- Google's Pixel 3, one year later: Amazing camera, rough start | Engadget
- What’s in the box
- Review: Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL
This means you can see a transcription in real-time, even without a data connection. You can also export either the audio or transcription to Google drive if you want to share them. Android 10 on the Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL is generally great. Read on to see why feature drops have the potential to be a big deal, and not just for Pixel users.
Google's Pixel 3, one year later: Amazing camera, rough start | Engadget
One odd thing to address: David suffered from a weird launch delay when firing up the Settings menu on the XL. According to Google, wide-angle lenses are fun but zoom is more useful. Agree with that or not, the fact remains that the Pixel 4 camera system is not as versatile as many other phones out there that offer all three Apple iPhone 11, Samsung Galaxy Note 10 , etc. The 2x tele lens not only lets you get zoomed-in shots at optical quality, it also contributes to Super Res zoom for better in-between zoom ranges and helps with portrait mode improvements. The real killer feature on the Pixel 4 camera is astrophotography mode, which is so insane you have to see it to believe it.
The real killer feature on the Pixel 4 camera is astrophotography mode , which is so insane you have to see it to believe it.
What’s in the box
When in Night Mode, if the Pixel 4 detects the light is low enough and the sky is visible it will enter astrophotography mode automatically. It then takes up to sixteen second-long exposures, aligns and tweaks them in the background and pops out the kind of astrophotography you normally only get from a fancy DSLR and a lot of editing. The results speak for themselves and are truly incredible. What lenses the Pixel 4 has, though, are very impressive. The Pixel 4 manages to capture more detail than the Pixel 3, handles white balance even better thanks to a machine learning-based algorithm, and improves on HDR, portrait mode, and selfies.
We did note selfies occasionally left some subjects looking a little plasticky while others were fine. Portrait mode cutouts were more accurate and bokeh was slightly more realistic. We have a massive Pixel 4 camera comparison that dives into tons of detail, so go check that out. The Pixel 4 camera is once again the very best smartphone camera we've seen. But its lead is slowly eroding. The Pixel 4 can preview what your image will look like before you take the shot, so you can see the processing before it actually happens.
Seeing HDR in real-time means Google was able to add local adjustment sliders when you tap.
Review: Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL
Where previous devices would balance exposure to the area you tapped on, that action has been remapped to reveal brightness and shadows sliders. How good is Pixel 4 face unlock? Face unlock on the Pixel 4 is fantastic. It even works upside down.
It uses two near-infrared NIR cameras, a flood emitter, and dot projector for a very iPhone-like face unlocking experience. In my testing, face unlock on the Pixel 4 was faster than the iPhone 11 every time. I should mention that while I had no issues with Motion Sense detecting my hand as I reached for the phone, David did.
For him, the experience was much less reliable than it was for me. The lack of a fingerprint scanner is a bit disappointing here, because face unlock is not foolproof. There is also the issue of biometric login for apps. Yes, you can just use your PIN, but this feels like a step backward, not forwards. It should be noted that Android 10 supports a new catch-all API for bio-authentication that includes face unlock.
This means developers should be able to update their apps fairly easily, but Google needs to be more assertive with making sure it gets done. What about video?
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The Pixel 4 shoots perfectly fine p video at 30, 60, and fps, but you can only shoot 4K video at 30fps on the main camera. This is disappointing for a phone that tries to position itself as a camera-first device. The company is very clearly invested in breaking new ground where mobile photography is concerned, but video is sadly a second-class citizen. Audio is perfectly good on the Pixel 4. There are stereo speakers on the Pixel 4 via the earpiece and a bottom-firing speaker.
The Pixel 4 handles treble a lot better than the Pixel 3, and the bass is rounder without getting tinny at the high end.
Yes, it provides a fantastic camera and software experience with performance to boot for now. But these characteristics are by no means unrivaled in the Android or iOS space anymore. You can get a reasonably comparable camera on any of a half-dozen phones, some priced much lower than the cheapest Pixel, and great software and performance on a lot of phones.
Since this review was first published, a number of limited-time promotions have made the Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL a much more attractive proposition. Ask your Assistant to play your favorite songs, hear incoming messages and notifications, get directions and much more. Shop Phones. Manage tasks Send a text, set reminders, turn on battery saver and instantly look up emails.
What's my confirmation number for my flight to Philadelphia? How do I get to SFO by public transit? Plan your day Check your flight status, make a dinner reservation, check when your movie starts, and find a coffee stop along your route. Play the T. Playing music. Make memories Your Assistant makes it incredibly simple to find your photos — and to take them as well. Below you can see a percent zoomed in crop of the Empire State Building. The iPhone XS's 2x optical telephoto lens takes the crisper photo.
A percent crop shows the iPhone's optical zoom is sharper than the Pixel 3's digital Super Res Zoom. Photobooth is a cheesy mode accessed within the camera app's "more" section. It takes pictures whenever it detects smiles and silly faces.
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It might be fun for when you've got a bunch of friends together, but most of the time, I ended up having to really exaggerate my face expressions in order to trigger the shutter. In the end, I ended up with dumb-looking selfies like these, which I'm so, so, so , embarrassed to share but am doing so in the name of tech journalism! Google could have made Photobooth better by automatically compiling four of these into a collage as soon as they're taken. But no So instead of something instant, you often get a collage with even more embarrassing shots you never wanted to show to the world:.
Sure could use the Google Assistant to not select the bad shots in this auto-created collage. Motion Auto Focus is an autofocus follow feature. Tap on a moving object and the camera will follow it, keeping it in focus. It worked on these ducks in the shot below, but for people or things moving at faster speeds, you will see some motion blur in your shots. Still better than no motion-tracking autofocus at all, though. Motion Auto Focus follows a moving object so it's stays in focus for a shot or video.