Now that the iPhone X and Galaxy Note 8 have been officially unveiled to the world, the only flagship we are still holding off for is the Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL. These new devices from Google are going to be the latest in the line of pure Android devices which enjoy the latest updates as soon as they’re ready to go. Basically, the Pixel lineup is kind of like Google’s answer to the iPhone. Now, with the launch date rapidly approaching, new Google Pixel 2 features have been leaked.
Artem Russakovskii on Twitter detailed some interesting new pieces of information about the upcoming devices that may be of interested to those who have been holding out to see what Google has in store. He does note that his rumors are unverified but he has trust in the source so take this with a small grain of salt.
First, it sounds like the Pixel 2 will, in fact, only sport a single camera lens. This was pretty much confirmed by previous leaks including the huge image leak that showed us the Pixel 2 in pretty clear detail. However, Artem mentions that one of the new Google Pixel 2 features will be a software bokeh effect on images. I will hold off on reserving judgement until I get to see this feature in action. We have seen in the past that dual sensor camera setups are much better at applying this effect due to their ability to determine the object of the photo and the background. With that said, it would be expected that Google would create a better software solution than third parties so perhaps we can get a quality bokeh effect without needing a dual lens camera.
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In the flurry of Tweets we also get further confirmation that a squeeze for Assistant feature will be implemented. This will be one of the more interesting new Google Pixel 2 features that is an adoption of a similar squeezable frame seen in the HTC U11. Of course, it has been confirmed through certification filing that HTC is the manufacturer working on the Pixel 2 while LG is working on the larger Pixel 2 XL. This means we are going to see a lot of features and design elements from the manufacturer’s devices implemented in this year’s versions of the Pixel devices.
If you’re the kind of person who likes to watch videos on your device without headphones then this next piece of information may be interesting. Apparently the Pixel 2 will feature dual front-facing speakers, similar to the Nexus 6P. As an owner of a Nexus 6P I can say that the dual front-facing speakers are the only feature keeping me from throwing this device as far as it can go when it shuts off with 25% battery remaining. While I don’t listen to much music without headphones or a Bluetooth speaker, the front-facing speakers are great if I’m sitting on the couch and I want to check out a YouTube video. Plus, with no headphone jack, the speakers might be necessary in some situations if you leave your Bluetooth headphones at home.
Another one of the new Google Pixel 2 features outlined in Artem’s Tweets is kind of cool and kind of creepy. Apparently the device will always be listening for music in the background and show the artist information and artwork on your lock screen, similar to what Android does for Spotify or Google Play Music. I think the feature is kind of handy. How often are you watching a TV show or movie and you wonder what artist sings the song on the show? It literally happened to me today (it was Simon and Garfunkel by the way). Right now, you open Shazam and hope you didn’t miss the song by time you opened the app and got it listening. It would be cool to glance at your lock screen and know that information right away. However, it also reaffirms the fact that your smartphone is always listening to everything that happens including background music and, presumably, the conversations you have in private. I know smartphones already do this now but at least they don’t advertise that fact with features that show off the fact they are always listening to EVERYTHING.
Those are just some of the new Google Pixel 2 features we can expect. Google will be showing off their new devices very soon alongside a new, smaller Google Home and a new Pixelbook that will be a Chromebook with the ability to drain your wallet incredibly fast leaving you with nothing but the question, “Why did I just pay that much for a Chromebook?” Yeah… I still haven’t warmed up to the idea of a $1000+ Chromebook. Still, the Google event should be an exciting look at the latest the company has to offer. What do you think? Do these latest leaks have you feeling more excited for the Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL? Let us know!