Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL have arrived, and there's not much to be said about specs-on-paper. All the leaks were spot-on, and there's no pixel ultra. So where we would – in a normal year – be barely processing where these phones sit in the market, analyzing how they compare to the competition, and talking about their looks (or lack thereof), we've had the luxury already having done more of that than average.
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There are some new details to peruse, but mostly what's new see them for ourselves – in person. They feel and we can not see them just as phones with spec sheets going head-to-head with Samsung or OnePlus, but as Google's centerpiece for its newly -expanded ecosystem. about Niagara Falls, feel the mist my face.
My first and most significant impression of the Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL is an idea you have without playing with yourself. I'm the person that jokingly threatened to boycott Google I'm not happy with that, but I'm not happy with it Android space over the last year or two. And I also talked openly about how the Google Pixel 2 looked last year, even compared to its already-dated predecessor.
Honestly, I had familiar misguided feelings when the original Pixel leaked (and then launched). I thought it would be a good idea to look at it and look at it. But then I was felt felt just how well the device worked .
For those who do not remember, that's the phone, they're reliable, polished, and consistent, tight integration with the smartest assistant in the AI battle, and thoughtful design decisions, made it widely regarded as one of the – if not the – best Android phones. To this day, I still feel foolish for thinking it what "ugly".
Last year, to me, felt … different. The Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL felt like a weird step sideways. The Pixel 2 felt like a Pixel 1.5 in the look department, while the larger Pixel 2 XL felt like a true successor – but the Google Store homepage showcase phone was plagued by many issues with its most critical component , Its display was a mess. Not a deal-breaker, but a mess nonetheless. It overshadowed the phone's just-as-incredible software, at least for me.
Given the negative emotions I had associated with the notch-and-chin sporting, "it must be fake!" (According to those in denial ), conspiracy-surrounded, totally-leaked Google Pixel 3 XL, I was for something worried that this year would be a continuation of last year – another year that felt like the phones were unpolished, rushed, afterthought compared to their former greatness.
But today, all of the preconceived notions I had about the XL's arbitrarily bad design cases virtually melted away. With just a few hours with the phones, I felt the same initial delight that I felt with the original pixel. The hardware issues and external design discrepancies of yesteryear are basically gone through my first impression and the software, even with some weird pre-launch bugs, is again the most compelling aspect of this phone.
One thing that you can not know about the Pixel 3 and 3 XL unless you check it out for yourself is just the nice, soft-touch glass back is. It feels like the softest hard surface you've ever touched. Like a piece of glass that has been sanded with the finest grain sandpaper ever. IPhone 8 / X or Samsung Galaxy, then prepare to be pleasantly surprised by just how nice this phone feels in your hand.
Another thing is that the two phones once again feel like they are true siblings! Last year's Pixel 2 and 2 XL felt like they were just different generations or made by completely different teams – despite the fact that they had lots of fundamental similarities. The camera lenses were swapped around. The edge where the glass is very different. The bezels were different. The displays were from different worlds of quality. One had rounded corners on the display. The vibration motor of the smaller Pixel 2 felt like a step down. Even the coating on the two phones, at least, felt different.
This year, all of that weirdness is gone. The only differences I could feel or sense between the two phones – the difference you already know about. The Pixel 3 XL has not made it to the smaller Pixel 3 goes with a design similar to last year's Pixel 2 XL.
I guess I'll talk a little about that notch – even though it's the most tired topic in the entire conversation around these phones. I spent about an hour with the Google Pixel 3 XL today, and long story short, I basically forgot that the notch and chin were there. I remember how different is from actually using it . It's the same observation I made the iPhone X for a few weeks. Not only do you forget it's there, you appreciate the extra screen real estate.
I've said it before and I ' I'll say it again. Nor the industrial design enthusiast's aversion to it. Looking at the phones in photos it sticks out like a sore thumb to me, but it's just a different story using it. It's not something to praise necessarily, but I'd equate it to my sentiment about the original Google Pixel's design. The external appearance was not worth praising but it is functional and non-problematic.
It's worth noting that there's always the option of the indentical-in-every-other-way smaller pixel 3 if you want to go with a more traditional look (one that has the same conclusion about, by the way). So, Google confirmed it's adding an option to turn off the notch. So even if you are a hardline and passionate anti-notch, you can convert your Pixel 3 XL to a Pixel 2 XL look with a single tap.
Some more random first observations:
- My experience with this is 470 of RAM has been published.
- I love the Not Pink color. It truly is Not Pink, but it is. Hard to describe. I want one.
- The Clearly White Pixel 3 XL is gorgeous too. I wanted a truly-white XL last year.
- Performance of the app switcher / multitasking is way snappy than on Pixel 2 / XL.
- The vibration engine is over the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL, but still no taptic engine. It just does not have the forceful kick and tactility that the iPhone has. Better than every other Android phone so far, though, in my opinion.
- The screens on both are the same quality and gorgeous. I'll talk about them in my full review.
- I really like the all-left left rail on the phones. No SIM tray. No nothing. Really sleek.
- The device is metal. Not polycarbonate or any other weird material. Metal. Glass back. Google confirmed this to us directly. It so feels nice and premium to my touch.
- Pixel Stand seems like a no-brainer for any Pixel 3 owner.
I've got more thoughts on the Pixel 3 XL, but for now I just wanted to explain my first few hours. So many things you expect with the Pixels are unsurprisingly great. The camera is as good as you expect. Genuinely useful to me.
For now, know this: My feelings and expectations about Google's future smartphone efforts are completely refreshed after today's event. I'm much more optimistic about these phones than I can just wait for you in deep.
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