Android 9 Pie is still considered to be a brand new version of Android, but that did not stop Google from testing Android Q on the Pixel 3 XL, it seems. A listing surfaced on Geekbench, showing the Google Pixel 3 XL with Android Q pre-installed. This seems to be a test unit, as Google is almost certainly already testing Android Q, though we're probably looking at a really early build of the OS here. This listing does not reveal any info about the update, though, of course, as this is just a benchmarking tool. The Google Pixel 3 XL which is fueled by Android Q managed to hit 2,404 points in the single-core, and 8,510 points in the multi-core test, and that's not exactly far off the unit that got tested with Android 9 Pie on board. This phone surfaced on Geekbench yesterday, on November 20, and it's your regular Google Pixel 3 XL unit, it seems, it comes with 4GB of RAM and the Snapdragon 845, as pointed out by Geekbench.
Background: Google first mentioned Android P aka Android 9 Pie, back in May during Google I/O, Google's developer conference. Back then, that update was simply known as "Android P", while Google revealed its full name a couple of months ago. During Google I/O, though, the company did reveal quite a few features that will come with Android 9 Pie, while it also demoed a number of those features, so we can look forward to seeing the same for Android Q next year. Google I/O is still about six months away, though, and even though Google is testing Android Q, the OS is probably not even in beta at this point. Android 9 Pie did not make its way to many non-Google-made devices at this point, the Essential PH-1, OnePlus 6, and OnePlus 6T do run Android 9 Pie, same goes for the LG G7 One Android One phone, but a number of other Android One devices, and phones, in general, are still waiting for the update to arrive.
The Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL are the first smartphones to ship with Android 9 Pie out of the box, of course. Those two phones were announced last month, in October, and have been available in a number of regions for a while now. Those two devices did launch with a ton of bugs, it seems, as bug reports have been popping up like crazy over the last month or so. The Pixel 3 XL also received a lot of negative feedback due to its design, the device sports an extremely tall display notch, quite probably the tallest one out there, even though it's not as wide as on some other phones. Those two phones do have a lot to offer, but considering their price tag, the number of bugs that come with the package, and the design aspect, many sources are having a difficult time recommending them, even though they do offer really solid performance, and a great camera for low light, especially since Night Sight arrived.
The Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL are both made out of metal, for the most part, but they do sport a small glass panel on the back. Both devices feature a single camera on the back, which is backed by great camera software, which is able to pull out some really solid shots out of the two phones. Both devices feature a rear-facing fingerprint scanner, and both are fueled by the Snapdragon 845 64-bit octa-core processor. The Google Pixel 3 and 3 XL sport 4GB of RAM, and even though their display sizes are different, they both ship with OLED panels. These two phones are quite similar in general, other than the display and battery size, general footprint, and that notch that is included on the Pixel 3 XL. Both devices even ship with front-facing stereo speakers, though neither of the two offer a 3.5mm headphone jack… it is worth noting that a Type-C to 3.5mm dongle is included in the package, though, that goes for both phones.
Impact: The Google Pixel 3 and 3 XL will be amongst the first to receive Android Q next year, quite probably in October 2019, if Google ends up sticking to its release cycle. We should be able to get plenty of Android Q info during Google I/O in about six months though, while leaks are expected to start coming in a couple of months. Truth be said, not much Android Q info surfaced thus far, but we did spot one rather specific leak recently. That OS is rumored to support "Multi-Resume" feature which will let two apps run simultaneously, without pausing, and that will make the multi-window feature immensely more useful. To make things a bit clearer, this will allow you to run videos in both windows that you open on the display, for example, while at the moment, one video will pause if you fire up the other one. What happens is, Android basically pauses the secondary app that is opened, and lets you focus on using the primary one (the window you're currently using), but that will change in Android Q, it seems. Another report surfaced earlier this month, suggesting that Google may let users test Android Q before its AOSP release, which is also quite interesting, and it may give us more insight sooner than expected. That's probably it when it comes to Android Q, information is scarce at the moment, and chances are we won't have that much info anytime soon either. Some rumors / leaks may surface before Google I/O, but chances are they won't share much info about the OS itself. It remains to be seen whether Google plans to redesign the UI once again, as Android 9 Pie did bring a number of design changes to the table, which was not the case when we transitioned from Android 7.0 Nougat to Android 8.0 Oreo. Google seems to be pushing its navigation gestures, so we may see some improvement in that aspect when Android Q comes, as users are not exactly overjoyed with it at the moment. We're only guessing, though, of course, we'll have to wait and see what will happen.