A Verizon Pixel 2 box had an empty spot for some wired earbuds that looked like Google's Pixelbuds included, showcasing that it was initially intended to bundle a pair of wired headphones with the Pixel 2. More than having just the insert where the earbuds were supposed to be packaged inside of the box, there was also information about adjusting the earbuds in the quick start guide. This is according to a Verizon Wireless customer who posted images to his Twitter account showing the insert and the quick start guide. This also seems to be just one Verizon customer which ended up with this particular box.
It seems that Google has confirmed that it did indeed have the idea of packing these earbuds with the phone for consumers in the U.S. at one point but it wasn't mentioned if this was just intended to be with the Verizon model or the models that were sold by Google as well. The Pixel 2 was also supposed to come with a 3.5mm to USB Type-C adapter so that consumers could plug a normal pair of 3.5mm headphones into their phone if they chose to, instead of using the USB Type-C pair, but the user who got this particular box seems to have missed out on getting the adapter for use with standard headphones.
It's interesting to see an early version of the packaging that had Google considering adding some extra value to the purchase of its two newest phones, then ultimately deciding not to add in any earbuds at all.Whatever Google's reasons were, which could come down to trying to place more focus on its Pixel Buds earbuds, many users likely won't take too much issue with getting the dongle as they will be able to simply use a pair of headphones that they already own to listen to music, and for those that already have a really good quality pair to use even if Google did include a set of wired earbuds they probably wouldn't compare. All that said, it does probably come off as odd that Google would forego adding in earbuds of some sort when other brands are bundling them.