Google has announced the highly anticipated Pixel smartphones. Like previous Pixel devices, the new smartphones are made by Google.
Google is now a hardware company. The Nexus lineup is gone, and the Pixel smartphones take their place as Google’s showcase for new Android versions. The new Pixel phones run the latest Android 7.1 Nougat.
Both Pixel and Pixel XL have very similar specifications. Only the display size, resolution and battery capacity are different, obviously. Both have an AMOLED display, Snapdragon 821 SoC, 4 GB of RAM and 32 or 128 GB of storage. The Pixel has a 5″ Full HD display as the XL gets a larger 5.5″ Quad HD display.
Google wanted to point five things that differentiate the new Pixel phones from the competition.
- Google Assistant. The Pixels are the first smartphones to ship with Google Assistant.
- Photography. The Pixels have the best smartphone camera of all. Tested by DxOMark
- Storage. The photo and video storage on these devices is unlimited, thanks to Google Photos
- Communications. The Pixels ship with Google Allo and Duo preinstalled.
- Virtual Reality. The Pixels are the first Google Daydream capable smartphones.
Personally, I’d say that the camera is the biggest feature of these. You can read the DxOMark camera review here. The new Pixel phones got the score of 89, one more than Galaxy S7, HTC 10 and Sony Xperia X Performance. The camera hardware isn’t all that impressive, 12.3 megapixel F/2.0 camera. No camera bump btw. However, Google compensates the average hardware with very clever and powerful software.
The HDR+ is now always on, as it has no shutter lag. Also, the camera and the camera app are the fastest to open and take a picture of any smartphone. Google’s algorithm chooses the best photo of all the photos taken with the Smartburst. You can check the camera quality from the DxOMark review linked above.
The Pixel phones will be available for preorders today in some markets, US for example. Google has teamed up with Verizon in the US but one can also get the phone from Google Store. More markets will join later. There are two basic colors available, Quite Black with black front and back and Very Silver with white front and silver back. The Verizon exclusive Really Blue is really really blue with white front. Prices start at $649 for the 32 GB Pixel.