Speakers have been an integral part of smartphones since the beginning. Razer's concept Project Linda even uses the speakers from the Razer Phone to power the faux laptop's audio system. But what if Google's next Pixel phone didn't even have speakers? What if it didn't need them in the first place?
At some point in 2017, Google quietly bought a UK Tech Startup called Redux. The purchase was so low-key that we're not entirely sure when it went down, but Crunchbase speculates that the deal was finalized in August 2017.
Redux "developed technology that eliminates the need for small speakers in mobile phones." Without speakers, Google could use the space for more screen real estate, a bigger battery, or a headphone jack — something the Pixel 2 lacked.
Redux had another key piece of smartphone tech that could be used for a more focused haptic feedback engine. Their technology has been said to make on-screen buttons feel almost as if they're real, tactile buttons. A good implementation of this could rival Apple Touch ID, which uses its unique Taptic Engine to provide different home button feedback.
There's been no confirmation that Google plans to use either of these technologies in their Pixel phones, but it's the only logical explanation for the purchase. Both of Redux's key innovations would find a perfect home in the Pixel 3 if Google could incorporate them in time for a fall 2018 release.