Product Review: The Google Pixel 2 Power under 1k

google pixel 2 front back

Its Camera Makes up for the Rest

Today is the official release date for the new Google Pixel 2 Smartphone. There is Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL available both using Android Oreo’s Operating System. Google has put forth phenomenal effort in persuading users of Android’s mobile superiority but has failed to apply this to their own phones. You’ll be happy to know that their newest release doesn’t fall short of expectations and offers a unique mobile experience competing against their neighboring iPhone and the Galaxy.

First and foremost, the Pixel is priced competitively with the most affordable option starting at $649 and stretching to the max of $949. The prices are dictated by your desired ram size and whether or not you choose the XL. The XL is virtually the same but has a 6-inch screen (compared to 5)  with smoother resolution, pixel density, and longer battery power. Although Google’s prices may seem like a luxury for just a phone, they are less pricier than the Galaxy S8 at $929 and the iPhone X starting at $999.

The design is plain and bulky but the size enables front-facing audio monitors for maximum sound quality. It’s also water-resistant pressured-tested to safely sustain 28 minutes in a 3-foot body of water. The pixel also adopted pressure-sensitive sides that allow users to squeeze the phone to automatically launch Google Assistant. Also, the 835 processing speed makes the user experience lightning fast running neck and neck with its counterparts.

The phone’s layout now has”music detection” that can recognize songs playing in your environment and automatically display the song’s info on your lock-screen. Other than that, the homepage now has the search bar on the bottom rather than on the top.

When it comes to taking pictures, this is where the Pixel shines. Google stretched the aperture from f2.0 to f1.8 and HDR+ which optimizes the light distribution especially when outdoors. Their optical image stabilization (OIS) helps the images and videos appear less “shaky” which enhances the crisp transition of continuous movements. They also have their own Motion Pictures app that records 1.5-second long clip and loops it into a giphy-like image. The camera can also integrate with AR and comes complete with exclusive AR stickers.

The cons of Google’s latest asset range from its functionality to its performance. Google Lens, the latest camera-scanning AI assistant, needs some fine-tuning but is a fun tool to simplify info-gathering and contact building (when it works properly). Portrait mode could use some improvement as well. The phone’s battery life fell short of competitors and people are disappointed about no option for a headphone jack. Additionally, it won’t allow wireless charging and the design almost looks like it came out of the stone age.

Despite its quirks, the Pixel 2 is a great option and provides a distinct flavor from popular alternatives. It arguably has the best mobile camera on the market so once Lens and its portrait mode gets squared away, Pixel users can create a smartphone experience that is truly picture perfect.

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7 Price
8 Functionality
7 Design
10 Camera
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