Google reshapes into hardware company with Pixel phone
Google has unveiled its first ever ‘made by Google’ smartphone, called the Pixel. The new handset has brought the search giant into the booming smartphone hardware market, which already has Apple and Samsung as the leaders.
The Google Pixel is the world’s first smartphone with the Android 7.1 Nougat OS. It includes Google Assistant, which lets users have natural conversations with Google and find answers to their real-life questions. Additionally, Google is offering pre-installed Google Duo and Allo apps to give an advanced communication experience.
Developers would get a chance to integrate their apps with Google Assistant some time in the future. However, the experience is so far limited to Google’s core apps and services.
While the software side of Pixel is novel and innovative, its hardware is just another high-end offering. The smartphone comes in two different variants, with 12.7cm (5-inch) and 13.9cm (5.5-inch) AMOLED display options. Additionally, there is the latest Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 chipset and up to 128GB of storage.
The phone also comes with a 12.3-megapixel primary camera sensor with PDAF and LDAF technologies and an f/2.0 aperture. Google claims that these inputs enable the smartphone to offer the ‘best rear camera’ experience.
The Pixel starts at US$ 649 in the US (` 57,000 in India) to rival Apple iPhone 7 and Samsung Galaxy S7.
Although the Pixel is a fresh offering in the smartphone market, it is not the first attempt by Google. The company had earlier launched several Android based mobile devices under its Nexus brand. Likewise, it had even acquired Motorola in 2011 (which it later sold to Lenovo in 2014) to manufacture smartphones with a vanilla Android experience.
That being said, the Pixel is a major step to help Google reach new levels. It might not attract the masses but could enable the company to make a dent in the smartphone market, which is predicted to hit US$ 2 billion in sales in 2020.