Amidst a very detailed leak ahead of the actual announcement, Google finally unveiled its new “phone by Google.” The new Pixel smartphones represent the best in hardware and software, made by the search company with the help of HTC.
Google Pixel and Pixel XL
As Google unveiled its new Pixel smartphone, the search company got rid of its Nexus branding. The new flagships come with premium chops in two sizes, the 5-inch Pixel and the 5.5-inch Pixel XL.
The two have similar designs and share the same metal unibody build. Save for the screen size, display resolution and battery capacity, the rest of what makes the Pixel a Pixel are the same. Both Pixels sport a quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 MSM8996 processor, an Adreno 530 graphics chip and 4GB of RAM. The 5-inch model offers a full HD AMOLED display and a 2,770 mAh battery with fast charging, while the 5.5-inch model boasts a quad HD AMOLED display and a larger battery.
Both Pixels pack a 12.3 MP main camera that, at the time of writing, boasts a “best ever” 89 DxOMark Mobile score. It has a large 1/2.3 inch sensor, a wide f/2.0 aperture, and phase detection and laser detection autofocus. The front camera uses an 8MP sensor with an f/2.0 aperture and a 1/3.2 inch sensor.
One of the more interesting features of the new Pixel smartphones is the search company’s AI-powered virtual Google Assistant. It is activated by touching and holding the home button or by saying a “hot word.” You can use it to issue voice commands and it works in a way like Siri, where there is a two-way dialog happening between the assistant and the user. So far, this service is only available on the Pixel.
The Pixel also comes with Google’s new launcher, aptly named Pixel Launcher. It is somewhat of a redesign of the Google Now Launcher. Instead of the search bar on top, you now have a Google pill widget and the date. The app drawer button is gone, but it can still be accessed via swiping up from the dock. The app drawer itself also changed. This is also exclusive to the Pixel so far, but you can install it via side loading. Do a quick Google search if you want to check it out.
Google Pixel Key Specs:
- 5.00-inch Full HD AMOLED Display (1080 x 1920; 441 ppi)
- Dimensions: 5.6 x 2.7 x 0.2 inches
- 2,770 mAh battery w/ Fast Charging (up to 7 hours from 15 minutes charging)
Google Pixel XL Key Specs:
- 5.5-inch Quad HD AMOLED Display (1440 x 2560; 534 ppi)
- Dimensions: 6.0 x 2.9 x 0.2 inches
- 3,450 mAh battery w/ Fast Charging (up to 7 hours from 15 minutes charging)
Tech Specs for Both Devices:
- 2.5D Corning Gorilla Glass 4
- Quad-core 2+2 Kryo 2.15GHz / 1.6GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 MSM8996
- Adreno 530 GPU
- 4GB LPDDR4 RAM
- 32GB / 128GB Storage (No SD Card Slot)
- 12.3 MP Main Camera with f/2.0, PDAF + LDAF, 1/2.3 inch sensor size, 1.55um pixel
- 8 MP Front Camera with f/2.0, 1/3.2 inch sensor, 1.4um pixel
- Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac
- Bluetooth v4.2, A2DP, LE
- GPS with A-GPS, GLONASS
- Pixel Imprint Fingerprint Sensor
- USB Type-C Port (USB 3.0)
- Android 7.0 Nougat
- Colors: Blue, Silver, Black
This is probably where we all start to wince. The Google Pixel, available for preorder in the US, is a bit pricey. It starts at USD 649 (around PHP32,000+) for the 5-inch model, and USD 769 (around PHP38,000) for the XL 5.5-inch. And maybe it deserves it. It has a premium new unibody build, packs one of the best cameras on a mobile phone, and runs stock Android.