Google is investigating reports of Pixel 2 XL screen burn-in

23 Oct 2017

Google’s Mountain View offices. Image: Boom Chu’s/Shutterstock

Some users of Google’s Pixel 2 XL are reporting display issues.

Google launched its recent suite of hardware to much fanfare, with products offered ranging from home assistants to earbuds. The smartphones – Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL – were the major draw, touted as the pinnacle for Android-powered mobile devices.

Google Pixel 2 XL burn-in

While the phones do boast a plethora of cool features, including a HDR+ processing chip, some users of the Pixel 2 XL are reporting issues.

According to specialist website Android Central, after being in use for around a week, the Pixel 2 XL has been exhibiting signs of screen burn-in, where part of the display has the same features for long enough that a ghost image of it remains even if you navigate to another window – for example, the navigation menu is visibly settled into the display but, in other instances, screen elements such as the clock can also remain.

What is visible in the tweet could also be another phenomenon called ‘image retention’, which is also known as ‘ghosting’. This usually dissipates whereas screen burn-in is a permanent flaw in the handset.

Google is looking into the problem

According to Fortune, the Pixel 2 XL’s POLED (plastic organic light-emitting diode) screen is made by LG, while the Pixel 2’s 5in model screen is a Samsung creation.

Google stated it is looking into the problem: “The Pixel 2 XL screen has been designed with an advanced POLED technology, including QHD+ resolution, wide colour gamut, and high contrast ratio for natural and beautiful colours and renderings. We put all of our products through extensive quality testing before launch and in the manufacturing of every unit. We are actively investigating this report.”

If the problem is widespread, it would raise questions about the POLED technology from LG. While screen burn-in is a commonplace issue, for it to arise mere weeks after use of what is ostensibly one of the best Android phones on the market is a cause for concern.

It could, however, just be a bad batch of models – a problem that can be resolved quickly with repairs, replacements or refunds from Google.

Google’s Mountain View offices. Image: Boom Chu’s/Shutterstock

Ellen Tannam was a journalist with Silicon Republic, covering all manner of business and tech subjects