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Pixel 3 XL: the new Google has a big nodge – and smart cameras

The Google Pixel 3 XL updates its specifications and integrates much more artificial intelligence into its rear camera and dual front camera.

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With the Pixel 3 XL, Google wants to show that you do not have to be the prettiest to be good.

The Pixel 3 XL is the largest and most powerful Google phone to date. It integrates a 6.3-inch screen and its specifications and functions have been updated compared to its predecessor. While its design includes the largest eyebrow (or notch ) we have seen on a cell phone (especially for how large it appears to be vertically) and a refined rear, it does not present major changes compared to its predecessor.

The Pixel 3 XL was presented on October 9 at an event in New York, where we also met the Pixel 3 and other devices.

Design: Smaller bezels and double front speaker

The Google Pixel 3 XL does not represent a radical change compared to its predecessor, as it keeps the rear part composed with its superior “window” that has become a feature of Pixel. In addition, it detects the pressure placed on the lower part of your body to open Google Assistant and has a double front speaker.

However, Google also demonstrates some developments that reveal a refinement in the design. For example, that glass window now has more curved corners than before.

As for the front, Google significantly reduces the bezels in the Pixel 3 XL and puts an eyebrow or notch as many manufacturers have done this year. However, that eyebrow is not like any other we have seen in the market, because the eyebrow of the Google Pixel 3 XL integrates a double camera like the one we see in the LG V40 ThinQ, but it is much bigger.

The eyebrow of the Pixel 3 XL is not as long (horizontal) as the iPhone X and iPhone XS, but it is much higher (vertically large) than others.

There is no doubt that these changes make the Pixel 3 XL more modern than the Pixel 2 XL and it is good that the company has managed to keep the two front speakers. However, the eyebrow is really big and even the interface has to be adjusted for a larger status bar than normal, similar to what we saw in the Essential Phone.

The Pixel 3 XL does not include a headphone jack, although the company does include a USB headset in the phone box. In addition, Google Pixel 3 XL is still water resistant.

Google Top Shot

Improvements in the cameras: Double front camera and one back

Although most manufacturers are placing at least two rear cameras in their flagship phones, Google does it the other way around, since it includes two front and one back cameras. These two front cameras offer functions similar to those of the LG V40 ThinQ, as they make regular photos or wide-angle photos to capture more of your friends or more from around you.

Google also integrates artificial intelligence (AI) so that by taking a selfie you capture better photos. For example, that artificial intelligence has the ability to capture a series of photos to show you the best, taking into account your smile, if you close your eyes and other aspects.

As for the rear camera, Google also promises improvements despite the fact that, a year after its debut, the camera of the Pixel 2 are still some of the best on the market.

Similar to the front cameras, the rear camera of the Pixel 3 has the ability to make multiple photos before and after to offer you the best possible photo. This feature, which Google calls Top Shot, is similar to what Pixel 2 already had for Motion Photos calls. However, with Top Shot, artificial intelligence is activated to detect and take into account smiles, open or closed eyes and even objects that could be blocking the camera.

One of the disadvantages that Pixel phones have had despite offering excellent cameras has been the lack of a second camera that allows zooming without losing the quality of the photo as much as with the digital zoom (something in which the zoom optical works better). Google seems to understand this and that’s why it now integrates a zoom function with artificial intelligence. In this way, when you zoom with the Pixel 3 XL, artificial intelligence will look to give you more detail than normal when you zoom. This function is called Super Res Zoom.

On the other hand, Night Sight  (night vision) allows you to take pictures in dark situations so that they appear with greater clarity. This does not mean that it only works at night, but also in situations where there are too many shadows.

The Pixel 3 XL camera also allows you to track objects to keep them focused.

As for augmented reality, the Pixel 3 integrate different objects, masks and even Marvel characters, including Iron Man and Hulk. These promise to offer more detail than before and allow you to take photos or capture videos with them.

More importantly, it is now possible to adjust the blurred background in portrait mode, something that other manufacturers have already done.

Finally, the camera app comes with an interface that allows you to switch between modes and other options just by swiping your finger.

Software and other news

The Pixel 3 XL runs Android Pie, so it already offers the new gestures of this version of the Google operating system.

Also, Google offers unlimited storage in original quality to the photos you take with the Google Pixel 3 XL.

Price and availability

The Pixel 3 XL has a starting price of US $ 899 and is already available for pre-order. 

Pixel 3 XL: Features and specifications

  • Display: 6.3 inches (OLED)
  • Operating system: Android Pie
  • Processor: Snapdragon 845
  • RAM: 4GB
  • Storage: 64GB or 128GB
  • Battery: 3,430mAh
  • Rear cameras: 12.2 megapixels with aperture f / 1.8
  • Front camera: Double 8 megapixels
  • Size: 158×76.7×7.9mm
  • Weight: 184 grams
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