Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL Launched; When AI Meets Hardware
After numerous leaks and rumours, Google has officially launched the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL at a special event in San Francisco.
Pixel 2 is the smaller of the devices, featuring a screen whose aspect ratio is the formerly standard 16:9. Pixel 2 XL, meanwhile, should have a six-inch, QHD+ display in an 18:9 aspect ratio, making it more competitive with this year’s other top-of-range handsets.
The Google Pixel 2 has a 5-inch display Full HD OLED Display. It is an always-on display, which means majority of your notifications are now more easily accessible. It also can listen to background music, and let you know which song is playing without sending any data back to Google. It basically acts like an offline Shazam.
While the Google Pixel 2 XL comes with a 6-inch OLED screen with a resolution of 1440×2880 pixels. The display is protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 5. It is powered by an octa-core Snapdragon 835 processor with 4GB of LPDDR4X RAM and 64GB of internal storage. The device is backed by a 3,520 mAh battery and weighs 175 grams.
A custom-designed Google imaging chip powers the cameras in both phones: An 8-megapixel f/2.4 aperture sensor on front, and a single-lens 12.3-megapixel rear f/1.8 aperture rear camera with optical image stabilization, phase detection autofocus, and high dynamic range (HDR). Google calls it the Pixel Camera. DxOMark has issued the Pixel 2 a staggering score of 98 according to Google.
One is an iPhone Portrait Mode-like bokeh mode that captures in-focus foregrounds and out-of-focus backgrounds. Another, Motion Photos, snaps seconds-long video clips before and after a picture is taken (think Apple’s Live Photos). And a third, Face Retouching, uses an algorithm to clean up blemishes and other skin imperfections in selfies.
The Pixel camera is also getting support for various augmented reality features — including AR stickers. You’ll be able to add 3D characters and emoji into photos and videos and see them move around as you’re capturing the scene. One of the headlining software features is certainly the debut of Google Lens, first announced back at Google I/O 2017 this May. Using the power of Assistant, Lens can detect what is in the real world around you and provide relevant search results and much more.
The two phones are quite similar, at least on paper: 4GB of RAM, either 64GB or 128GB of storage, and 12-megapixel primary rear cameras, along with front-firing stereo speakers. One of the surprising omissions from the first gen Pixel smartphones was the lack of protection from water and dust. Google has addressed this by adding IP67-level protection on the Pixel 2 and Pixel XL 2 this time. The new duo sadly are ditching the 3.5mm jack, they do come with an adapter in box though.
The fingerprint scanner is located on the back just like it’s predecessor. Just like the Note8 and V30, Pixel 2 supports Bluetooth 5.0 and also has integrated DAC for the best audio experience. Just like the HTC U11, you can squeeze the devices to start Google Assistant. Google says their experts have worked hard at detecting a natural hold vs intentional squeeze. Pixel users shall continue to get unlimited storage on Google Cloud for all the pictures and videos taken from the device.
The 64GB variant of Pixel 2 is starting at $649 (around ₹42,000), while Pixel 2 XL starts at $849 (around ₹55,000), pre-orders starting today.