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Google Pixel 32GB Review
October is that time of the year when Google announces a new range of Nexus smartphones. But this year had a lot of differences compared to the previous years. First and foremost, Google has changed the name of their flagship lineup from Nexus to Pixel. This is not just a cosmetic change and Google is foraying in to consumer electronics with this change. Unlike previous handsets which had the branding of their original manufacturers on them, the new Pixel phones will not have their manufacturers branding on them.
The rear portion is pretty neat with just the Google logo
They will be promoted as products from Google and it is placed as a premium offering, above the current Nexus lineup. The Pixel phones are manufactured by HTC, but the phones don’t have any branding of HTC whatsoever. That is one of the reasons why Huawei didn’t manufacture this year’s Nexus devices. Google had first promised them complete publicity with their name on the devices but later changed their mind to include just the Google logo.
Google has come out with two devices, the Pixel, and the Pixel XL. The Pixel XL is almost identical to the Pixel in terms of specifications, apart from the larger display and some other minor changes. They have a brand new design which is quite refreshing from the other phones that are present in the market right now. Let’s jump into the in-depth review of the Google Pixel.
Build Quality and Looks – Perfect combination of metal and glass
The looks of the Google Pixel will raise a debate because it might not impress everyone. It has a different design and Google has taken an experimental approach with this one. The body is completely made out of metal and the build quality is top-notch. There is nothing to complain about here. One third portion of the rear side is covered with glass. It is slightly thicker on the top which hides the presence of any camera bump. The glass and metal combination has been tried and tested, but this is quite a new design approach.
Comes in three different finishes, Very Silver, Quite Black and a limited edition, Really Blue
The phone has well rounded edges and flat sides which make it extremely easy to hold. Due to the slightly thicker top portion, the weight distribution is great and the phone is easy to grip on to. It is 7.3mm in thickness and weighs 143g, which is 0.6mm thinner than last year’s Nexus 5X, but 7 grams heavier.
Display and Hardware – Beastly specs for a small phone
The Google Pixel comes with a 5-inch display. This is smaller compared to all the other flagships in the market right now which come with a 5.1-inch display at the minimum. But the panel used is a full HD AMOLED display which ensures a great viewing experience with deep blacks and amazing viewing angles. Due to the smaller screen size, the pixel density is high at 441 pixels per inch, meaning you get crisp and vibrant visuals. The display is further protected with Corning Gorilla Glass 4.
Coming to what’s under the hood. There is the Snapdragon 821 SoC, which is currently the best Snapdragon chipset out there. Apple beat all the other chipsets with their A10 Fusion chipset, but the Snapdragon 821 is the one to beat when it comes to Android smartphones. It is a slightly overclocked version of the Snapdragon 820 with some improvement in performance and power consumption.
There are two variants of the Google Pixel, one with 32GB of internal storage and the higher end variant with 128GB of internal storage. The 32GB variant comes with only 23GB of internal storage due to the presence of Android Nougat and other apps which take up significant storage space. Sadly, there is no microSD card slot for expansion, but Google is claiming unlimited cloud storage for photos with their Google Photos app.
The official poster of the Google Pixel and Pixel XL
There is a generous amount of RAM at 4GB which is good enough. 6GB of RAM would’ve made it quite a tough competitor for the other flagships, though. Other hardware specifications include a rear mounted fingerprint scanner similar to the ones seen on the previous Nexus devices. Luckily, there is the 3.5mm headphone jack and a USB Type C connector.
Camera – The best camera in a smartphone?
The Galaxy S7 Edge has the best camera in the market right now, no doubts about that. It has a score of 88 on DxOMark, which is the current highest. But, during the launch event of the Google Pixel, it was announced that the Pixel would have the best ever camera in a smartphone. This was first considered as a publicity stunt, but they meant that literally. DxOMark has given the camera a score of 89, which is by far the highest score that any phone has received.
On paper, it looks very similar to the previous Nexus device’s camera. It is a 12.3MP sensor with f2.0 aperture and comes with a dual-tone LED flash, phase detection, and laser autofocus. It doesn’t have optical image stabilization but comes with a better electronic image stabilization (EIS). The photos taken outdoors with the Pixel are the best compared to other smartphones. There is an 8MP front shooter with f2.4 aperture as well. This might not do that well in low light conditions but still, produces wide-angle selfies with true colors.
The Pixel produces the best outdoor shots that we’ve seen on a smartphone camera
Slightly low battery, but runs long
The Google Pixel comes with a 2,770mAh battery which might disappoint some people. But don’t let the numbers tick you off. Android Nougat has some great optimizations and Google has done the best that they can. The LG V20 was the first Android Nougat smartphone, but the Google Pixel comes with Nougat 7.1, which is one step higher that the LG V20. The battery lasts all day even after streaming videos and being connected to the internet. There is support for fast charging, so there’s no need to worry about this aspect of the phone.
Google is taking the battle to Apple with the launch of the Pixel smartphones. They are products by Google and are placed in the premium flagships’ segment to take on the newly launched iPhone 7 and 7 Plus. With a refreshing new design, best-in-class chipset, blazing fast performance and a decent battery, the Pixel is a definite winner.
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- The Google Pixel 32GB is manufactured by Google and was added in October 2016 in the Smartphones section
- This product has a rating of 4.5 out of 5
- The best price of the Google Pixel 32GB in Canada is $599.99 at Amazon Canada
- In Canada this product is available in Toronto, Vancouver, Ottawa-Gatineau
- You can find this product at Amazon Canada, DigitalRev