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Google Pixel 4 Hands On: Damn, it's thoughtful



After three generations of pixel phones, Google wants Pixel 4 to start a new era.

Thanks to a design that no longer takes into account the two-color color scheme of previous pixels, this is visible throughout the phone, something that surpasses the current trends in smooth metal and glass. Instead of matching Pixel 4's metal frame to the back of the phone's glass (White and Orange models), Google retained the same matte black band for all three color options.

Then, Google placed a large square camera module in the upper left corner to highlight one of the most important and defining features of the pixel row, while retaining the brightly colored power button on the previous handsets. In combination, Pixel 4 looks almost as if it had jumped off the pages of a comic, and the phone is boldly separated from the rest of the world.

Photo : Sam Rutherford ( Gizmodo )

And yet inside "It seems Google is bypassing the traditional definition of a smartphone by doing something that is about being thoughtful and smart.

The biggest example of this is Google's new Motion Sense gesture recognition The tiny radar uses chips (called solos) that are embedded in the top of the phone to track nearby objects like your hands or to recognize if someone is nearby.

With a simple swipe, you can instruct the phone to jump to the next track in your playlist. Even more impressive, however, is how the phone uses this object recognition in more sophisticated situations. If you leave the Pixel 4 on a table and cover more than 0.6 meters (the maximum range of the Google Soli radars), the display of the phone will be disabled to extend the battery life. If nobody is around, why is he wasting electricity when displaying information nobody can see?

Photo : Sam Rutherford ] [ Gizmodo )

The situation is similar with the use of hand movements to silence an alarm or telephone conversation. You can wave to close it, but even if you just pick up the phone, the Pixel 4 detects your hand and reduces the volume of the phone. The purpose of the alarm is to grab your attention and not disturb you and everyone else around you. As soon as the phone has completed its task, the sounds become quieter.

Google even uses solos to improve Pixel 4 face recognition Using motion to wake up the phone's 3D Point Projector causes rapid blistering, so the phone is probably already unlocked before you lift the arm completely to have.

Thanks to Soli you can now pet the damn Pikachu.
Photo : Sam Rutherford [ Gizmodo )

This use of gesture recognition is fundamentally different from the chunky air motion feature of the LG G8 . It can even replace people who have been burned by LG's attempt to make gesture recognition this spring.

Pixel Camera support for Night Vision Astrophotography, Live HDR + video recording, and better details for Portrait mode are helpful. That said, the most exciting new camera feature today is Google's Double Exposure Control, which allows users to finally adjust their photos after years of pixels without manual camera settings, without opening a separate app.

See how dark it was in the demo room compared to what you see in Pixel 4's camera app.
Photo : Sam Rutherford [ Gizmodo )

The pensive thing about Pixel 4 double-exposure control is that you will not get anything nerdiges like a histogram. All that You get are two small sliders that are surprisingly powerful. Even without knowing what the sliders control, you can avoid backgrounds being blown out or underexposing a subject with just a few quick touches. No photo training is required (although a little know-how is always helpful).

Despite the lack of time, Pixel 4's new astrophotography mode was very easy to use. As long as it is dark enough and the camera is stationary, turning on Night Sight will automatically turn on the Astrophotography setting. As soon as you press the shutter button, you'll get a simple countdown (up to 4 minutes and 30 seconds), while small pop-up alerts give you information about how the phone works. You can stop recording at any time if you need to adjust the composition or think the picture is good enough. You know that the phone generates the picture in real time.

Unfortunately, there was not much to capture, as the only place dark enough to use 4-pixel Astrophotography mode was in a tiny windowless room.
Photo : Sam Rutherford [ Gizmodo )

The astrophotography mode of Night Sight is not the only Pixel 4 feature that calculates numbers in real time. Thanks to the new Live Transcribe feature built into the Pixel 4 Recorder app, parsing conversations for small information nuggets may have become even easier. Even as I tried this feature in Google's noisy demo room, the Pixel 4 practically captured it and even put Gizmodo in the middle of the text. The phone's only mistake was to write "transcribed" instead of "transcribed", which is pretty forgivable to me. That said, I have two concerns over Pixel 4. That year, Samsung and Apple have expanded the Galaxy S10 / grade 10 and the iPhone to triple cameras 11 . Nevertheless, the Pixel 4 has to make do with a primary and a 2x telephoto camera, but without an ultra-wide-angle camera. In fact, it's even worse, because in 2019, almost all major phone manufacturers, including LG, OnePlus, Huawei, Motorola, and others, released wide-angle camera phones. And since Google has been using a wide-angle selfie camera for Pixel 3 over the past year, Google knows exactly how to use it and what its benefits are.

This makes the abandonment of an ultra wide-angle lens at Pixel 4 a bad decision since since despite the superb image quality of the Pixel 4 still a camera falls short to really match the capabilities his biggest competitor. (I must add that pictures I took with my phone in my short time look amazing with a new 2x telephoto camera in combination with Super Rez Zoom.)

The other problem is Pixel 4's 2,800 mAh standard battery. It's smaller than the Pixel 3's 2,915 mAh battery which took 10 hours and 50 minutes in our battery test last year , When I asked Google's Vice President of Product Management, Brian Rakowski, about the smaller battery of the Pixel 4, he assured me that Google is confident that the smaller phone can last a full day. However, he also recommends that power users are likely to choose the pixel 4 XL.

This makes sense because heavy phone users tend to tend to larger devices, but for people who want a small, powerful, and durable handset, I wish you would not be forced to do so Choice.

Despite these two disadvantages, the Pixel 4 is not only the smartest, but also the most thought-out phone on the market. But I will not know for sure until I spend more time using them. So stay tuned for a full review soon.


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