Google appear its latest smartphones, the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL, on Oct. 9 at an accident in New York City. The brace of phones are identical in about every way, save for the affectation size.
Also: 10 affidavit the Galaxy Note 9 is bigger than the Google Pixel 3
As anon as the accident ended, Google began demography pre-orders for the phones, with deliveries and retail availability set for Oct. 18. I’ve had both accessories on duke for aloof over a week, and accept been application the Pixel 3 XL as my capital buzz aback it arrived.
In short, the Pixel 3 XL is the Android accessory to exhausted appropriate now. Plain and simple.
Read on for a added nuanced attending at Google’s latest smartphone.
Google’s Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL now affection an all-glass back, affective abroad from the metal apartment Google acclimated in antecedent bearing devices. But instead of giving up the Pixel’s two-tone look, Google acclimated two altered treatments on the aback glass, giving the basal allocation a matte finish.
The bottle aback not alone looks and feels nice in my hand, but it was additionally all-important in adjustment for Google to add wireless charging to the Pixel line. Any Qi-compatible wireless charging pad will assignment with the Pixel 3.
The Pixel 3 now has a 5.5-inch display, while the Pixel 3 XL has a 6.3-inch display… and a notch. I don’t apperception the agent at the top of the display, but should you appetite the beyond buzz and don’t like the notch, accumulate in apperception you can adumbrate it via a toggle in the Settings app.
Also: Pixel 3 vs. Pixel 2 vs. Pixel: Every spec, compared CNET
The Pixel 3 XL is about the aforementioned admeasurement as the iPhone XS Max and is adequate to use and hold. On the basal of the buzz is area the SIM calendar aperture is, aing to the USB-C charging port. The headphone jack isn’t authoritative a improvement on Google’s devices, but this year Google included a brace of USB-C headphones with the Pixel 3 XL.
The sleep/wake on and aggregate ons are begin on the appropriate ancillary of the phone, abrogation the larboard ancillary chargeless of any ons. The Pixel 3 XL comes in white, black, and “not pink” which, at atomic in photos, looks like a absolutely ablaze pink.
According to iFixit, Google switched to Samsung for the Pixel 3 XL’s OLED affectation — and it shows. The Pixel 2 XL’s awning was article a lot of users took affair due to aerial colors.
The Pixel 3 calendar looks actual abundant like a Google device, alone hardly added refined. The all-glass aback has a bendable feel to it. I’ve apparent letters that the bottle is calmly scratched, but if that’s absolutely the case, the white adaptation does a acceptable job of ambuscade those scratches. Added than actuality a fingerprint magnet, I can’t calmly acquisition a blemish on my analysis unit.
Indeed, the Pixel 3’s camera is absolute impressive. I’ve apparent annual proclaiming the Pixel 3 as the best camera in a smartphone your money can buy. And for the best part, it’s true.
The camera on the Pixel 3 is reliable, time afterwards time, capturing the photo I appetite afterwards activity like I accept to assignment for it.
Google’s adeptness to abide to advance the banned of what can be done with a distinct camera, back about every added smartphone maker is relying on two, still boggles my mind.
Portrait photos, area the absolute abstraction is to booty a photo area the accountable is in focus, while the accomplishments is blurry, is article that’s commonly aloof for committed cameras and big-ticket lenses. Over the accomplished few years, annual access has been added to about all smartphones, but the adeptness to accurately analyze the edges of the accountable and becloud alone what’s abaft it, application a distinct camera to abduction the photo and aggregate abyss advice as Google does, charcoal abundantly impressive.
I took a cardinal of annual photos with the Pixel 3 XL, but I anticipate the photos my aide Matthew Miller included in his arcade are prime examples of aloof how acceptable the Pixel 3’s camera is.
Also: A weekend with the Pixel 3 XL: The camera accepted its worth
In particular, this slide, area his daughter’s beard is agnate in blush to the chicken band in the background. I’ve apparent phones that accept absolutely adulterated a agnate shot.
Google added a lot of new modes and appearance to the Pixel 3 XL’s camera this year, but the one I’m attractive advanced to the most, Night Sight, isn’t accessible absolutely yet. The affection is advised to booty photos in low-light environments and application AI, charm the arena with able acknowledgment and colors afterwards acute the use of a flash. I cannot delay to analysis out this feature.
Other modes, including Photobooth and Top Attempt are nice additions, but not article I can see myself application often.
I anticipate the best arresting aspect of the Pixel band isn’t the camera. It’s the software as a whole. From actuality able to analyze real-world altar via Google Lens to Google Assistant’s affluence of creating morning routines.
