Google has finally pulled the wrappers off its new Pixel smartphones. Following weeks of speculation and leaks, the Pixel 2 and Pixel XL 2 promise to showcase the best of Android.
The Pixel 2 is built for Google by HTC and features a 5–inch AMOLED screen with Full HD resolution.
The larger Pixel XL 2, made by LG, comes with a 6-inch brighter, QHD+screen featuring a 2560 x 1440 resolution.
While the smaller Pixel 2 inevitably features a smaller 2,700 mAh battery compared with the whopping 3,520 mAh effort found in the Pixel XL 2, both devices come with virtually identical spec sheets.
Google made a point of focusing on this during its launch event, pointing towards Apple’s decision to offer improved functionality in its larger iPhone 8 Plus compared with the standard-sized iPhone 8.
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It means that each phone comes with a 12.2-megapixel camera including optical image stabilisation (OIS) and a wide f1.8 aperture.
It’s a single-lens shooter, but uses Google’s software smarts to ensure it works as well as dual-lens cameras found on rival handsets.
Portrait Mode can be found on the front and rear cameras, too.
Squeeze the sides of either the Pixel 2 or Pixel XL 2 and Google Assistant will fire up.
The virtual assistant can also resume playback of a song or podcast and bring up satnav directions when you tell it you’re driving home. Android Oreo comes as standard.
Throw in a Shazam–like feature that can suss out what song you’re listening to while out and about and Google’s new devices have enough about them to ensure they’ll get plenty of critical acclaim.
In a major break, neither the Pixel 2 or Pixel Xl 2 come with a 3.5mm headphone slot. A dongle to attach analogue headphones is included in the box.
Google has also launched Pixel Buds, wireless headphones that can access Google Assistant and translate languages in real time.
A 64GB Pixel 2 costs £629 to buy outright, rising to £729 for 128GB. The Pixel XL 2 will set you back £799 for a 64GB edition and £899 for 128GB.
Pre–orders are open now, although the Pixel XL 2 may take up to six weeks to ship, with the Pixel 2 shipping 17th October.
Anyone who does pre–order will also get a Google Home Mini smart speaker for no extra charge.