During the event Made by Google 2018 held in New York today, the big G has finally unveiled the new Pixel smartphone. This is how we at TecHLecToR were able to take a close look at the new Pixel 3 devices, as powerful as they were innovative, but they were not the only ones.
The event opened with the words of Rick Osterloh, SVP Hardware at Google, who spoke to us about the latest solutions conceived by his company in an effort to constantly improve the lives of all users, starting from the simplest tasks foreseen by the routine daily. ‘AI + Software + Hardware,’ this is the latest philosophy of the IT giant.
In this context, the new entries in the Pixel range will make a great contribution.
Google Home Hub
Home Hub represents in all respects the natural evolution of the already known Google Home products. “Now, imagine not just listening to a message, but also being able to see an answer. This is the power of Google Home Hub”, Diya Jolly has perfectly summarized the true purpose of the new device dedicated to the smart home.
After working hard on all the possible functions to be integrated into the display, Google has created an experience that can adapt to the needs of every type of user. The absence of a front-facing camera was completely intentional, says Grande G, in order to guarantee the total privacy of the user who can thus use Google Home Hub even in the most intimate environments.
As we can see from the different presentations on the Big Apple stage, Home Hub is a device designed to be used in any room in the house. We start from the kitchen, with the ability to follow practical recipes from the display of Google Home Hub, and move on to the living room, where you can watch a YouTube video in the company of friends, using the powerful integrated speaker.
About YouTube: Anyone who decides to purchase Home Hub will have access to a 6-month subscription to YouTube Premium – which includes full access to YouTube Music.
Each smart device in our home can be managed through Home View, a real dashboard through which to control each gadget. There is also the integration of Google Photos, which thanks to Live Albums will encourage users to use Home Hub as a digital frame on which to view their photos and show them to friends and relatives.
Finally, Diya Jolly reveals to us prices and availability of Google Home Hub: only $ 149, with pre-orders available today. The launch will take place on October 22 in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia.
Rick Osterloh is back on the stage of the Made by Google 2018 to open a parenthesis on Chrome OS. To date, the platform has fueled the acclaimed Pixelbook, focusing on simplicity and speed. These same keywords will lay the foundations for the latest arrivals: the Pixel Slate.
Osterloh passes the baton to Trond Wuellner, who will show us how this new tablet works. “It is not a laptop that tries to be a tablet or a phone that tries to be a computer or a tablet that is actually a phone that tries to be a computer,” in short, a great tongue twister that even seems to conceal a little arrow to Apple iPads.
Speaking of serious things, Pixel Slate will mount a 293ppi display (6 million pixels). We are not talking about a simple screen, but an LTPS panel (Low-Temperature Polycrystalline Silicon), which will offer significantly reduced response times and brighter colors.
On the sound front, we find two front speakers, ideal for listening to our music at full volume or to reproduce, even in this case, videos from the boundless YouTube library. And even on the purchase of Pixel Slate, there is a small bonus: 3 months of YouTube Premium.
Returning briefly to the hardware, there is also a front camera designed for video chat. This incorporates wide-angle lenses and larger sensors to allow clearly visible video calls even in low light conditions.
We then move on to the software, to Chrome OS, to be precise. The launcher has been redesigned and, thanks to machine learning, can now suggest the apps you need by placing them on the top of the screen. Google Assistant also intervenes, which will have even deeper integration with Chrome OS and that on Pixel Slate offers a wider interface than on Pixelbooks.
The security of the device will be guaranteed by the Titan chip, which will ensure anti-virus protection, automatic updates and a higher level of protection.
Users who want to work with Pixel Slate will be able to use the Slate Keyboard, which can be connected via the connectors on the bottom of the tablet. The Pixel Slate Keyboard will be sold at a suggested price of $ 199 and will be flanked by the Pixelbook Pen ($ 99)
Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL
Here comes the turn of Liza Ma and Brian Rakowski to get on the stage and to introduce us to the pot of Google’s keynote: “Finally, it’s time to talk about the phone!”. A phone that can respond on its own, a further evolved camera and an unreleased recharge experience. These are the three basic steps that will guide us to the discovery of the new Pixel 3.
There will be three colors of the smartphone of the big G: Black, White, and Pink. On the front of Pixel 3, we find a 5.5-inch screen, while Pixel 3 XL will mount a larger 6.3 “ panel. On the edge-to-edge screen, there is the inevitable notch, which frames the front chamber. The speakers will have a volume higher than 40% and a richer sound; even here you can take advantage of YouTube Music, thanks to a free 6 month subscription.
The workhorse of the Pixel 3 could only be the camera, as you could guess from the new partnership of Google close with the famous photographer to Annie Leibovitz – who used a Pixel 3 to give us incredible shots.
We are talking about the HDR +, technology for which Google has declared itself the only company to “use this method” – will you forget Apple? By integrating the Visual Core Pixel chip, the phone will offer the new feature “Best Shot” (Top Shot) based on the AI: alternative photos will be taken in HDR +, among which only the best one will be suggested. Then there will be the high definition Zoom, the Night photomode, Group Selfie – for 184% more space in the photo for the framed subjects – and Seize the moment, which will identify any smiles or funny expressions to instantly snap a photo.
We could not miss the Portrait mode, made famous by Google Pixels, which will allow us to change the background blur or choose what to focus after taking the picture. It will complete the Playground feature, with which you can add animated stickers and funny subtitles to our images and videos; here the Marvel superheroes will come into play, exclusively on Pixel.
Regarding the videos we can use the Focus in motion feature to automatically maintain the focus on the subject being recorded; video stabilization will also be performed on images recorded with the front camera.
We had mentioned a new charging experience, the one ensured by the new Pixel Stand. It is a wireless charger that will allow us to recharge the phone and, at the same time, to take advantage of the features of Google Assistant. So we can ask questions, play our music and control smart home devices, all without having to remove the Pixel 3 from charging.
Google Pixel 3 is already available for pre-order on the Google store and will be available from next November 2, always within the official e-shop. The 5.5-inch Pixel 3 model will be launched in 64GB and 128GB formats, at the respective prices of 899 euros and 999 euros; also Pixel 3 XL will have two versions, at 999 euros (64GB) and 1099 euros (128GB).
The Pixel Stand will be sold at the recommended price of 79 euros. We will find a wide range of accessories: from the original covers (in 4 colors) to 45 euros to the personalized My Cover from 50 euros, ending with the Earbuds earphones for Google Pixel (USB-C) separately purchased for 35 euros.