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Google seems to be working on new Pixel Buds, per FCC

Two new devices have arrived for FCC certification, and they look a lot like a new set of Google Pixel Buds.

While second-generation Pixel Buds were “Made by Google” through and through, the original 2018 headset was listed under the FCC identifier for Weifang Goertek Electronics. This week, two devices from Weifang Goertek Electronics passed through the FCC with the model numbers “GPQY2” and “G7YPJ.” These model numbers follow the style of Google’s own devices since Nest Audio’s “GXCA6” number.

So what are these mystery devices then? The only wireless bands they are registered for are exactly the same Bluetooth sites used by last year̵

7;s Google Pixel Buds – which also had two separate FCC lists, one for left and right earbuds. In a piece of paperwork, it was made clear that these devices are too small for their FCC information to be printed on the hardware itself.

What really cements for us that these two FCC listings are most likely for some different Pixel Buds, is that each device’s dimensions are listed deep inside the papers. These dimensions – 27 x 20 x 15 mm – are almost exactly the same as the Pixel Buds we have today, as can be seen in the FCC archiving from the older devices.

Knowing that this is almost certainly Pixel Buds of some kind, what can we guess about Google’s next earplugs from these FCC listings? The most important treat we have seen is that Google can try to solve the somewhat frequent disconnection problems with the current Pixel Buds. While these new Pixel Buds use exactly the same Bluetooth bands as the current generation, the power output is significantly higher – 8mW / 16mW in 2020 Pixel Buds versus 13.24mW / 19.82mW on this new model. This should help increase signal strength, and reduce the likelihood of disconnections.

As for where these new Pixel Buds fit into the Made by Google series, one theory is that Google may be preparing an advanced successor to the Pixel Buds with features such as noise reduction, but it also feels a little early for Google to replace last year’s model.

Alternatively, during a recent episode of Alphabet Scoop, we assumed that the Pixel Buds line was ripe for a reasonably priced variant, similar to how the Pixel 3a and Pixel 4a gave the best of their flagship counterpart for less. As of today, neither Samsung nor Apple have genuine wireless earbuds in that quality, yet affordable range, with only OnePlus Buds Z and companies like Anker competing.

Supporting this theory, the FCC’s limited confidentiality period for submitted images of these new Pixel Buds expires in mid-September, weeks before the regular Made by Google fall launch. Instead, we are more likely to see a launch in the middle of the year, as Pixel 3a and Pixel 4a both experienced. This potential timing could put these new Pixel Buds on the shelves side by side with the expected Pixel 5a.

For now, it’s hard to say for sure what these next Pixel Buds may have in store. In the meantime, what would you rather see from Google later this year: an advanced “Pixel Buds Pro” with noise reduction or something affordable like “Pixel Buds a” earplugs? Let us know in the comments!

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