The Pixel 2 XL remains one of the more controversial flagship smartphones of 2017.
Early reviews of Google’s latest phone cited problems such as muted display colours, a blue colour shift when looking at the screen from an angle and more importantly, image retention, resulting in the navigation menu always being visible under specific conditions. While initially most assumed that these problems extended to all Pixel 2 XL devices, it seems that’s not actually the case, with new reports indicating the Pixel 2 XL’s various display issues are quality control related.
It turns out that not all Pixel 2 XL displays are experiencing the same issues, or at least not to the same degree. In a recent video, first spotted by The Verge’s Vlad Savov, YouTuber Jerome Ortega shows that his new Pixel 2 XL features warmer colours and less blue-shift when compared to a Pixel 2 XL that he purchased a few months earlier.
Backing up Ortega’s claim, Savov says that he also got his hands on a new Pixel 2 XL this past week, noting that the device features a “nearly total absence of blue color shift.”
The Verge says it has been able to confirm that Google hasn’t started sourcing the Pixel 2 XL’s screen from a new supplier, and that the device still features the same 6-inch OLED screen as when it launched. It’s unclear what caused the improvement, but it seems related to new quality control control measures implemented by Google, according to Savov. He also notes an XDA Developers thread discussing the Pixel 2 XL’s display issues, citing that some people are reporting display problems with devices manufactured in December, while the XL 2 he purchased was manufactured in October and isn’t isn’t flawed at all.
This makes sense given Google experienced other quality control-related problems with the Pixel 2 XL, including shipping the smartphone without an operating system and even in some cases, completely empty packaging.
The smartphone’s issues prompted Google to extend the Pixel 2 XL’s warranty by a year, though it remains unclear if the image retention problem is actually covered by the company’s extension. There was also the controversy surrounding the difference between image retention — a term Google carefully selected in a subsequent blog post addressing the problem — and standard screen burn-in.
Not all Pixel 2 XL displays are bad. Some lack the annoying blue shift. pic.twitter.com/p8RgkEbztF
— Vlad Savov (@vladsavov) January 15, 2018
The Pixel 2 XL at our office suffers from the widely reported muted colour pallet problem that was reported shortly after the smartphone’s release, though this issue was mitigated following the addition of new colour management options. The blueshift problem appears to be minimal. On the other hand, the image retention issue is present on our device as well.
It’s unclear exactly why some Pixel 2 XLs seem to feature better quality displays, but the issue definitely seems to be linked to quality control on some level.
What is the status of your Pixel 2 XL display? Is it experiencing issues or have you managed to win the lottery and got your hands on a solid device?