Today (4th October 2017) Google has announced some cool new features both to Google itself and mobile.
Now I won't cover everything here, just the most interesting parts in breif.
Google first announced its Pixel line of phones last year and whilst the design was a little boring (and lets face it, a straight copy of the iPhone.) The camera was quickly rated as the best camera in the business. Now I'm an iPhone user and I was pretty blown away when my friend Stuart first showed me the image quality from the phone. That was a reason in itself to get the first Pixel.
Now it's time for Google Pixel 2. AI + Software + Hardware.
- 5" and 6" models.
- Song recognition on always on display
- New aluminium design.
- New AR Features
- Ultra Vivid OLED displays
- Super Fast Charging
- Worlds fastest fingerprint sensor
The new all aluminium body gives it a sleeker and more premium look than the original and features a new two-tone design. The design looks nice. I'm not sure if its the most premium looking phone, but I do love the minimal bezel on the larger device. The smaller phone looks very similar to the original Pixel.
No headphone connection. Google is another company who has dropped the headphone jack, so you'll need to use the included adapter.
Polarised screens so you can see it even when you use sunglasses.
New AR features.
Camera Dxo Mark of 98!
The last camera got a score of 89, making it the best smartphone camera ever. Google has outdone last years camera and now gets a score of 98!
I must say the sample photos look incredible. It has an advanced portrait mode which takes an incredible depth map and doesn't need a second camera to do it.
Video is also smoothed out using some advanced computing and the inital jobs look great.
This year, the camera uses something that Google is calling a “dual-pixel sensor,” which is supposed to literally divide every pixel in two.
The split pixels act as a second lens. Each image is slightly offset so Google can use that data to create a depth map. Using that data it creates better HDR and blur effects. It's even enabled on the front facing camera too.
You can do similar things on the new iPhone 8 and X, however Google is offering unlimited free photo and video storage in up to 4K, quite incredible for content creators, video makers and photographers.
The phones start at $649 with the more interesting Pixel XL starting at $849, however if you pre-order you get a Google Home Mini for free.
Google Home Mini and Google Home Max:
New Google Home Mini - a new smaller device which apparently offers amazing sound in a tiny device. Has all the great features and comes with an amazing price of $49.99!
Google Home Max: For music lovers, Google has announced Google Home Max, a and fantastic looking speaker which is 20 times more powerful than Google Home.
The speaker can automatically tune itself to your homes room sizes for perfect audio and will even lower music in the morning and pumping it back up in the afternoon. The speaker can be laid on its side on flat.
It features the Google Assistant and will launch for $399 in the US only at launch.
The updated Google Assistant now has improved voice match. This means if you ask something to Google Home it will give the answer to you personally. For example, If I asked what have I got planned for the weekend, then my partner asked the same question it would answer based on our personal calendars!
If you asked "did my team win at the weekend" It will answer based on my personal team. How cool is that!
The Google PixelBook comes with ChromeOS and Google Assistant. It's trying to be the ultimate 'do all laptop' and features a 4-in-1 design which features
- Laptop Mode
- Movie Mode
- Tablet Mode (the device can run all android apps)
- Tent Mode
Now this probably won't be a laptop for most of you editors and creators, but maybe it could be a replacement for your iPad or Tablet. I know I get frustrated with my iPad Pro as I can't-do some basic productivity tasks. If this device can, I think I might swap.
It also comes with the PixelBook Pen (think Apple Pencil or Surface Pen) however it comes with some neat tricks... Circle a picture of a person and Google will instantly tell you who it is. It can, of course, be used for drawing and has just 10ms of latency making it one of the fastest digital pens on the market.
The only thing which is a little off-putting is the high starting price of $999.99 may put a lot of customers off. It's more of a tablet replacement than a laptop replacement in my opinion.