What’s in a name? Depending on the context, it could mean the world, or it could mean nothing. A number denoting the generation or model of a smartphone can be critical, but, depending on how it’s used, a “Pro” and an “XL” could mean the same thing anyway. That is the dichotomy that fans of Google’s Pixel phones now find themselves in after the company itself accidentally revealed that the larger and potentially better-equipped Pixel 6 could be called the Pixel 6 XL after all.
On the one hand, that isn’t really surprising considering Google’s naming convention for Pixel phones from day one. It has always used “XL” to denote the larger of two models of the same generation, at least for those that do have a larger model in the first place (Google skipped the Pixel 5 XL). Since the Pixel 4a, 5, and 4a XL, however, Google’s branding scheme seems to have gone out of the window.
Leaks about the Pixel 6 duo so far called the larger and better model as the Pixel 6 Pro, and that name seems to have stuck. In a form set up by Google regarding the upcoming Game Mode interventions for developers, it casually mentions the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 XL by name. Google quickly removed that particular text, but not before XDA had the chance to save it for posterity.
Of course, it could have just been a slip-up or a typo, though Google’s removal of the text feels almost like an implied confirmation. It could also be a red herring, though, and the company doesn’t shy from using such strategies to build up hype over its products or events.
A Pixel 6 XL by any other name would still sound Pro, anyway, with its larger 6.71-inch P-OLED screen, 12GB of RAM, and three cameras on its back. Most people will probably be curious about the unique design of the and, more importantly, the Google-designed “Whitechapel” processor. Sadly, there is still no firm word on when the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro/XL will be announced, but most are betting on Google returning to its regular October schedule.