Operation secrecy. At this point, Google can still learn a lot from Apple. Although Cupertino is also increasingly difficult to hide the specs of his latest models to the keynote in front of the public, but Google had there in the run-up to the Google Pixel 3 presentation much more difficulties: press images were leaked long, pre-series models stolen and demonstrated in unboxing on YouTube. Even the final packaging appeared weeks ago.
When even days ago in Hong Kong and Canada a first Pixel 3 appeared in black and even was to buy, Google could actually cancel today’s event in New York …
But this is simply the Christmas business too important: Apple has already brought with iPhone XS and the iPhone XS Max two potential bestsellers in the trade, then the end of October, the iPhone XR, with a slightly cheaper price (only LCD instead of OLED Screen) should provide for Apple’s main business in the smartphone segment between October and December. LG announces ambitions with the new VG40 ThinQ (sales start probably still in November) and OnePlus teaser its new T6 for days already worldwide.
On top of that Google had a lot to tell about the Pixel 3 – and a few other quite interesting devices in stock. Including the Charger Pixel Stand. As it charges, Pixel 3 becomes a Google Assistant-supported intelligent display and speaker. The stand certainly has potential to become the secret star of Google devices. As with all hardware #madebygoogle here is a kind of Mountain View Mantra: Artificial intelligence plus software plus hardware should be the package with which Google wants to beat the competition out of the box. In fact, the full integration of the Google Assistant is a very strong asset of the devices.
Added to this is a very clear design language, with which Google has in the recent past a whole series of prizes and thus clearly stands out from Amazon’s echo, for example, in the case of the smart speakers.
Premium class with corresponding prices
If you want to understand the Pixel 3 and 3 XL, you first have to look back briefly: In 2016, Google decided to finally discontinue the Nexus series and instead of middle class to premium class – with prices that can ever be four digits.
With the pixel Google wanted to accomplish the balancing act to offer own hardware, without building own hardware. Sounds strange: But “Made by Google” was until today, that Google gets known manufacturers on the boat to produce its “own” devices. The first pixel was fabricated by HTC. Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL came from the hallowed halls of LG and again HTC.
The ambitions are still large and promising for Android users, because the pixel “Made by Google” guarantees up to three years of system updates and monthly patches – unusual for Android devices of this size.
Plus point: The recently released Android 9 Pie is preinstalled on the new Pixel models. This makes them one of the first devices running under Pie.
The Pixel 3 will cost 849 euros, the Pixel 3 XL 949 euros, each with 64 GB. With 128 GB it will be more expensive: 949 or 1049 euros. To have the devices from 2 November, you can pre-order it now.
Pixel 3: numbers and dates
The Pixel 3 features a 5.5 “OLED display (14 cm) with an aspect ratio of 18: 9 with 2160 x 1080 pixels. The dimensions of the housing are 145.6 x 68.2 x 7.9 millimeters. This corresponds almost to the dimensions of its predecessor Pixel 2. Surprisingly: Finally a premium smartphone without a notch. But only in the 3, not the 3-XL version.
Although the display is larger than the pixel 2, the shape factor remains almost unchanged. Google does not take any risks. Even dares to install a rather small battery with only 2915 mAh.
The main camera protrudes, as with the iPhones, out of the case.
Also new is that the Pixel 3 is IP68 certified, before it was IP67. Also applies to the XL, which with 6.3 inches instead of 6 inches (Pixel 2 XL) offers a slightly larger screen (16 cm diagonal), but does not come close to the 6.5 “of the iPhone XS Max. The Pixel 3 XL, of course also with OLED display, dissolves with 1440x 2880 pixels at 494 ppi and offers the dimensions of its predecessor: 157.9 x 76.7 x 7.9 millimeters. Surprisingly: The Notch is available at the Pixel 3 XL and significantly larger than the new iPhones.
The colors: black, white, pink. Or as Google calls it: Just Black, Clearly White, Not Pink. Both models use a Snapdragon 845 processor with 4 GB of RAM each. The internal memory offers 64 or 128 GB.
Offers and Functions: From Stand to Top Shot
- Quick access to Google Assistant: The Pixel devices are again equipped with a push-button frame that activates the Google Assistant. This option was already integrated with the predecessors.
- Bonus for pre-order: Google grabs at the short decision makers the Pixel Stand, which makes the Smartphone so to speak Smart Home, speaker and control functions included.
- Flip to Shhh: The new software-side feature ensures that notifications are not delivered when you put the device on the display. Even a push does not come then. This DND mode is very handy, but not completely new, but already known by other Android device manufacturers.
- Google lens integrated into the camera: With Lens you can scan and translate texts, find similar garments or identify unknown plants and animals – by long pressing the camera image in the Pixel 3 camera. For example, if you target the camera to a URL, a QR code on a flyer, or an e-mail address on a business card, Google Lens suggests the next action, such as creating a new contact.
- Top Shot: For example, the new feature allows you to take selfies with multiple people, and then the best photo will be selected by the AI. In addition, Google has built a feature that Apple users know from the live photos. One picture is taken with several pictures, which can then be selected. Extra-wide selfies can be shot with the 8 megapixel dual camera (while the front-can with 12 MP dissolves). Obviously, Google is obviously also proud of Night Sight, a feature that is supposed to make it possible to shoot images in low-light conditions. For self-confidently presented here for comparison, a comparison shot with the iPhone Xs, in which the Pixel 3 visibly better results – for the actual assessment as neutral tests can certainly not harm.
- In the box itself, you’ll find a USB-A adapter, a USB-C to 3.5mm jack headphone adapter, and the USB-C Pixel Buds, in-ear headphones that come with the predecessor Pixel 2 were not yet a free encore.
The pixel competition
- In addition to the three new iPhones Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL duel with the LG VG40 ThinQ and the OnePlus T6 (from 30 November).
- The new LG premium model price and date for the Germany launch are not yet fixed. The US price is $ 900. There are five cameras for that. In addition to the 5- and 8-megapixel front camera, the Asians spend the smartphone on the back of a triple camera: 12 megapixels (78-degree angle), 16 megapixels with 107-degree angle and a telephoto camera with 12 megapixels. The OLED display is 6.4 inches. Also on board: DTS 3D surround speaker and an extra button for the Google Assistant. The colors: Aurora black and Morocco blue.
- The new OnePlus top model will replace the OnePlus 6ab, which was released in mid-2018. The Chinese manufacturer offers the T6 a built-in fingerprint sensor, a larger compared to its predecessor battery and better protection against water and dust. In terms of price, the OnePlus T6 is reported to be well below the LG. From $ 550 it should start already.
Pixel 3 to touch
Google wants to shorten the waiting time and give interested parties the opportunity to extensively test the Pixel 3. For this purpose, so-called Google Pixel Studios in Berlin, Hamburg and Munich will be opened on 18 October. There is also a supporting program with workshops and lectures by guests on various topics such as wellbeing, photography, fashion, sports and gaming. Sign up if you are interested in g.co/googlepixelstudios.
Even more hardware
Almost traditionally, more hardware from the Google series, at least for now, not the way to Germany. That’s unfortunate, the just a device like the Pixel Slate Chrome OS, potential competitor for the iPad Pro, made a pretty good impression. At least next year, it will create Home Hub to Germany, with the Google wants to attack most of all Amazon’s Echo Show.