Pixel 3 security: Google details Titan M chip

Pixel 3 Pre-orders

Pixel 3 security: Google details Titan M chip

What are your thoughts on Google's proactive approach to security?

When Google revealed the data centre Titan chip a year ago, the Chocolate Factory said its goal was to provide a "hardware-verified boot and end-to-end authenticated root of trust" for its servers.

That hasn't slowed down iFixit from tearing down the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL to reveal all it can about the upcoming handsets. This prevents attackers from changing the security firmware without first unlocking your device. Thus the mobile version of Titan powers the Pixel 3's Verified Boot mechanism, helping the bootloader "make sure that you're running the right version of Android".

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Wrapping up its details, Google also says that it created Titan M with "insider attack resistance", namely the chip's firmware can't be updated without the device's passcode. "Within 4-6 weeks of your phone shipping, we'll send you an email letting you know when it's available to use (as long as you didn't cancel your order or return your Pixel 3)". On the other hand, Best Buy still has the phones up for pre-order only. Xin explains that with Android 9, apps can now take advantage of StrongBox KeyStore APIs to generate and store private keys in Titan M.

We were certainly intrigued upon getting the first word about the chip, going so far as to regard it as possibly even more exciting than the camera processor and maybe even lacking a rival of any kind on computing devices. Hopefully its partnership with Samsung proves to be a lucrative one, as many have already praised the crisp colour over the blue hue found on the Pixel 3's predecessor.

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