Google is planning to buy HTC’s mobile division in a move that could see its go head to head with Apple and Samsung, it has been claimed.
HTC already makes Google’s Pixel phones, and according to claims from the Commercial Times, the firm is now ‘in the final stages’ of acquiring the entire division.
It would allow Google to build on the success of the Pixel handset, while allowing HTC to concentrate on more successful areas, such as its Vive VR headset.
According to the reports, the deal could be announced by the end of this year.
In 2012 Google made a $12.5 billion purchase of Motorola.
However, the firm chose to treat Motorola just like any other Android device maker, and ended up selling Motorola to Lenovo two years later for less than $3 billion.
It comes as Google is expected to reveal its latest Pixel handset next month.
Rumours have been swirling for months about Google’s next Pixel smartphones, and the latest report suggests we may finally have a release date.
Evan Blass, a well-known tech leaker, has tweeted that the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL will be revealed on October 2.
The move would allow Google to build on the success of the Pixel handset, while allowing HTC to concentrate on more successful areas, such as its Vive VR headset (pictured)
Google is yet to confirm this date, and told MailOnline that it ‘doesn’t comment on rumours or speculation.’
Evan Blass, a tech-leaker from Philadelphia, tweeted this morning: ‘Google’s second-generation Pixel handsets, powered by Snapdragon 836 SoC’s, will be unveiled on October 5th.’
HTC U Ultra smartphone has a 5.70-inch touchscreen display with a resolution of 1440 pixels by 2560 pixels
This also suggests that the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL will feature more sophisticated processers than the original Pixel phones, which have Snapdragon 835 processors.
Mr Blass has a strong track record for predicting when new technology will be launched, as well as features on devices.
Evan Blass, a tech-leaker from Philadelphia, tweeted this morning: ‘Google’s second-generation Pixel handsets, powered by Snapdragon 836 SoC’s, will be unveiled on October 5th’
GOOGLE PIXEL 2 RUMOURS
Leaked photos allegedly of the Google Pixel 2 give truth to some of the rumoured features.
Via the photos or per the tipster, we know:
The phone will have a curved screen.
It has two LEDs in the camera flash.
The back will be made of a glass panel.
Google is ditching the headphone jack for the device.
The source also reported a better in-hand feel than the original Pixel phone,
The source said the device is ‘sleek’ and ‘elegant.’
It is also expected to feature a Snapdragon 836 processor.
The rumours follow leaked images earlier this month, which claim to show Google’s Pixel 2 handset.
According to the photos, it appears the upcoming device will, as previously predicted, have a curved screen and a glass back.
However, one thing is missing – Google is planning to follow Apple and dump the headphone jack for the new device.
Also shown in the leaked images is the presence of two LEDs in the flash and a glass panel on the back, which is smaller this time around.
While previous leaks have suggested the phone will also be equipped with a Laser autofocus feature, that can’t be seen here – although it may just be too difficult to spot.
The photos, sent to Gsmarena by an unnamed tipster, show the front and back of what is clearly an early developer unit of the phone, as is indicated by the stickers on the back.
While the lack of headphone jack isn’t seen in the photo, the source told Gsmarena the device doesn’t include one.
The source also reported a better in-hand feel than the original Pixel phone, saying it is ‘sleek’ and ‘elegant.’
The original Google Pixel phone was launched in October 2016, and the Pixel 2 is set to launch this autumn, which would make it in direct competition with Apple’s iPhone 8 and the Samsung Galaxy Note 8.
Leaked images suggest that Google is planning to follow Apple and dump the headphone jack for the new device
Leaked images allegedly of the Google Pixel 2 reveal some of the device’s rumored features. According to the photos, it appears the upcoming device will indeed have a curved screen
As the company prepares for the release, it’s dropping the price on the original Pixel phone.
As part of a back to school promotion, the Pixel’s starting price is currently down to $524 (£408) instead of $649 (£506), while the Pixel XL is now priced at $569 (£443) rather than $769 (£600) – the company is also throwing in free Daydream View headsets for consumers who take advantage of the promotion.
Reports suggest Google is investing $880 million (£709 million) in LG’s flexible organic light emitting diode (OLED) screens for their Pixel 2 handset (pictured is first-generation Pixel handsets)
Insiders have long been suggesting the Google Pixel 2 could have a curved screen display like the Samsung Galaxy S8.
Reports suggest Google is investing $880 million (£709 million) in LG’s flexible organic light emitting diode (OLED) screens.
Increasingly curved screen are being adopted by smartphones and it seems Google want to move in this direction too, according to South Korea’s Electronic Times.
The report suggests that LG is yet to sign the massive investment offer proposed by Google.
In March, the head of hardware at Google first confirmed that the firm is developing a second-generation Pixel for the ‘premium smartphone market’.
The confirmation came from Rick Osterloh during an interview with AndroidPT.
‘There is an annual rhythm in the industry,’ Osterloh said in the interview.
‘So, you can count on us to follow it. You can count on a successor this year, even if you don’t hear a date from me now.’
Google debuted the first smartphones in its Pixel line during a conference in October 2016, a Pixel and the 5.5-inch Pixel XL.
Although the Pixel 2 release would fall around the same time as the iPhone 8, Google is focusing on the upper price segment of the market.
This may be tougher than imagined, if as speculated, the iPhone 8 turns out to cost over $1,000 (£780).
Osterloh stated that ‘Pixel stays premium’ and the firm will ‘leave lower price segments to other manufacturers’.
‘We believe the next big thing will be at the intersection of hardware and software,’ Mr Osterloh said in October.
He also took aim at Apple, saying the phone has ‘no unsightly phone bump.’
Brian Rakowski of Google said the phone was ‘designed inside and out to be smart’.
He said the Pixel’s camera was better than the iPhone 7.
‘It’s the best smartphone camera anyone has made,’ he said.