Google's hardware event finally took place today, and the highlight of the show was, naturally, the new duo of Pixel phones, the Pixel 4 and 4 XL. After revealing tidbits of information for the past few months, in addition to numerous leaks, there wasn't much we didn't know about at this point.
The first thing the company talked about was the Soli radar on the front of the device, which can be used for facial recognition and air gestures, meaning you don't have to touch your phone to use it. Google says the face unlock on the Pixel 4 is the fastest of any phone, because it prepares to scan your face before you pick it up.
Google also talked about how the Google Assistant has been improved on the Pixel 4, thanks in part to an on-device language model that makes the voice processing much faster. It's possible to use your voice to perform a number of tasks, such as viewing a Twitter profile, performing a search on a webpage, and sharing a screenshot of what you're seeing.
There's also a new Recorder app that can transcribe what's being recorded in real time and make it possible to search for words and phrases inside a recording. Using the on-device language model, all of this can be done even when you're not connected to the internet.
One of the standout features of this year's Pixel phones is the addition of a 90Hz display, which has become more common in flagship phones this year, including the OnePlus 7 Pro. Google says the Pixel 4's display got an A+ rating from DisplayMate.
As usual, one of the highlights of the new Pixel phones is the camera, or rather, cameras. This time around there are two cameras on the back of the phone, a main shooter and a 2x telephoto lens, which can be combined with Google's Super Res zoom for sharper shots. There's also a hyperspectral sensor. What's most special about the cameras is the computational capabilities that Google typically adds to them, and that holds true with the newest iterations.
One of the additions is Live HDR+, so you can more easily preview what your shot will actually look like before you take it. It also has dual exposure controls, so you can control the general exposure and shadows specifically. Google has also improved the white balance in complicated lighting conditions.
Google has also improved portrait mode thanks to the new secondary sensor. Combining the dual cameras with Google's own dual pixel technology, its now possible to get portrait shots of larger objects, as well as from farther away. Night Sight has also been improved to make it possible to take pictures of the night sky even later at night, capturing more individual stars, or even the moon.
The Pixel 4 family will come with Qualcomm's Snapdragon 855 chipset, which isn't quite the most powerful out there but should be more than enough for most people. The devices also come with 6GB of RAM and either 64GB or 128GB of storage. The battery is just 2,800mAh on the Pixel 4, and 3,700mAh on the 4 XL.
Both phones will be available starting today, with shipping starting on October 24, with prices starting at $799 for the Pixel 4, and they come three months of Google One with 100GB of cloud storage. Google has also expanded its carrier partnerships, so you can get the new phones from Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint, Spectrum, Xfinity, and Google Fi. They'll be available in Just Black, Clearly White, and Oh So Orange, which is a limited edition.