The Pixel 5 has been a controversial phone for Google, sacrificing some flagship gloss in exchange for a lower price. Starting back with the Pixel 2, Google's phones have had some of the best haptics available, and it looked like the Pixel 5 would continue that tradition. While it does for the most part, there's one minor quirk that's starting to drive us a little crazy.

As one of our readers tipped us off to, there's a small hiss or click at the end of every vibration that, once heard, cannot be unheard. Sure enough, we pulled out a Pixel 5 and a Pixel 4 to do some comparisons:

The Pixel 5 making the noise (left), the much quieter Pixel 4 (right)

As you can hear, that faint clicking on the 5 happens after every single vibration —it isn't the testing app that's responsible, either, and we confirmed the noise's presence during regular phone use. This app makes it easier to show on video by controlling when the phone vibrates, nothing more. It's noticeable on its own, but when compared to the Pixel 4, it becomes painfully obvious.

This's isn't a deal-breaking issue, but Pixels have been known for their exceptional haptic performance. This flaw, small as it is, is still extremely annoying once you've noticed it — it's like the first small chip in a brand-new car's paint. Most people will never notice it's there, but it stands out like a sore thumb to the owner.

Hopefully, this is a simple problem that can be fixed with a software patch. We'll keep this page updated with any further developments on this issue.

  • Thanks:
  • Sergey Lipman