Enlarge / The Pixel 8. (credit: Google)

Google’s June Android update is out, and it’s bringing a few notable changes for Pixel phones. The most interesting is that the Pixel 8a, Pixel 8 and Pixel 8 Pro are all getting DisplayPort Alt Mode capabilities via their USB-C ports. This means you can go from USB-C to DisplayPort and plug right into a TV or monitor. This has been rumored forever and landed in some of the Android Betas earlier, but now it’s finally shipping out to production.

The Pixel 8’s initial display support is just a mirrored mode. You can either get an awkward vertical phone in the middle of your wide-screen display or turn the phone sideways and get a more reasonable layout. You could see it being useful for videos or presentations. It would be nice if it could do more.

Alongside this year-plus of display port rumors has been a steady drum beat (again) for an Android desktop mode. Google has been playing around with this idea since Android 7.0 in 2016. In 2019, we were told it was just a development testing project, and it never shipped to any real devices. Work around Android’s desktop mode has been heating up, though, so maybe a second swing at this idea will result in an actual product.

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