Part of the tech giant’s 2016 line-up, the Google Pixel boasts a premium price tag ($650 and up), with smooth performance and top-rated features to match. Discover how you can get the most out of your smartphone with Google’s latest addition to their mobile device collection.
With a 12.3 megapixel shooter, the camera takes impressive photos comparable to the iPhone 7 Plus. The camera action is super fast, which makes it easy to take close ups that are sharp and detailed. It also captures vibrant colors while keeping images in focus for fail-safe photography that looks great, even if you’re a beginner. In dim lighting, the camera does a decent job of capturing all the available light to brighten up the picture. Another plus is its ability to capture a sense of depth and detail at long distances, which is great for taking landscape shots.
Other photo modes include lens blur, which focuses on the object in the foreground while blurring the background and making the focal point stand out even more. An effective way to use this feature is to select lens blur and slowly raise the phone while keeping the object centered. Follow the slider that appears on the screen and slide it all the way up to capture the picture. Tap the shutter icon, wait a moment for processing and editing, and get ready to see your striking results.
Using the Pixel’s impressive processing power, the slow motion effect is created from a rapid reuptake of videos. To create a slow motion video, go to the Camera app and select the “Slow Motion” mode. There are several options for the filming speed, including x1/2 for the lowest, x1/4 for medium, and x1/8 for the highest. For the best slow motion results, x1/8 is the recommended setting.
Similar to camera apps found on Nexus, LG, and Samsung, Google Pixel’s Photo Sphere is a 360-degree panorama function that lets you take immersive pictures and share them online.
The Panorama mode is another camera function on Pixel that is great for capturing large, sweeping landscapes. Simply open the Camera app and tap ‘Menu.’ A list of modes will appear, including ‘Panorama.’ Tap and choose Horizontal, Vertical, Wide-angle for a wide arc, or Fisheye. Tap the Capture button and use a series of gray dots to align and process the images. When you’re finished, see the results by tapping on the image in the corner of the screen.
Its front-facing camera features a wide angle lens, which is ideal for fitting a lot of objects, like smiling faces and stunning landscapes, into each frame. The camera software also does a good job of softening skin tones without looking unnatural or filtered. The Pixel also features a 4K video function with a gyroscope and software to keep the camera steady, which is especially useful when you’re recording on the go.
Another key feature of the Pixel is the Google Assistant, which accesses Google’s vast search engine database to answer questions, get directions, and find places to eat. Unlike other voice-activated software such as Amazon’s Alexa or Google Now, it uses an advanced conversational interface that responds more effectively to natural speaking. It also utilizes a learn-as-you-go approach, which makes the function become more personalized the more you use it.
Allo, Google’s messaging service, and Duo, the video-calling app, also come built-in with the option of uninstalling. The phone also features a long-press function comparable to Apple’s 3D Touch that allows the user to apply pressure to the screen and pull up more menu options on an app, which creates a handy launcher shortcut. Another function is the Google Keyboard, which makes it easy to send GIFs from your phone.
Along with its new features, the Pixel also has a Night Life setting that helps to reduce eyestrain by automatically changing the bright bluish display to a yellow tinted one at night.
When it comes to added security, the Google Pixel really shines, especially with its fingerprint reader on the back, which works fast and can be used for services like Android Pay. You can also use this sensor to slide down notifications on the screen.
The Pixel is easy to navigate with its straightforward layout. Unlike the iPhone, it doesn’t have a home button, just the power and volume buttons. If a lot of your services are web-based like Google Drive and Google Play, you will find it very user-friendly.
Made in a sleek one-piece aluminum design, the Google Pixel is a more streamlined and elegant design than to last season’s Nexus devices. The weight is also just right—not too heavy or clunky and not too thin and hollow. The high-grade materials won’t scratch easily while the matte metal finish and glossy panel creates a striking contrast that makes the Pixel unique.
Google Pixel at a Glance:
Network Speed: 4G LTE
Processor: 1.6GHzz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 821
Operating System: Android Nougat
Internal storage: 32GB
Wi-Fi standards supported: 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac
Bluetooth: Yes, v 4.20
SIM Type: Nano-SIM
Front Camera: 8-megapixel
Battery Capacity: 2770mAh
Release Date: October 2016
Weight (g): 143
Colors: Very Silver, Quite Black, Really Blue
Screen Size: 5.00-inch touchscreen display with a resolution of 1080 pixels by 1920 Pixels at a PPI of 441 pixels per inch
As with any new device or technology, there is always room for improvement, but Google Pixel is well on its way to outshining its predecessors and the latest iPhones with its streamlined functionality, easy-to-use features, and elegant yet sturdy design.