Google reveals the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL

Nathan Ingraham  Engadget

The combination of the tablet with a keyboard suggests Google could challenge both Apple's iPad line and Microsoft's Surface products. Your color options are Clearly White, Just Black and Not Pink. They flaunt Pixel's iconic two-tone design, which is defined by a soft-touch glass back that feels great in the hand.

The Pixel 3 XL starts at $1,129 CAD for the 64GB and $1,259 for the 128GB. When you take a photo, it analyses the images just before and just after you press the shutter, looking for those where everyone is smiling, with eyes open, and facing the camera. That way, you can decide whether or not you want to answer, or to ignore the caller.

The zoom is now aided by a Super Res Zoom feature, which uses computation photography from the world of astronomy and scientific imaging to provide sharper details when you're zooming.

The Hub is a Smart Display by Google that integrates Google Photos, a visual version of the Google Assistant, YouTube, and other services. With Night Sight, you can take bright, detailed, colourful shots around the campfire, in a moonlit forest, or a selfie as you're headed out of that dimly-lit club.

If you're more into self-portraits, there's another feature called Photobooth. With Portrait Mode updates, you'll be able to edit the depth of field, change the subject of focus, or use a "colour pop" option.

The new "XL" in the market is exactly what we have been expecting but then that was only on the hardware side of things. Both also allow you to control your smart home and make requests of Alexa.

What's surprising is how few new truly exciting features the Pixel 3 XL actually has.

The Pixel 3, priced at $799, and a larger Pixel 3 XL, priced at $899, mark Google's latest entries for a phone lineup it hopes will someday be as popular as Apple Inc's iPhone.

Verizon Wireless will remain the exclusive carrier for Google's new Pixels, which were unveiled at a media event in NY today.

Google's yearly hardware event launch is now over and the "Made by Google" brand of devices has now expanded. Now the Pixel 3 and the Pixel 3 XL are here to claim the title. Imagine you're at dinner with family or in a meeting at work and a call from an unknown caller comes in.

Pixel phones, though, have been a tougher sell, garnering less than 1 percent of the global market by shipments in Google's first two years of trying, according to research firm Strategy Analytics, and launching with glitches. Instead, the camera features a number of new software tools to help you capture better photographs more reliably.

With the Google Pixel Slate, unveiled on Tuesday, we finally know how Google is planning to light a fire under the now quite boring non-iOS tablet market. And, in the process, it gives you the opportunity to show anyone who would dare to disturb you with an actual phone call what you really think of them: Namely, that they're an annoyance.

The camera is probably one of the much talked about areas of the Pixel smartphones as they have been nailing it ever since the original Pixel came out. "The custom sound profile was developed for Pixel 3 by a Grammy award-winning music producer for stunning volume and clarity". That's significantly short of the capacity we're seeing in other flagship smartphones, and the fact it now supports wireless charging is no compensation. On Google's blog, the company called the Pixel 3 the "most helpful device in your life", pointing out that the Smart Assistant can answer while the phone is charging and that the camera is designed so that it "won't miss a shot". And there's also Flip to Shhh, which will mute notifications if you set the phone screen down.

Pixel 3 is IP68 water and dust resistant and has a security chip custom-designed by Google called Titan M, making it the most secure phone the company has built yet.

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