Tuesday, 20 November, 2018

Google Pixel 3, Pixel 3 XL: Unboxing And First Impressions

Pixel 3 launch: Google to unveil iPhone challenger and smart home hub Google unveils new Pixel smartphone at 10 media events around the world
Cecil Davis | 10 October, 2018, 08:23

Alongside the standard Google Pixel 3, the Google Pixel 3 XL has also just been announced, and it's this phone that's Google's real flagship for the year, just as the Google Pixel 2 XL was for 2017. If you have smart security cameras or doorbells installed, you can view the feed on the Home Hub. While a welcome addition, it's really not something new and, as some long-time Android owners may remember, a feature that used to be part of some older Android phones.

Despite initial rumours and leaks at the beginning of the year suggesting Google is working on a Pixel Watch, it's now looking unlikely that we'll see it at today's event.

From left - the Google HomeHub, Pixel Slate tablet and Pixel 3 phone.

In the case of both phones, there's a single-lens rear camera near the top, while the fingerprint scanner sits lower down.

That's not all - this year you can also count on even more assistance across apps, including Gmail's Smart Compose, now available for mobile on Pixel 3. But this new feature goes further, letting you get more information before you pick up a call from a questionable number. Both phones still have front-facing speakers, but the Pixel 3 XL's are supposedly 40% louder and richer. There is also a USB-C to 3.5mm adapter that consumes less power. That's going to be excellent for price conscious consumers, but keep in mind that you're not going to get stellar productivity from a Celeron CPU with 4GB of RAM in 2018. It comes in black or white, with green and pink options available exclusively on Google's online store. The Pixel 3 phone has a 5.5-inch display and the Pixel 3 XL has a display size of 6.3 inches.

It will be offered in dark blue colour and features a touchscreen with a possible aspect ratio of 3:2. Google introduced a ton of new features, nearly all related to the camera. Storage also tops out at the same amount, namely 128GB.

The hardware is exactly what you'd expect. Powered by Android 9 Pie, Pixel 3 comes with the latest Android operating system.

Google unveils Pixel 3 and Pixel XL
Aside from that, and the obvious size differences, you won't find a lot of disparity between the two devices' aesthetics. In addition to tweaking the depth of field, you can even select a different focus point after the photo is captured.

The version of Android they run is as Google intended, since these are Google phones, but they also both have some features you won't find on other handsets, such as Active Edge, which lets you squeeze the sides to launch Google Assistant.

Nearly all the technical details of the phones had been leaked before the event, but Google did unveil some clever new software features.

After months of leaks and rumors, Google has finally, officially unveiled the Pixel 3 phone.

With Live Albums, you just select the people or pets you want to see and Google Photos will automatically create a new album with all the photos you've ever taken of them. Gboard, the keyboard built into your Pixel 3, will recommend GIFs, stickers and more, to make your conversations fun and engaging. Whether or not you're a user of Google+, the fact that the company made a decision to withhold the information should give you pause, and force you to consider if you can depend on Google to notify you if or when even more serious data breaches occur. There's plenty of powerful hardware on offer here, finished off with Google's signature style.

One of the biggest differences present this year is the fact the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL support wireless charging. Starting today, anyone who buys one 64GB Google Pixel 3 will get a second device for free.

The Pixel 3 is priced at $799/€849 for the 64GB model and $899/€949 if you want double the storage. Strangely, Verizon charges more for the Pixel 3 XL if purchased directly from the carrier-it's $930 or $38.74 per month. And if you happen to be taking a selfie video while walking or moving around, Pixel 3 brings you front-facing video stabilisation.