The Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL are now official, so what’s new? We take a look at all the new specs, features
Google just announced its third installment of Pixel phones; the Pixel 3 and the Pixel 3 XL. As expected, the phones are more or less what we’ve seen in the multitude of leaks that have appeared online during the past few months.
I know you’re eager to see what’s new with these phones, so here’s a quick break down of the specs for both handsets:
Yeah, kinda… Google’s still loving the bezels a bit too much for our tastes, but both handsets do look and feel vastly better than last year’s models.
The Pixel 3 XL is where most of the big design changes have taken place; the bezels are a lot smaller and there’s now a notch (because you gotta have a notch).
Size-wise, the phones are pretty similar to last year’s models. Google has likely found a sweet spot in the market with its little and large combo, and if that ain’t broke then why bother fixing it?
Neither handset rocks a dual-camera on the back; both instead use Google’s excellent imaging AI to create the same effect. Again, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
Where things get a little tastier is on the front of the handsets; both feature two front-facing cameras, which creates a super-wide-angle image. This makes it ideal for selfies (and provides a death knell for selfie sticks).
Capture smiles not blinks: A feature we call Top Shot uses AI to help you capture the perfect photo every time. When you take a motion photo, it captures alternate shots in HDR+, then recommends the best one—even if it’s not exactly when you hit the shutter—looking for those where everyone is smiling, with eyes open, and facing the camera.
Get better zoom: When you zoom in on a phone camera, the image looks grainy. Super Res Zoom is a computational photography technique, traditionally used for astronomy and scientific imaging, that produces sharp details when you zoom.
No light; no problem: Pixel 3 lets you take natural-looking photos in dark surroundings, all without a flash. With Night Sight, coming soon to Pixel 3, you can take bright, detailed, colorful shots around the campfire, in a moonlit forest, or after you close out the bar.
No selfie stick required: Get everyone in the picture with Group Selfie, which gives you 184 percent more room in your photo for friends and scenery.
Look … no hands! Photobooth mode uses AI to recognize that when you’re smiling or making a funny expression, you’re ready for a selfie. It snaps the photo on its own so you don’t need to reach for the shutter button—a good option for candids.
Even more stunning portraits, front and back: When you take photos in Portrait Mode, you can change the blurriness of the background, or change the part of the picture in focus, after the fact. Google Photos can also make the subject of your photo pop by leaving them in color, while changing the background to black and white.
Create and play: In Playground, you can make photos, selfies and videos come to life by adding your favorite superheroes, animated stickers and fun captions. In celebration of Marvel Studios’ 10 Year Anniversary, you’ll enjoy seeing the characters from the Marvel Cinematic Universe (exclusively on Pixel) react to each other and to you. New packs for Weather, Pets, Sports and Signs let you have everyday fun, and coming later this year, you'll be able to sharpen your dance skills with moves from Childish Gambino.
Super smooth video: When you want to capture something that won’t stop moving—think an adorable toddler or your new puppy—Motion Auto Focus will make sure your Pixel 3 camera stays in sharp focus automatically, as you record. And if you happen to be taking a selfie video while walking or moving around, Pixel 3 brings you front-facing video stabilization.
Both handsets will run Android Pie, obviously. And you’re looking at one of the best looking implementations of Android we’ve seen to date. Everything is very fresh, flat, and appealing.
You also get FAST wireless charging too:
"Pixel 3 comes with an 18 Watt fast charger in the box," said Google", which can give you seven hours of use in 15 minutes of charging. With our AI-powered Adaptive Battery technique, Pixel 3 prioritizes battery power for your most important apps to make your phone last all day."
Beyond this, Google Assistant has been heavily updated in order to make it more useful. Things like the ability to monitor and block spam/scam callers is a godsend and something a lot of people will appreciate.
Google Pixel 3 Price & Release Date
The Pixel 3 will be available from now on pre-order (Verizon) and it’ll get a general release on October 18 via Verizon, Google’s Project Fi, and also inside the Google Play Store.
Prices start at $799 for the Pixel 3 and $899 for the Pixel 3 XL – add an extra $100 if you want the 128GB versions.