Google Pixel 2 goes official: Android Oreo showcase and possibly the best camera on a phone

The Google Pixel 2 has finally broken cover, and the new Google phone is all about refinements and improvements.

There is one thing that the Pixel 2 is not: a "bezel-less" phone. Quite the opposite, it's got a big and prominent chin and forehead where two front-firing speakers are located for better sound quality. Under the hood, it rocks the Snapdragon 835 system chip, a market improvement from the Snapdragon 821 of last year.

The back of the Pixel 2 retains the glass accent around the camera, but makes it smaller. What is lacking here is a secondary rear camera, but the main one is improved over what was widely seen as one of the best cameras in the original Pixel. Also, it does support Portrait Mode. Turns out, it was possible even with one camera. Sadly, Google has removed the headphone jack in the Pixel 2, a feature the company touted as an advantage just last year with the original Pixel. On a more positive note: the new Pixel 2 is finally water protected with an IP67 rating, identical to Apple's iPhone 8.

Here is a quick look at the specs highlights of the Pixel 2 and how the new phone compares to its predecessor.

Camera: New Era of Computational Photography

The Pixel 2 ships with a 12-megapixel camera with a 1/2.6-inch sensor, slightly smaller than on the original Pixel. While the original did not have optical stabilization, though, the new Pixel 2 does have OIS on board for better stability and sharper focus. Google is the only company that uses simultaneously OIS and electronic stabilization for better stability in video, and the results look very impressive.

The interesting thing with the new Pixel 2 camera is that it has better dynamic range thanks to computational photography and an improved HDR+ mode that combines multiple pictures without the user ever seeing that to come up with one beautiful final image. There is also a new Portrait Mode that will blur the background of an image to make the subject pop. The iPhone Plus and the new Samsung Galaxy Note have something similar, but here what's new is that it is achieved in a completely different way than what other phones do. The trick is possible thanks to machine learning and a neural network trained to recognize faces. Each pixel on the camera sensor is actually split in two - a technology known as Dual Pixel - and this allows creating a depth map of a scene and the clever portrait mode effect.

Neatly, Pixel 2 users will get free unlimited storage for photos and videos on Google Photos as well, which is a great thing.

New Pixel Launcher

Google used Nexus phones to show the best and newest of Android, and now the Pixel has that role.

That's why it's no surprise that the Pixel 2 comes with pure Android Oreo with features like notification dots and picture-in-picture, and it has a new version of the Pixel Launcher. 

The most prominent change is that the Google Search bar is now right above the navigation buttons, within easier reach for the fingers. Previously, it was at the top part of the screen, where you need to stretch your hand to reach it, especially on bigger phones. At the top, you can see upcoming meetings and all relevant events thanks to the new widget.

Active Edge is a new feature similar to "Edge Sense" on HTC phones. It allows you to squeeze the frame of the phone for quick actions, for instance, you can set this action to take a selfie.

Price and Availability

The bad news about the new Google Pixel 2 is that it will only be available on Verizon Wireless in the United States. You will also be able to buy the phone unlocked on the Google Store, but you will not be able to get the phone on any other major US carrier. Google pulled the same trick last year with the Pixel when the phone and unfortunately the same story repeats this year.

The Pixel 2 will be available in Australia, Canada, Germany, India, UK and US.

The Google Pixel 2 full retail price is set at $650 for the 64GB model ($27.04 on 24-month financing) and $750 for the 128GB version, on par with last year's model. Google will also run a trade-in program for owners of the first-gen Pixel. Those who pre-order the new Pixels will also get a free Google Home Mini. Finally, the release date for the Pixel 2 is set for October 19th, in just about two weeks.

source: Google

Related phones

Pixel 2
  • Display 5.0" 1080 x 1920 pixels
  • Camera 12.2 MP / 8 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 835, Octa-core, 2350 MHz
  • Storage 128GB
  • Battery 2700 mAh



1. peace247 unregistered

New pencil for pixel book has 10ms latency...thats insane!!!!

2. PhoneInQuestion

Posts: 496; Member since: Aug 20, 2017

ChromeOS is developing nicely. I picked up a very cheap one from Walmart for 109$ and damn is it smooth for the price.

3. PhoneInQuestion

Posts: 496; Member since: Aug 20, 2017

"Google Pixel 2 goes official: Android Oreo showcase, but has big bezels and no audio jack" Neither do a few other phones, your headlining sucks. Add to that your own staff defended another certain OEM for doing the same thing.

12. IT-Engineer

Posts: 584; Member since: Feb 26, 2015

Did you expect anything else from Victor..

17. Victor.H

Posts: 1104; Member since: May 27, 2011

The story was under development, so that was my working title. I've now finalized it and have put the camera in the headline as that is the defining feature of the phone.

4. Cat97

Posts: 2022; Member since: Mar 02, 2017

The bezels are not big, they are humongous !

5. Sakeem

Posts: 865; Member since: Sep 05, 2012

Hmmmm.....just now in the at a glance section of the phone in the presentation, it said Pixel Ultra meeting. Hmmmmm???

6. Furkan

Posts: 552; Member since: Feb 25, 2017

(After I see this phone) I would rather get phones like remote control Lol

7. zpaul2fresh8

Posts: 19; Member since: Mar 27, 2013

So no wireless charging? Only 4GB of RAM, no expandable storage? I'll pass...

8. acme64

Posts: 129; Member since: Jul 13, 2015

no dimensions available yet?

9. Lumberjack

Posts: 306; Member since: May 04, 2017

It says Pixel 2 has 1/2.6" cam. Pixel has a 1/2.3". Why use a smaller sensor?

16. Victor.H

Posts: 1104; Member since: May 27, 2011

And it sticks out a little bit now, weird.

10. tani24

Posts: 51; Member since: Feb 24, 2015

Just one word: SKIPPPP!

11. Bondurant

Posts: 787; Member since: Jun 04, 2014

- Gigantic bezels - 1080 p screen resolution only - Google sales will be slow to deliver - no headphone jack - no ip68 - no wireless charging - only 2700mAh battery - high price reflected nowhere By phonearena review standards(see essential phone review), this should get a 2/10.

13. Gatorsrule52

Posts: 103; Member since: Mar 18, 2013

1) gigantic? Not really. It's just average. 2)5 inch screen dude 3)Nothing to do with the phone and you don't even know if that's true 4)Sure 5)ip67... Practically the same thing. Neither is water proof and both could fail (shown with the iPhone 7 [ip67] lasting longer in some water tests than the S7 [ip67] ) 6) sure 7) Snapdragon 835 on a 1080p display will result in really really good battery life 8) the price is lower than most flagships...

14. mikehunta727 unregistered

Best camera on a smartphone this year bar none

18. cmdacos

Posts: 4386; Member since: Nov 01, 2016

100% agree and was the same last year but for me, there is not enough of a camera difference over the competition to overlook all the shortcomings as others noted above.

15. CX3NT3_713

Posts: 2364; Member since: Apr 18, 2011


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