Google have announced their new smartphones flagship devices the Pixel and Pixel XL. The devices are the first to launch under a name other than Nexus. Google have emphasised it’s manufacturing partnership with Nexus means that they are joining software and hardware so the devices will have the best possible Google experience.
The phones themselves have a clear resemblance to iPhone. They are available in three colours quite black, very silver and really blue. The very silver, in particular, seeing to have a very close resemblance. Like the Nexus models, the fingerprint sensor is located on the back of the device on the Pixel unusual Gorilla glass back panel.
Pixel will have a 5-inch full HD (1,920 x 1,080) display and a larger phone, the Pixel XL, will have a 5.5-inch Quad HD (2,560 x 1,440) screen. Both phones will be powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 processor with 4GB of RAM and both models will have either 32GB or 128GB of internal storage but without a micro SD slot for expansion.
Pixel phones will run the latest Android Nougat 7.1 the latest version of the Google mobile OS.
The claim made that these phones will have the best camera ever is yet to be rigorously put to the test by first-hand reviews. On first look, it does seem impressive with good performance in low light, fast shutter times and an ability to handle movement in initial tryouts.
Both phones have a 12.3-megapixel f/2.0 aperture camera on the back with optical image stabilisation and an 8-megapixel front-facing camera on the front.
Google have said the cameras have zero shutter lag and scored an 89, the highest DxO camera rating for any smartphone camera.
As an added bonus the phones will come with an unlimited amount of photo and video storage at full resolution without the regular Google Photos storage at 16mb meaning Pixel and Pixel XL users will not need to pay for a monthly storage plan to use 4K. What's more, the new Smartburst feature will take multiple versions on the same photo and select the best with powerful new AI capabilities.
Google Assistant is another star attraction to these phones and has a feel to it like using a better version of Google Now. Google have since confirmed that Google now is to be included into the Google Assistant.
Google Assistant will offer the information you would normally just Google like news and sports information as well as accessing personal information like travel plans and reservations which an excellent ability to handle follow-up questions. A key difference between the Assistant and Now is that queries are structured more like a conversation and Assistant will prompt users with shortcuts to related queries.
Comparisons have been made between Google Assistant on Allo in that how it works but the Pixel and Pixel XL have the added advantages that assistant features feel more integrated into the working of the phone allowing users to manage apps and settings from Assistant.