The Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL were released in the U.S. on Thursday, and in the two days since then, more and more users have been registering complaints about the device, including several who claim that the device has a hard time running multiple apps at the same time.
According to a report from Android Police, the Pixel 3 and 3 XL appear to be unable to run “more than a few apps at a time,” a problem that might be related to the fact that the devices ship with only 4GB of RAM at a time when 6GB to 8GB RAM is considered the optimum amount of memory for a high-end phone. Based on the publication’s tests, some apps tend to quit when more than three or four apps are open simultaneously, with taking a photo apparently an intense enough task to force Spotify to quit while playing music. Android Police also pointed out how many users took to Reddit, Twitter, and the site’s own forums to complain about similar issues.
The memory allocation issues appear to date back to a few days prior to the Google Pixel 3 and 3 XL’s U.S. release. As noted by Android Police, an advance review from Android Central’s Daniel Bader revealed that music and podcast apps would close in the middle of playback and that some photos he took did not get saved afterward. The former bug was also experienced by Marques Brownlee, who demonstrated on YouTube how using the camera app could kill a music app in the background.
every time I criticize a bug or feature design on iOS, I often take for granted the kinds of things we NEVER see. https://t.co/DHLbBFIbth
— Kyle Seth Gray (@kylesethgray) October 19, 2018
Separately, The Verge reported that a number of Google Pixel 3 and 3 XL users reported not being able to save Google Camera photos, but added that the problem appears to occur on other Android phones, including the Pixel 2 and 2 XL, the Samsung Galaxy S9, and the Motorola Moto Z2. At the time of the report, users were suggesting workarounds, such as turning off Google Camera’s HDR feature or leaving the app open until HDR processing wraps up.
It remains to be determined if a lack of RAM is really behind the problems plaguing Google Pixel 3 and 3 XL, and as Android Police stressed, other users have reported a trouble-free experience so far. However, in a comparison test pitting the Pixel 3 XL and the OnePlus 6, which comes with 8GB RAM, Android Police founder Artem Russakovskii found that running Chrome, Google+, and Twitter simultaneously could force Chrome to quit due to a lack of memory. Conversely, Russakovskii noted that the OnePlus 6 was able to run twice as many apps without the same issue occurring.