Google insists Pixel 5’s ‘display gap’ is totally normal, don’t worry

Google Pixel 5
(Image credit: Future)

After consumers reported a gap between the screen and the phone’s metal body on their Google Pixel 5 handsets, the company has clarified that, yes, this is an intentional part of the design and that it will not impact its IP68 water or dust resistance.

The issue first appeared on XDA forums in mid-October, when user Sylabo first brought the issue to light, showing images of their new Pixel 5 and the visible gap between screen and phone body:

Google Pixel 5

(Image credit: XDA Developers / Sylabo)

A Google support thread sprang up a day later, which recently got a response from an official Google specialist who confirmed that, after investigation, the ‘clearance between the body and the display is a normal part of the design of your Pixel 5.’ But if customers are concerned, Google will work with them on an individual basis.

The actual gaps in question are easier to see in person than in photos, several forum posters explained, but some images reveal a slight but visible space between the edge of the metal frame and the rounded edge of the screen, like this one from Google forums user Andy Richardson 6598.

None of the users have reported any damage from water or dust due to the gaps, though other commenters state not having gaps at all, suggesting production differences.

No damage yet, to be clear

Nobody has reported damage to their Pixel 5 devices yet, and in our review experience, we did not notice said gap until checking our unit against the aforementioned photos. 

We did notice uneven height on the camera block, which so far hasn't affected the phone. But user Refreshed on the same Google support thread had an identical issue and commented that they'd exchanged their phone anyway. 

Hardware issues are new for the Pixel line – previous issues have mostly been with the phone's software, like the Pixel 4's face unlock troubles and display color variations in the Pixel 2 XL that Google attempted to fix with software tweaks.

Via The Verge

David Lumb

David is now a mobile reporter at Cnet. Formerly Mobile Editor, US for TechRadar, he covered phones, tablets, and wearables. He still thinks the iPhone 4 is the best-looking smartphone ever made. He's most interested in technology, gaming and culture – and where they overlap and change our lives. His current beat explores how our on-the-go existence is affected by new gadgets, carrier coverage expansions, and corporate strategy shifts.