Today is the launch of the Pixel 2. Probably the biggest phone release of the year so far, unless you count the iPhoneX later in the year. Reading many pre-launch reviews, a lot of people are saying it’s a dull looking phone who’s selling points lie within.
Personally I think its looks are great and the build quality a clear step up from any Nexus phone I’ve used. The question is though is it worth shelling out for a Pixel 2 on top of what you already own.
Looking at the above graph, many stats look almost identical, but the devil is in the detail.
The latest Snapdragon processor is the snappiest yet, loading any app up very quickly and google search in blink of an eye. A noticeable step up from the Nexus era, which whilst still quite quick, often didn’t have the top end SoC inside.
Coming from an original Pixel, speed is probably not going to be a selling point, neither is RAM, since it comes with the same 4GB as last time. What’s going to swing it for Pixel fans, will be the camera and software features.
Looking at the graph again, Pixel 2 has a drop in the sensors pixel size. This isn’t usually a good thing. The larger the pixels, the more light can be absorbed and therefore better quality image. However the Pixel 2 rear camera has a wider F1.8 aperture which should counteract the reduced pixel size, letting in more light. It also has a new trick up its sleeve with the sensor, that no other camera has done before.
Each effective pixel has a twin, making this a dual pixel sensor. Each twin assesses the light and compares results. This makes for a more accurate result than one pixel alone. Not only this, but each result from the twin pixels produce a slight left and right angle. This means another algorithm can create a 3D map of the scene and work out depth. This allows it to automatically blur out the background in Portrait mode for a more professional look. Mix this feature with Googles AI learning of faces and objects and it can work out exactly what should be sharp and in focus. This produces very impressive results, so much so that DxO has given a benchmark result of 98/100, the highest score for any smartphone.
Using the new Google phone I can confirm that whilst its dimensions are almost identical to the Nexus 5x, its build quality is a big step up, as is its performance, plus the AMOLED screen looks stunning. If you’re coming from the original Pixel, then all your interest should be in its software update, seeing features such as Active Edge and Google Lens that can only be seen on the latest device.