Due to numerous leaks, it feels like there’s little left to know about Google’s smartphone plans. However, after leaks of the Pixel 3 Lite, we’re beginning to hear rumors about the Pixel 4, specifically improved dual SIM support.
Before we jump into it, though, it’s worth reflecting on the history of dual sim in Pixel devices. With the Pixel line, Google launched the eSIM Project Fi, which gives users data on three mobile networks and switches between them intelligently.
The service has proven hugely popular in the US, but the phones don’t support a technology called Dual Sim Single Standby (DSSS). This means Pixel users can’t use one sim for data and another inactive sim for texts and calls.
The Upcoming Support
It seems that may change with the Pixel 4. Commits on the AOSP Gerrit indicate that Google is prepping support for a dual SIM mode in Android Q.
“Add property value to indicate support for dual SIM mode. Add system property to different devices that support enablement of dual SIM mode from those that don’t, even if they have two or more SIM cards,” reads the page.
Then, in a commit, Google software engineer Michele Berionne says:
“This boolean will be set to true in 2019 devices by default. The boolean is required to differentiate 2018 Pixel (which has 2 SIM cards, but dual SIM functionality is restricted to dog fooding) from 2019 Pixel (which will have dual SIM functionality).”
This could bring the Pixel 4 in line with iPhones, supporting eSIM and SIM in dual standby. DSSS requires another antenna, but Dual SIM Dual Standby (DSDS) may be possible in older Pixel devices if Google enables it. This would let users receive calls and texts on either SIM, but not use them at the same time.
In other news, a benchmark for the may Pixel Lite have surfaced online. Geekbench reveals a device with an octa-core Qualcomm chip at 1.8GHz. However, it’s paired with just 2GB, which contrasts previous leaks.