At its “Made by Google” event in San Francisco, Google Inc. unveiled a wide array of hardware including its latest smartphones, named the Pixel and Pixel XL.
For months the rumors have been making the rounds regarding what we could expect from Google. While rumors suggested the devices would be made by HTC Corp., no mention was made at the event. Rather Google emphasized that the Pixel smartphones were “designed and built by Google,” with the only branding visible being the “G” logo. However, Jeff Gordon, senior global online communications manager at HTC, confirmed to phoneArena that “HTC is Google’s manufacturing partner for the Pixel.”
We look at how the larger Google Pixel XL compares to the other phablets on the market, including Android options: the Samsung Galaxy Note7 and LG V20, as well as Apple’s latest flagship: the iPhone 7 Plus.
Google Pixel XL vs. iPhone 7 Plus vs. Samsung Galaxy Note7 vs. LG V20: Tech specs
|iPhone 7 Plus||Galaxy Note7|
Android 7.1 Nougat
|iOS10||Android 6.0.1, Marshmallow|
Android 7.0 Nougat
5.5-inch Quad HD AMOLED
2.5D Corning Gorilla Glass 4 on the front display and back glass
|5.5-inch, Retina HD display||5.7-inch Quad HD Dual edge Super AMOLED|
Corning Gorilla Glass 5
5.7 inch, Quad HD IPS LCD (main display)
2,560 x 1,440 (534 ppi)
|1,920 x 1,080 (401ppi)||2560 x 1440 (518ppi)|
Main: 2,560 x 1,440 (513 ppi)
Secondary: 160 x 1,040 (513 ppi)
2.15GHz + 1.6GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 821
|Apple A10 chip (64-bit)||2.15GHz + 1.6GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapgradon 820 processor OR|
Exynos 8890 Octa-Core, Mali-T880 MP12 GPU (outside U.S.)
Qualcomm Snapdragon 820
|32, 128, 256GB||64GB|
|No||Yes, up to 256GB|
Yes, up to 2TB
Rear: 12.3-megapixel, f/2.0
Front: 8-megapixel, f/2.4
|Rear: Dual-camera 12-megapixel wide-angle and telephoto cameras, f/1.8 and f/2.8Front: 7-megapixel, f/2.2||Rear: Dual Pixel 12-megapixel, f/1.7, OIS Front: 5-megapixel, f/1.7|
Rear: Dual cameras, 16-megapixel f/1.8 and 8-megapixel f/2.4
Front: 5-megapixel, f/1.9
|Dimensions & weight|
154.72 x 75.74 x 8.58mm (at its thickest), 168 g
|158.2 x 77.9 x 7.3mm, 188g||153.5 x 73.9 x 7.9mm, 169g|
159.7 x 78.1 x 7.6mm, weight unknown
|Size not available, but up to 21 hours talk time, 16 hours standby, 13 hours LTE||3,500mAh, non-removable, Fast Charging on wired and wireless|
Yes, 7 hours in 15 mins
|No||Yes, plus wireless charging|
Quick Charge 3.0
Yes, on the back cover
|Yes, built into the new Home button||Yes, on the Home button, plus an iris scanner|
|Yes (IP67)||Yes (IP68)|
|Availability & Price|
Available for preorder.
|32GB: $769; 128GB: $869;|
|Starting at $834|
Preorders start on Oct. 21
Across the board, smartphone manufacturers are looking to step up the game when it comes to camera technology. Both Apple Inc. and LG Electronics Inc. launched dual cameras with the recent launch of its iPhone 7 Plus and LG V20.
While Google hasn’t opted for a dual camera, its Pixel camera is the highest rated smartphone camera according to DXOMark. The Pixel camera has received a DxOMark Mobile score of 89, knocking the HTC 10, Samsung Galaxy S7 edge and Sony Xperia X Performance off the top spot.
“Google intelligently amped up their camera message as consumers care about this a lot. The 89 rating on DXOMark is impressive and using a gyroscope to compensate for video jitter is unique. I’m surprised Google didn’t opt for two cameras as it’s rapidly becoming standard on premium phones,” said Patrick Moorhead founder, president and principal analyst at Moor Insights & Strategy.
Both the Pixel and the Pixel XL come with a 12.3MP camera, featuring a f/2.0 aperture and 1.55 micron pixels, ensuring the capture of a lot of light. On the front, you get an 8MP camera with f/2.4 aperture, 1.4 µm pixels, and Full HD video capture (30fps).
The Smartburst feature is great for action shots and will take a rapid-fire sequence of photos and choose the best one. Lens Blur allows the photographer to achieve shallow depth of field and bokeh effects.
Google is also offering Pixel owners free unlimited storage for original quality photos and videos at full resolution in Google Photos.
The Pixel smartphones are also the first phones to come with Google Assistant built-in. The digital personal assistant, which gets smarter the more you use it, will be able to provide you with a brief update of your day, play a video on YouTube, or a song on Spotify. Google Assistant can provide traffic updates on your drive home, business closing hours, find your favorite photos, and more.
Price and availability
The Google Pixel is available now for preorder in the U.S., U.K., Canada, Germany and Australia. In the U.S. it is exclusively available through Verizon Wireless and Best Buy stores, with an unlocked version available on the Google Store.
At Google’s event, the company also launched the Daydream View VR headset and the Pixel smartphones are the first Daydream-ready phones. If you preorder the Pixel you will also receive a promo code for the Daydream View VR headset.
The 32GB Pixel XL will cost $769 while the 128GB will cost $869, putting it on par with the new iPhone 7 Plus.
Images via Google