Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL: 8 reasons to buy (and not to buy) the phones

Google Pixel 2

The Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL are here with one major goal – to make a statement to both Apple and Samsung, the top two smartphone companies in the world.

Even though Huawei is posing a threat to Apple’s position as the second largest smartphone maker in the world behind Samsung, the Cupertino Company is still Google’s main competitor in the U.S.’s premium smartphone market. With the launch of the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL, the search giant wants both Samsung and Apple to know that it has what it takes to compete with them in the smartphone industry. In this regard, here are 8 reasons to buy – and not to buy – the Google Pixel 2 or Pixel 2 XL once the phones start selling about a week from now.

Powerful cameras

Industry experts DxOMark have already given us their review of the Google Pixel 2 camera. Apparently, the camera has a score of 98, the best ever for a smartphone. Prior to this, the title had gone to Apple iPhone 8 Plus and Samsung Galaxy Note 8, both with a score of 94.

The Pixel 2 phones have a 12.2MP lens that supports portrait mode despite the lack of a dual setup. This, combined with the impressive f/1.8 aperture and Google’s HDR+ feature, promise the best performance in low-light conditions. The cameras of both phones come with optical image stabilization for the first time, allowing for great, steadier video shots.

Similar to the original Pixel phones, the Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL also come with support for unlimited Google Photos storage at full resolution.

Google Lens

Still on the camera of the Pixel 2 phones, there’s a new feature known as Google Lens. This is an object recognition feature that works with the Photos and Camera apps. When you point the camera to a movie poster, for instance, Google Assistant will fetch reviews of the movie alongside other information. Google Lens is also able to identify email addresses, phone numbers or even URLs in photos and displays the info so that you can take further action.

Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL

Squeeze the hell out of the phone

HTC U11 made history by becoming the first phone to feature squeezable edges. These allow users to interact with the phone by squeezing the sides and as far as Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL are concerned, such a gesture would launch the Google Assistant. It’s also possible to adjust how firm you need to make the grip.

Huge display screen on the Google Pixel 2 XL

The love for phablets keeps growing each day and now that Google has found a way to fit a bigger screen on a reasonably smaller frame makes it even better. The Google Pixel 2 XL has a 6-inch POLED screen with a QHD+ resolution and 18:9 aspect ratio, just like the LG G6 and LG V30. When compared to the predecessor, the Pixel 2 XL should offer better display quality, but the same cannot be said of the Pixel 2 with respect to the original Pixel phone.

Better always-on display

Samsung and LG already have always-on display feature on their phones, but the Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL have a better version of this feature. In addition to showing you the time and notifications, the always-on feature on the Pixel 2 phones is also always listening. With the help of Google Assistant, the phones will be able to listen and automatically detect and identify songs playing around you and display the information on the screen. Once displayed, you can opt to add the song to your music library or even play it directly on YouTube.

3 years of software updates

The Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL are meant for those who dislike skins and bloatware on Android phones. The two come with the cleanest version of Android Oreo, which translates to snappier performance and faster updates. To make it even better, the new Pixel 2 phones come with 3 years of guaranteed software and security updates.

No headphone jack

The Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL have taken after the iPhone 7, iPhone 8 and iPhone X in ditching the 3.5mm audio jack in favor of a universal USB Type-C port for desktop connectivity, charging and audio output.

Google Pixel 2 leaks

According to Google, the reason for ditching the 3.5mm audio jack is so as to create more room for edge-to-edge display screens. Well, we have much better-looking edge-to-edge phones in the shape of Samsung Galaxy S8, Galaxy Note 8, LG G6 and LG V30, yet they still give you the coveted audio jack. While some claim USB-C ports deliver better sound quality than 3.5mm audio ports, LG has proved otherwise with the use of QDAC to deliver top-notch audio quality on the LG G6 and LG V30.

No wireless charging

Once again Google is lagging behind the rest, including Apple, which has always been a little slower when it comes to adopting new technologies. Samsung and LG already offer smartphones with wireless charging and Apple recently joined the party with the iPhone 8 and iPhone X, but the Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL don’t include support for wireless charging – a strange decision for a phone that costs close to $1000.

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