With Apple recently announcing new iPhones, it’s no surprise that Google has followed close behind with a competing offer. At Google’s launch event yesterday, the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL were announced, along with a few snide remarks at Apple’s expense.
The first Pixel phone was revealed a year ago to put Android power up against iOS, and this year, Google’s continuing the rivalry. As Apple released three new phones at their last event, Google is hoping that the two Pixel versions will make Apple advocates think twice before they buy.
The Pixel 2 has a 5 inch OLED screen while the Pixel 2 XL comes in at 6 inches, confirming that bigger phones with larger screens and thinner bezels are going to be gaining popularity in the coming years.
Both Google Pixel phones also have an aluminum body, glass back, water resistance, better battery life, and the (controversial) elimination of the headphone jack — features similar to the newest iPhones.
There are a few features that are unique to the Pixel, however. Google Assistant is supposedly better this time around and can be launched by squeezing the edges of the phone, which is a fun albeit gimmicky feature. The Pixels also have At a Glance display for information like calendar events and Always On lockscreen for notifications even when the screen is on sleep.
Additionally, the Pixel phones only have one camera as opposed to the iPhone 8 Plus’s dual camera system, but the cameras also include enhancements like optical image stabilization and Portrait Mode to make it just as appealing.
One thing that really sets these Google phones apart in the photography category is unlimited Google Drive storage for pictures and videos. The ability to have endless free storage will undoubtedly be attractive to consumers comparing cameras before buying.
The Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL will also be the first phones to include the Google Lens software that was introduced at Google I/O. Through the phones’ cameras, Google Lens will be able to identify real-life elements and gather information about them to display to the user. Google Lens has a lot of promise in the world of AI, but it’ll be interesting to see how successful it will be in the eyes of customers upon release.
The Google Pixel 2 starts at $649, while the Pixel 2 XL will cost $849 for the least amount of storage at 64GB – that’s still $150 less than the iPhone X which will cost you $999 for the same GB. Both the Google Pixel 2 and 2 XL are available for pre-order now and will be available in stores by October 19.
In addition to the two newest phones, Google also released a few other products including Home Mini, Home Max, Pixelbook, Daydream View, Clips, and probably the most interesting addition to the product line, Pixel Buds, which can translate 40 languages in real-time directly to your ear.
Of course, what we’re really all wondering is which will be better — the iPhone X or Pixel 2 XL? Consumers are divided with their opinions, but only release dates will tell.