[Update: Normal] Some Pixel 5 owners are reporting a gap between the display and the body

[Update: Normal] Some Pixel 5 owners are reporting a gap between the display and the body

Update 1 (11/04/2020 @ 06:56 AM ET): Google mentions that the gap on the Pixel 5 body is normal and should not affect the device. Scroll to the bottom for more information. The article as published on October 20, 2020, is preserved below.

Google’s latest flagship handset, the Pixel 5 has been due a potentially showstopping problem, and it looks like we may have found it in the form of a possible design flaw. Some users of the XDA Forums are amongst those who have complained that the glass display panel on their device doesn’t sit flush with the casing. The number of reports is growing steadily as more and more units reach their new owners, suggesting that the problem isn’t isolated—though we might add that it certainly doesn’t apply to every single handset sold.


Various photographs of phones sporting the unsightly gap suggest that it isn’t isolated to one specific point, but rather than there’s just not enough room to snap the two halves together, suggesting a millimetres wide mismatch between parts. It doesn’t seem to be limited to one color variant, nor does it seem to be a flaw that develops over time—most people have spotted it straight out of the box.

Image credits: XDA Senior Member superleeds27

The biggest concern here isn’t the functionality of the phone—they all seem to work perfectly—but it does bring into question the potential for ingress of dust and, more importantly, water. The Pixel 5 has been certified as IP68, which should mean that almost nothing gets in or out. Clearly, that’s not going to be true if there’s a whacking great hole in the casing.

We all know that most flagship phones have at least one boo-boo to overcome—but so do the manufacturers and the fact that this issue has been allowed as far as the end consumer leaves Google sporting a potentially very red face. Given the lukewarm reception and sales for the Pixel 4, the company needed for this launch to go flawlessly.

Google Pixel 5 Forums

We’ve asked Google for comment on the matter and will update this article once we have a statement.

Thanks for the tip, XDA Recognized Contributor TokedUp!
Featured image credits: XDA Junior Member Sylabo

Update: Google Pixel 5 body gap is said to be “normal part of design”

According to a response from Google over at the Pixel support forums, the gap seen on the Pixel 5 body is deemed to be a normal part of the design of the phone.

Hi Pixel Community,

We’ve had a chance to investigate units from customers and, combined with our quality control data from the factory, we can confirm that the variation in the clearance between the body and the display is a normal part of the design of your Pixel 5. There is no effect on the water and dust resistance or functionality of your phone. We will work with customers on an individual basis to address any concerns they may have.

While Google reassures that the phone should be unaffected even if you have a gap, they also mention that they will work with customers on a case-by-case basis. If the gap on your device is too large and worries you, it’s best that you approach the company for it.

About author

Chris Merriman
Chris Merriman

I am the UK News Editor at XDA Developers. I’ve been writing about technology for over a decade for the likes of The Inquirer, where I was Associate Editor, Computer Shopper UK, and IT Pro. I’ve also appeared on Sky News, BBC, Al Jazeera and recently left a long-running weekly tech news spot on TalkRadio UK. My love of technology comes from my family who hail from the pioneering days of Silicon Valley - in fact my Grandfather worked on Mercury, Gemini and Apollo. I’ve been using smartphones (and reading XDA) since the HTC Canary in 2003. I’m also a smart home obsessive. You can find me tweeting as @ChrisTheDJ.

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