Why Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL is the iPhone 8 of the Android world?

| October 7, 2017 | Reply

The moment came when Google was wrong to be called only a software company or an Internet giant. Now it massively produces physical, tangible products, and is very determined in this area. The announcement of smartphones Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL hardly forced competitors to strain, but fans of top-end smartphones should be delighted.

What happened?

Last night Google made a big announcement and introduced two new smartphones in the Pixel lineup , as well as a laptop , a small smart camera, an updated VR helmet for Google Daydream , several smart home speakers, a stylus and futuristic wireless headphones with simultaneous interpretation from one language another. The idea of ​​the Babylonian fishes from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy is finally embodied in reality. In any case, at the presentation, the Pixel Buds headset translated the speech from Swedish into English without any problems and vice versa. However, now we are most interested in smartphones Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL.

Rumors about the development of the second generation of Google smartphones went a long time, but in general from Google, no one expected anything special. And even I rather expected that I would have to write a column in the spirit of “How Google once again tried to surprise us, but again I could not.” In fact, everything was not so bad. For example, Pixel 2 boasts fashionable portrait mode shooting with a single main camera, although for them, as we previously thought, the second camera is absolutely necessary.

What’s outside?

I would call the design of both Pixel 2 very discreet and practical. The glossy insert on the back panel, which was often scolded by the first Google Pixel, remained in place, but either this element has already become familiar, or something has changed in Google, but it looks more pleasant. Pixel 2 will be available in three colors – black, white and light blue. And exactly the same range is provided for all related accessories, including a Pixel Buds headset. Fans Pixel 2 XL choice will be more modest – the device is available only in black and black and white colors.

The frame around the screen in Pixel 2 XL is relatively small – something in between the Samsung Galaxy S8 and the iPhone 8 Plus. And the top and bottom indents are slightly wider, but this is due to the presence of two powerful speakers, otherwise they would simply not fit. The younger model, strangely enough, the frame is even thicker – here the 5-inch display occupies 67.9% of the front panel area, and the 6-inch Pixel 2 XL screen – 76.4%. In both cases, an OLED matrix is ​​used, though with different resolutions: Pixel 2 has 1280 × 1920 pixels, Pixel 2 XL has 1440 × 2880 pixels. And one more interesting detail – the corners of the screen in the larger model are neatly rounded, this is clearly visible from the picture on the screen, and for a smaller model the display is traditionally rectangular.

Thanks to the OLED display, you can use the Always On Display feature without any noticeable effect on battery life. The same thing we have long been offering and smartphones Samsung, but Google this time gives a little more useful information. I’ll tell you about one unique chip below.

The bad news is that the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL do not have a 3.5mm headphone jack. Google also believes that it’s time to mass transition to Bluetooth-listening. However, for fans of wired headphones in the kit will be an adapter with USB Type-C on the mini-jack. Wireless charging is still not supported, but it will definitely be fast charging. However, it is not yet clear whether the QuickCharge adapter will be bundled as HTC U11, or it will need to be purchased separately, as in the case of the Sony Xperia XZ1.

You probably noticed that Pixel 2 does not have any controls on the front panel, but the second generation of these smartphones inherited the reception of the recent HTC U11. The side faces are sensitive to compression, and the compression of the case is started by Google Assistant. The flagship HTC similar action launched the camera and took pictures, and I very much hope that Google will allow you to assign any convenient function. For me personally, all these clever helpers are completely useless, and quick access to the camera or to notes will never interfere.

What’s inside?

Pixel uses Qualcomm’s well-known Snapdragon 835 platform with an eight-core CPU, an Adreno 540 graphics chip, but there is relatively little RAM on the smartphone – only 4 GB in total. Galaxy S8, Galaxy Note 8 and even many Chinese flagships have long offered 6 GB of RAM. But the internal memory of Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL will be 64 or 128 GB. The expansion slot is not provided, but to compensate for this inconvenience, Google offers lifelong storage of all photos and videos for Pixel owners in the cloud. So it’s possible to live with the available memory, but since the company so obviously imitates Apple, why not offer us an option for 256 GB, albeit for additional money?

Original Google Pixel and Pixel XL are still at the top positions in the ratings of the best mobile cameras, so this time the company approached the cameras very seriously. Simultaneously with the announcement, the rating of DxO Mark was updated. In it, firstly, appeared Galaxy Note 8, which is estimated as high as the iPhone 8 Plus. And secondly, the rating has a new leader, and this is Pixel 2 with a 12-megapixel camera.

By the way, in both “Pixels” only one main camera, but Google managed to implement the same portrait mode, as in the iPhone 8 Plus. At the official presentation, the company even said that for this second camera is not needed at all. Well, the more interesting will be the comparative testing.

What else?

In the camera application there will be a separate button, Google Lens – it will allow you to recognize objects in the photo using artificial intelligence. Approximately the same thing does Samsung Bixby – however, there is still no practical benefit from this. Perhaps, in the case of Pixel 2, the function will work more accurately. But much more useful will be the ability to quickly translate the inscriptions that fall into the camera lens. Such a function already exists in the Google Translate mobile application, but in Pixel 2 it can be accessed directly from the camera application.

Another interesting feature is the automatic recognition of music. Do not put Shazam or SoundHound – the smartphone recognizes the songs in the standby mode and displays the relevant information on the screen in the Always On mode.

Well, the main thing that distinguishes Google’s smartphones on the background of all other Android-smartphones is the operative output of OS updates and the long support of old models. In this regard, now no one can compare with Apple, and with the tubes of individual companies (we will not show fingers), firmware with new versions of Android have to wait for years. Already released Android 8.0, and many smartphones have not yet received the firmware from Android 7.0.

When and for how much?

Google has already started accepting pre-orders for Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL, although now they can only be issued by residents of six countries: Australia, Canada, Germany, India, the United States and Great Britain. Officially, the sale starts on October 19.

The price, as always, is a controversial issue. In the US, for Pixel 2 with 64 GB of memory, they ask for $ 650, and for twice as much, you’ll have to pay another hundred – $ 750. Pixel 2 XL will cost 850 and 950 dollars, respectively. So the main competitors of the new Google smartphones will be the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus. And if the transition to Samsung for many iPhone users can be painful, then Google Pixel 2 already now looks more natural alternative.

Category: Mobile, Technology

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