Ignore even more phone calls with Google's 'call screen' feature

In a year of same-old smartphones, Google is pitching one that's sexy on the inside.

The Pixel 3 and 3 XL have been unveiled as part of the Made by Google event in NY and London. Imagine you're at dinner with family or in a meeting at work and a call from an unknown caller comes in.

Google's homegrown smartphone hardly challenges the status quo all-screen, jumbo-sized designs from Apple and Samsung. The front and rear of the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL are protected by Gorilla Glass 5.

Google Pixel 3 XL: What else is new? The company made it clear that this year the changes wouldn't be driven through hardware only. You can swipe down from the top-left corner of the screen to enter the app switcher, from where it's easy to drag an app to the left or right edges and enter a split-screen view. "It can have an understanding of you".

What Google, Amazon, and Apple are able to do, which nearly no other company can, is combine enough products and services that a standalone hub starts to make sense on its own, rather than be just an additional expense for convenience. On Tuesday, CEO Sundar Pichai did not make an appearance at his company's event.

That doesn't mean you can't get a Google Assistant device with a camera. Can customers trust even more of their lives in the hands of the data giant? The company's stagnant Google+ social network exposed personal data of up to 500,000 users, though the company says it has patched the flaw and found no evidence of misuse.

Rival Apple has played up its privacy-first practices, and how it collects as little information about its customers as possible. Pricing, Availability, and ExpectationsThe Pixel series is always a brand you can look at to raise the bar.

As usual, the Pixel phones focus heavily on Google's search engine, maps, digital assistant and YouTube video service.

The tablet has been designed for low power consumption - Google claims a charge should last around 10 hours, which puts it in the same ball park as Apple's iPad Pros.

Ask any smartphone fan what the best camera is on a phone and if they don't mention the Pixel in some capacity, then they probably don't know what they're talking about.

Cute. Yes, we understand that cute is hardly a word to associate with smartphones but that's the first thing that strikes you about Google's new smartphone, the Pixel 3.

The Pixel 3 does have a few things going for it, however. Whenever you take a new picture and it uploads to Photos, it'll pop up on Home Hub as long as one of the selected faces is included. That's 293 pixels-per-inch. Just above that is a wide-angle 8-megapixel selfie camera and the rear snapper is also driven by an 8-megapixel sensor.

Alongside the phones Google announced a slew of new hardware - Pixel Slate, Home Hub, Pixel Stand and new Chromecast.

You can engage a feature called Night Light where the Slate switches from harsh blue light to warmer tones so it doesn't over-stimulate your eyes. It comes in three colors-Chalk, Charcoal, Aqua, and Sand.

Called "call screen", the tool will answer incoming phone calls on your behalf and transcribe what the caller is saying on your device's screen.

On the Pixel 3 screen, you see an instant transcript of the caller's responses so you can decide whether to pick up. As someone who religiously uses mechanical keyboards I felt personally attacked by that part of the keynote, but that's a conversation for another time.

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