Gadgets for humans

Google could have avoided the Pixel 3 XL’s notch

Remove that notch.

From the Pixel 3 XL’s first leak, all the way through to using the device, I’ve been thinking about its big ugly notch. I hoped it wouldn’t be as bad as pictures. But I can confirm it’s both huge and distracting.

After the launch, a lot of people tweeted they might buy the smaller Pixel 3 – just because of the XL’s notch.


Phone-makers across the world justify the notch by saying it helps them fit an edge-to-edge screen. However, some phones – like the Oppo Find X and the Vivo Nex – showed us that the notch is not a necessity for that type of display. And Samsung’s notch-less phones look just fine.

Google‘s justification behind the notch is the dual camera system on the front. It could have easily included all the front sensors in a bar, just like the Pixel 2 XL’s design. It’s also worth noting that the size of the notch and the size of the bottom chin are not same.

The company confirmed that one can hide Pixel 3 XL’s notch through developer settings. And the phone actually looks a bit better with the notch turned off. That being said, Google‘s software handled the notch pretty well in my 24 hours of usage.

Credit: Ivan Mehta

Rick Osterloh, Google’s VP of Products, said that Fast Company named Google Design Company of the Year. I wonder what they have to say after looking at the Pixel 3 XL’s notch? Now, all we can do is wait for next year, and hope for a notch-less Pixel.

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Published October 10, 2018 — 13:36 UTC