The most leaked flagship of the year is finally out now. Although most of the features that it has were leaked already, but Google never fails to use things in a new way! Here is what the Pixel 4 lineup offers and why you should care about the most camera hyped smartphone series from past few years.
When it was leaked that pixel 4 will bring Project Soli along with it, not all people were excited about it, many thought it will be just a new gimmicky feature to control some functions like switching tracks while listening songs, increasing volume and some other features that nobody asked for. LG G8 was that flagship that introduced these features. No doubt, it is commendable that they tried something out of the box and introduced something new, but it did not have any technological advantage over its rivals.
Enters the Pixel 4. This time they have used that thick bezel on the top of the device to house a lot of sensors and one of those sensors is a small RADAR that is doing some stuff that nobody could imagine could have been done. The RADAR sensor on the front detects the presence of the user as it creates an area around the device and when user is in that area, it improves user’s experience and here’s how.
While the phone is locked and you reach out the phone to unlock it, the RADAR sensor gets activated and pushes the face unlocking mechanism to search for a face and the phone starts recognizing the face before you even press the power button. This leads to phone getting instantly unlocked when you press the power button making it the fastest in the category.
The sensor is also used for hand wave recognition and it can be used for those gimmicky stuff mentioned above. You can also use it to sneeze alarms with hand gestures.
The most disappointing part about this is that they have removed the fingerprint scanner and not even gave an in display scanner. Google has gone Apple’s way on this.
Display, hell yeah its smoother now!
This time, Google played a new move by introducing a 90Hz refresh rate display on their Pixel 4 lineup. This was not expected as Google usually takes a slow approach in changing things. But maybe to wash off that flagship with the most mediocre display of Pixel 2, Google had to do something, and of course they have done very well. Moreover, the display is HDR certified as any other flagship on the market. The resolution of the smaller one is Full HD+ and the larger one is Quad HD+ giving a ppi of 444 and 537 respectively.
The Pixel’s have always been behind the competition when it comes to design. This time, it’s no different. The design is not ugly but in the age of foldable smartphones, punch hole camera’s and even motorized camera’s Pixel 4 lineup has a thick bezel on the top to house the sensors for Face recognition and that RADAR sensor. Well I would not complaint much seeing the hardware but still could have been better.
Other design factors include a Glass aluminium sandwiched bodies with Gorilla Glass on both front and the back of the device. The frame is aluminium.
Most importantly, Google has dropped that two toned designed theme on the back of the device. That design was the trademark of Google and now it comes in three colors, Matt white, glossy black and a limited edition orange color which looks dope to be honest!
Performance and Battery
Finally Google made a decision to give 6 gigs of RAM in their Pixel 4 lineup. This is done because Pixel 2 and Pixel 3 owners started complaining about the smoothness of the UI in 8 months after buying them and that was because of less RAM which could not handle the UI efficiently.
Pixel 4 comes with Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 SoC just like any other flagship. But the new thing with Pixel lineup is that they have a special Neural processor to make the photos better(more about it later) and a special security chip to make device more secure.
The Pixel 4 has a 2800 Mah battery and the bigger one has 3700 Mah. Not sure how long they will last considering 90Hz refresh rate screens this time around. Although the screens have variable refresh rate which jumps from various refresh rates from 60Hz to 90Hz depending on the situation but battery life remains to be tested.
Cameras! – A bit underwhelming
This time Google has been a bit underwhelming in terms of hardware upgrade in the camera. The primary sensor on the back of the device remains the same as the last year and there is a new addition of a telephoto lens. The primary sensor is a 12.2 megapixels sensor with f/1.7 aperture and the Telephoto is 16 megapixels with a f/2.4 aperture and provides 2X zoom. There is no ultrawide camera which is disappointing but Google says, people will use Telephoto more and it is believable, here’s how. The front camera is a single camera system with a wide angle lens of aperture f/2.0 and with 90 degree field of view and a 8 megapixels sensor.
Google says that the telephoto camera will help in improved lossless zoom feature. So now you can zoom a lot without worrying about the quality of the picture. Moreover, telephoto camera means much improved portraits as data from both, wide and telephoto camera will be used.
Also the night sight has been improved a lot more this time and now you can take pictures of the stars in the night. This means that you can do astrophotography with the new Pixels and that is exciting! I don’t remeber any phone doing this before Pixel 4. The camera needs to be tested a lot more before final judgements.
But the most underwhelming part about camera is video. It still maxes out at 4k@30fps while Apple’s been doing 4k@60 fps for a while now and even budget flagships provide 4k@60 fps video recording.
Other features include no headphone jack(yes its a feature for them), fast charging, stereo speakers. The prices of the Pixel 4 are $799 USD and $899 USD for 64/128 Gb storage models and for Pixel 4XL they are $899 USD and $999 USD.