Google earlier today, officially took covers off its much awaited “Pixel” phones at an event in San Francisco. The venue was also witness to a bunch of of other new devices that included the Google WiFi router, Google Chromecast Ultra, and Google Dreamview VR. In this article, however, we will focus on the two new Google Pixel smartphones – the Pixel XL and the Pixel. As you may have guessed by now, Google Pixel is the evolution of Google’s Nexus series smartphones that have been around since the Google Nexus One was announced back in 2010. Just like its Nexus series, the Google Pixel smartphones too, run the “pure” version of Google’s Android operating system. This time, however, Google does claim that the devices have been designed “under one roof,” although the fact remains that the Pixel is made by Google’s longtime partner, HTC.
Now that we are done with the introduction, let’s get down to business and talk about each of these devices, separately. Note that both the phones do get some common specifications as well which we will talk about later.
Google Pixel Specifications
We start off with the “normal” Google Pixel which is the smaller of the two handsets. The Google Pixel boasts of a 5-inch, full-HD, AMOLED display with a PPI density of 441. The device also features a mildly curved 2.5D Corning Gorilla Glass 4. While not the thinnest phone around, the Google Pixel is not very bulky either with the device being 8.5 mm thin at its thickest. The smaller Google Pixel smartphone gets a 2,770 mAh battery that claims to offer up to 19 days of standby time on LTE networks and 26 hours on 3G, It also claims 13 hours of internet usage time on both Wi-Fi and LTE. Video playback, too, has been rated for 13 hours. The phone does support fast charging and will charge for more than 7 hours of usage in just 15 minutes of charging.
Google Pixel XL Specifications
As made evident by its name, the Google Pixel XL is the larger screened version of the Google Pixel. The Pixel XL gets a larger, 5.5- inch, Quad HD display which means it offers an ultra high PPI density of 534. Like its smaller sibling, the Pixel XL, too, gets a 2.5D Corning Gorilla Glass 4 layer at on the display for scratch protection. Even though it is larger than the Pixel, it is the same thickness measuring just 8.5mm at its thickest. Due to the larger size of the device, Google (HTC, rather) has managed to cram in a higher capacity battery, rated for 3,450 mAh on the Google Pixel XL. The larger battery offers up to 23 days of standby time on LTE networks, up to 32 hours on 3G. Internet usage time on both Wi-Fi and LTE is pegged at 14 hours. The phone can also play videos for up to 14 hours. Like its smaller sibling, the Google Pixel XL too gets fast charging and can be used for more than 7 hours after 15 minutes of fast charging.
Being from the same family, both the Google Pixel and the Google Pixel XL feature quite a few common features. Let’s now see what those are.
We start off with the design. One look at both the devices and you will note that both the devices do look quite similar to each other. In fact, the Google Pixel XL looks like a stretched version of the Pixel. Both of them feature a metal unibody design and come in two color options.
Both the phones are powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 (MSM8996) Quad Core 2+2 Kryo processor and feature 4GB of LPDDR4 RAM as well. Both the devices come in two variants – one with 32GB of storage and a higher priced version that gets 128GB of onboard storage space. While the display sizes differ, both the displays offer 100 percent NTSC color gamut and boast of a 100000:1, super contrast ratio. 32 or 128GB
As for the camera, Google has already gone on to claim that the cameras on the Pixel phones take the best pictures ever – which mind you, is a very tall claim. Both the devices feature a 12.3-megapixel main camera and uses Sony’s IMX378 sensor with support for Phase Detection Auto Focus as well as Laser Auto Focus. The f/2.0 aperture does mean you get decent low light shots.
The front camera uses an 8-megapixel IMX179 sensor with and gets an f/2.4 aperture lens. Strangely, unlike most other high-end smartphones out there, the Pixel uses a fixed focus camera at the front! The main camera is capable of 4K video recording at 30 fps. The main camera also supports the following resolutions for video recording.
- 1080p @ 30fps, 60fps, 120fps
- 720p @ 30fps, 60fps, 240fps
Like any self-respecting Android phone from 2016, the Google Pixel gets the Pixel Imprint which is just a fancy name for a back-mounted fingerprint sensor. The phone uses a USB Type-C port for charging and data transfer – and yes, there is a separate 3.5mm audio jack – just in case you were wondering.
Both the handsets are single SIM devices and support up to CAT 11 LTE (600Mbps DL / 75Mbps UL) depending upon carrier coverage and carrier rollouts.
As expected, both the phones run the newest version of Android – version 7.0 Nougat. It also comes preloaded with Google Assistant and the new apps Google Duo and Allo.
When and How to buy
The Google Pixel and the Pixel XL comes in two color options; Very Silver and Quite Black. There is a U.S. centric limited edition variant as well which is blue in color. The devices will also be launched along with a bunch of new cases that are highly customizable. Both the devices are available for pre-order starting today in the U.S., U.K., Canada, Germany, and Australia. The starting price of the device is $649 in the U.S. In India, pre-orders start October 13.
So, are you getting one?
[Featured Image by Google Pixel]