During my time with the Pixel 3 XL, I’ve acclimated a “Good Morning” accepted that I set up in about two minutes. Afterwards alive my buzz and cogent Google Assistant, the claimed abettor begins by cogent me the accepted time, the day’s acclimate forecast, my calendar for the day, and again plays a abbreviate NPR new update.
The adverse of Apple’s access to a agnate action requires me to download and install addition app, Shortcuts, and apprentice how to allotment calm accomplishments through balloon and error.
As able as Shortcuts is for iOS users, it still requires users to assignment way too adamantine to accomplish article that’s calmly done on Android. Yes, Android, because the book I aloof categorical is accessible on all Android accessories that accept Google Assistant.
Also: Google Pixel 3: Cheat area TechRepublic
I alone began application it on the Pixel 3 XL because during the bureaucracy action for the Pixel Stand, a morning accepted was acclimated as an example.
The morning accepted affection is aloof one baby allotment of a addle that Google has been architecture with Android. Added pieces accommodate the Pixel’s Now Arena feature, area the buzz displays the song and artisan of music that’s arena about you on the lock screen, or the new Call Awning feature, or Acute Compose in Gmail, and the adeptness to about-face the Pixel 3 into a acute affectation back placed on a Pixel Stand.
Those features, forth with article as attenuate as canonizing that I accessible the Nest app anniversary morning afterwards I deathwatch up to acclimatize the temperature in my appointment and agreement it in my morning’s app suggestions, all amalgamate to actualize an acquaintance that’s at times decidedly delightful.
Android is a belvedere abounding of tailored experiences, bent by the aggregation who produces the buzz and the proprietary bark that goes aloft Google’s adaptable OS. Samsung’s bark has appear a continued way from the TouchWiz days, and OnePlus has consistently done a acceptable job of abacus aloof abundant to differentiate afterwards accepting in the way of Android as a whole.
But there’s article about the acquaintance that the Pixel provides — and it’s not “pure” or “vanilla” Android — but instead Google’s own proprietary acquaintance on top of Android, that’s absolute fun to use.
Battery activity and performance
Powering the Pixel 3 XL is Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 845 processor, 4GB of memory, 64GB or 128GB of storage, and a 3,430mAh battery. The Pixel 3 XL is IP68 rated, acceptation it can bear a accidental douse the basin or a bottle of beer.
Also: Pixel 3 XL vs. iPhone XS Max vs. Note 9 vs. LG V40: Specs showdown CNET
All those apparatus amalgamate for a bland acquaintance overall, with the barring of Snapchat. Afterwards advertence apathetic achievement in a few apps in my aboriginal impressions column beforehand this week, I did some analysis and begin that Snapchat is to blame. And that makes sense, as I’ve yet to acquaintance the aforementioned issues alfresco of that app.
Battery activity on the Pixel 3 XL has been added than abundant to get through a abounding day of use, which for me about starts at 6:15am and ends about 10 pm. Out of the scattering of canicule I’ve acclimated the Pixel 3 XL, it’s yet to absolutely cesspool the phone’s battery.
While the Pixel 3 XL will assignment with any Qi-compatible wireless charging pad, Google developed one of its own and is affairs it for $79. If you buy a Pixel 3, the Pixel Angle is a must.
What makes the Pixel Angle altered from added chargers is that, back your Pixel 3 is placed on the stand, the buzz turns into a baby Google Home Hub of sorts. A Google Abettor awning opens and offers up some commands to try. If you’d rather use your buzz as a agenda photo frame, you can set it to use photos from your Google Photos account.
Also: Google’s Pixel Angle accuse your buzz and wakes you CNET
After seeing my Pixel ablaze up with photos from a vacation with my kids a few years ago, I anon acquainted like I should accept Pixel Stands everywhere. The acquaintance is aloof too abundant fun.
With amazing software and solid hardware, the one catechism I can’t assume to acknowledgment is why Google continues to access into an absolute affiliation with Verizon Wireless as the alone carrier to action the Pixel band in the US.
Nearly every bartering or advertisement that I’ve apparent over the accomplished few years account the Pixel all affection a Verizon logo at some point. The consequence it leaves abeyant barter with is that you charge to be a Verizon chump in adjustment to buy one.
Of course, that’s aloof not the case. Anyone can buy an apart Pixel 3 or 3 XL anon from Google and use it on any carrier. I’ve been application the Pixel 3 XL on AT&T — with Wi-Fi calling, no beneath — during my testing.
As I declared at the top of this review, the Pixel 3 XL is the Android buzz to beat. Google delivers a complete acquaintance with the Pixel 3 XL. Array life, performance, the camera, and the baby software customizations are currently unmatched.
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