many cameras or what design will the rear of the upcoming Pixels boast; instead, most speculation will shift towards the specifics of the already-revealed rear design. Is the secondary camera a wide-angle or a telephoto one? Is the small hole on the camera setup a spectral sensor... or just a microphone? Is the camera bump pronounced or flush with the body? What does the front look like?

#2. One-upping Apple


Okay, this one could be a bit of a petty stretch, but bear with me.

We've already heard that the next round of iPhones might employ a triple-camera setup that would be housed in a very similar square-ish camera module. These rumors were based on multiple sources close to Apple's production plants over in China, as well as one of those pretty telling CAD drawings. While Apple will most certainly release its next iPhones well before Google announces the Pixel 4 lineup, the general public might view Apple as the copycat in this situation, because an official teaser from a company beats an unconfirmed leak any day of the week. Although it might be a petty thing to say or acknowledge, I'm certain that upon seeing the next batch of iPhones many Android fans will exclaim "Google did it first!"


Google indeed seems to establish itself as a trend-setter after failing to become a truly mainstream phone maker for years. Despite all their merits, Pixels never enjoyed steady sales numbers. The latter can be attributed to either low supply and Google's inability to meet the existing demand for some of its previous Pixel releases. Moreover, the Pixel 2/2 XL release was ridden by tons of bugs and issues that certainly left a bad taste in the mouths of the unlucky adopters. 

It's time for a paradigm change at Google. Is it going to continue with its sub-standard phone releases or would amp things up and deliver in both the quality and quantity departments.

#3. The public will get accustomed to the camera bump


Let's say it - many, including myself, are not convinced with the aesthetics of the rear camera setup. It looks too large and unsightly, lacking the cheerful and easy-going design of the Pixel 3/3a lineups. Of course, people would get accustomed to literally anything given enough time, and thus this teaser is a genius move on Google's part.

For one, it acknowledges that such a setup would most certainly be present on the Pixel 4 lineup. Second of all, Google is preventing all the bad press that could criticize them for using such a crass design element later this fall. If there's about to be any open criticism, it's happening now, and not in the October/November period when the Pixel 4 family goes official. 

People will most certainly have accepted the idea that the next Google phone won't be such a looker, and will most likely focus on its good features. Truth be told, how often do you look at the rear of your phone? Mine-and yours-disdain for offset square camera bumps is a pet peeve that doesn't really matter in the grand scheme of things. The camera performance is infinitely more important than design, very possibly the make-or-break functionality of a modern smartphone. Whatever any of these companies put there, there's a high chance that the core fanbase will suck it up and accept the fact. 

I think we should all do the same. Silence, trolls.

#4. The Pixel is finally going mainstream


After years of standing its way and relying on merely a single camera to deliver outstanding results, Google has finally realized that the potential phone adopters in late 2019 will have a very niche and particular list of needs that need to be met. Buying a flagship smartphone in 2019 is very similar to a long-term relationship with another human being - if all goes to plan, you will be together for a few years at least, and you are way more careful in your consumer research beforehand. 

It'll be suicidal if the Pixel 4 doesn't really come with a ultra wide-angle camera, which will most certainly be present on each flagship smartphone by the end of the year. Telephoto camera experience can be sort of emulated with Google's imaging algorithms that produce not-too-shabby digitally-zoomed images. Still, you can't really emulate a ultra wide-angle camera with software.

With Google caving in and adopting such a sensor it clearly sends the message that is aiming for the true mainstream, where a minor missing feature can make or break an otherwise-excellent device. Surely, Google could have tried pulling out the jack-of-all-trades single camera once again, but I don't see this panning out very well.

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17 Comments

1. SyCo87

Posts: 305; Member since: Sep 19, 2013

Beautiful.

2. AlienKiss

Posts: 154; Member since: May 21, 2019

A bad copy of the Sony Xperia 1 which is looking stunning. This one simply looks cheap.. Oh, no SD card slot = not interested (even though you finally ditched the silly notch). But keep trying :))

5. AnTuTu

Posts: 1611; Member since: Oct 14, 2012

Sure one can simply judge the build quality of a phone through renders and merely teasers. Wish I had those super powers. And yeah totally they are copying Sony since Sony is doing so amazing in smartphone market.

15. BuffaloSouce unregistered

If you're going to say keep trying, then let's see the smartphone you put together....oh wait...

3. iloveapps

Posts: 855; Member since: Mar 21, 2019

Apple killing a feature. Android: we did it first. Sad but true.

6. AnTuTu

Posts: 1611; Member since: Oct 14, 2012

Dude at least put some effort in your comments. Aren't you getting enough money to troll on these sites from a company that sells monitor stands for $999???

17. Mike88

Posts: 401; Member since: Mar 05, 2019

They'll even sell those monitor stands more than all the pixel phones sold till date,, it's not because they are from Apple, it's because they are so amazing... Every product Apple builds is a true high quality worth the price beautiful thing to own

13. Elementaldragon

Posts: 1; Member since: Jun 13, 2019

Really? Because Google also kind of did this to say that their phone was already being designed with a square camera bump? So that iSheep like you couldn't turn around and say "blah blah Google always copies Apple blah blah?". Tell me, how many features of Android has Apple put into iOS over the past several years?

4. Cat97

Posts: 1890; Member since: Mar 02, 2017

It's a plain Jane hardware design, with the screen placed backwards in order to remove the chin but add an unavoidable forehead. Not sure what the hype is about ? A square bump on the back? Google does mediocre hardware but with some decent software. Not worth the hype.

7. mahima

Posts: 729; Member since: Nov 20, 2014

Nice article...had a doubt its an original article...almost...lol

8. kevv2288

Posts: 294; Member since: Jul 30, 2015

I don't think Google

9. kevv2288

Posts: 294; Member since: Jul 30, 2015

Did I miss something, I don't think Google revealed the front of the Pixel 4, did they?

10. Sparkxster

Posts: 1228; Member since: Mar 31, 2017

Google hasn't revealed the front so you didn't miss anything.

11. dnomadic

Posts: 415; Member since: Feb 20, 2015

If this is the front, I can live with it. I prefer it over the notch (which I live with) and the punch hole (which I liked). I preference a small forehead with camera and an uninterrupted view of a large screen (reality we look at the center of the screen so it mostly doesn’t matter) I will HAPPILY return to Google if this is it. I have lived with this iPhone on 2 separate occasions this year, but my heart was waiting on a more beautiful google device.

12. Alex_12

Posts: 47; Member since: May 30, 2018

Well said! Can't wait to see the next generation Pixel phone.

14. TBomb

Posts: 1484; Member since: Dec 28, 2012

If only one of these reasons could be true, my money would be on #3. The public will get accustomed to the camera bump. People always have a strong reaction towards new things. It all eventually subsides. By saying "hey, this unpopular decision was made" now, by the time the phone comes out in 4 months, it will be less emotional for everyone.

16. LBLBLB

Posts: 21; Member since: Oct 19, 2017

I hope they ditch the display cut-outs completely. No notch, no pinhole, no rounded corners.

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