GOOGLE’S FIRST attempt at a ‘pure play’ Android device was its Nexus line where it partnered with a variety of handset manufacturers. The Pixel is the next chapter – Made by Google, and we’ve enjoyed the ride ever since it began two years ago. Last year’s Pixel 2 was unmatched on planet Android for its seamless hardware and software experience; it also shot stunning images. This year’s Pixel 3 siblings aim to take it to the next level. There’s the 5.5-inch Pixel 3 and the 6.3-inch Pixel 3XL that we’re putting the spotlight on.
WE’VE SAID THIS BEFORE, THE PIXEL is for the hipster. This is not for the attention seeker but a ‘sorted’ guy who doesn’t let his phone to do the talking. It’s why the design language is more elegant than in-your-face. We totally dig the two-tone approach and you’re likely to find quite a few gentlemen opt for the new ‘not pink’ colour that joins the black-and-white colour options. It’s all-glass, although it doesn’t look or feel as slippery as the competition and it’s geared for wireless charging. It feels lighter in your hand compared to the Note 9 and the iPhone XS Max.
FORGET THE HARDWARE SPEC SHEET, this phone is a sheer joy to use. We love how the Snapdragon 845 processor and 4GB of RAM provide the perfect engine for Android 9.0 and keeps things chugging along effortlessly. It blazed through our tests and aced our gaming challenges. The 3430 mAh battery delivers acceptable battery life. There’s no internal memory (like the Note 9) and the top-end 128GB variant pales vis-à-vis the 512GB versions on the XS Max and Note 9. But Google is betting big on Google Photos with free, unlimited cloud storage for all your images.
YOU’RE LIKELY TO PUT THIS CAMERA ON overdrive. There’s no dual cam on the rear but the Pixel 3 manages a 2X zoom and also produces stunning bokeh images, a trick we first saw on last year’s Pixel 2 and one that we will soon see on the iPhone XR. Videos are sharper than the Pixel 2 and low-light images are quite remarkable; the Pixel 3 is clearly the smartphone cam to beat this year. It’s the same with the dual selfie cam 8 MP + 8 MP) that shoots terrific selfie portraits. The playground mode is one of the coolest AR tweaks we’ve seen on any phone this year and allows you to add a whole host of characters (Ironman included) into your images.
It's the most vibrant you will see in any smartphone.All your content looks sharp on the 6.3 in P-OLED display (1440x2960 pixels/523 PPI) and the stereo speakers add to its immersive appeal.
Android Pie: 5 cool new features we dig
Here are 5 cool new features we dig
The newest iteration of Android is more than just a paint job; it’s one of the biggest OS updates we’ve seen. The new Pixel is one of the ‘hero devices’ for Android 9.0 but it will soon start debuting on a Android smartphones too. Here are a few cool new tweaks you can check out.
GESTURE NAVIGATION Android’s 3-button navigation button hasn’t changed much. Pie replaces the Back, Home and Recent buttons with a new gesture-based navigation system that is more in tune with the hardware configuration of newer devices that don’t sport the physical home key.
ADAPTIVE BATTERY AND BRIGHTNESS Backed with AI, this feature lets your phone learn your usage patterns and adjusts battery consumption accordingly.
APP ‘ACTIONS’ AND SLICES The ‘intelligent’ launcher predicts apps you are likely to use depending on where you are and the time of day.
IMPROVED VOLUME CONTROLS Hitting the volume buttons only impacts the media volume and not the ringer volume like before. The volume menu now shows up as a slider on the right of the screen (instead of the top).