With the release of the Pixel and Pixel XL, Google is officially a smartphone manufacturer. But their mobile endeavors aren't just limited to software and hardware, as Project Fi has already made them into a legitimate cell service provider.
One of our favorite features on the Pixel Launcher is its App Shortcuts, which work a lot like Apple's 3D Touch for iOS or Huawei's Force Touch. Instead of using pressure sensitivity to call up static and dynamic shortcut menus for apps, Launcher Shortcuts relied on a simple long-press. Now, in the Android 7.1 update for Pixels, there's an update to App Shortcuts that let's you pin shortcut options directly to your home screen for even quicker access.
One of the only downsides to the Pixel XL is that Google's flagship phone does not have stereo speakers. But if Android's awesome development community has taught us anything over the years, it's that limitations like these can be bypassed with some creative software tinkering.
Blue light (like that from our smartphone) tricks the human brain into thinking it's still daytime, even if it's coming from something as small as a screen. So while you're playing around with your new Pixel or Pixel XL after dark, subconscious signals to be awake are preventing you from getting to sleep as early as you should.
Whatever you think of Google's new Pixel phones, the one thing we know for sure is that these are the most polarizing devices in recent memory. On the one hand, we've seen reviews in which longtime Android users say they'll be walking away from the OS all together thanks to Pixel. On the other hand, you've got the iPhone-obsessed David Pierce over at WIRED saying he'll be switching immediately.
Android device manufacturers may see the new Pixel "Phone By Google" devices as just another competitor, one that likely won't upset their entry-level margins. But that would be a mistake. Pixel is Google's call to action. With Google now offering as near to perfect an Android experience as we've had so far, OEMs that want to keep selling smartphones in a world flooded with them will need to start working for the privilege.
If you've noticed a tiny discolored spot on your computer screen that just doesn't seem to go away, chances are you have a stuck pixel. With modern LCD and OLED screens, there are millions of incredibly small dots (pixels) that make up all of the contents of your display—and within these pixels, there is a set of red, green and blue subpixels. These mix together at various levels to create all of the different colors you see.
According to multiple users on Reddit, the Pixel and Pixel XL's camera can have some serious auto-focus issues if you're using a certain type of case with Google's new flagships. When the problem occurs, your camera app will refuse to settle on a focus point, making almost everything in the frame blurry. Redditor HeshoMike uploaded a video of the phenomenon, and you can see it in action here:
Are we about to witness the future of Android OS? Of Google? Of the entire smartphone ecosystem?! Google has just turned 18 today (right?), Android just had its 8th birthday, and the rumor mill is firing on all cylinders in the lead-up to the October 4 launch event where they'll announce their latest hardware and software products.
The Pixel and Pixel XL both use AMOLED screens, which are noted for their deeper blacks and sharper contrast ratios when compared to traditional LCD panels. However, AMOLED displays still have one fairly major downside, and that's the fact that they're vulnerable to screen burn-in.
There's one thing that I've always liked about iPhones, and that's their centered digital clock in the status bar at the top of the screen. On Android, it's always on the right side by default, and there's no easy setting that lets you just change it to the center position. But if you have a Google Pixel XL, there's a simple modification you can perform to get exactly that—a centered status bar clock.
Google's got quite a few tricks up its sleeve with their Pixel and Pixel XL flagships, including functionality we've never seen before on Android. One awesome feature is called "App Shortcuts," and the basic premise is strikingly similar to Apple's 3D Touch—just long-press an app icon, then you'll get a pop-up that lets you perform quick actions.
Starting in October, many Nexus 6P users have been experiencing a bug that causes their phone to completely shut down, even though there was 20% or more battery life remaining. At first, it was thought to be a direct result of the recent Android Nougat update, but a combination of factors indicate that this isn't necessarily the case—or, at least, it's not the only problem.
Google's new Pixel and Pixel XL smartphones have a feature that puts their fingerprint scanners to use after you unlock your phone—just swipe down on the scanner from any screen, then you'll see your notifications. It keeps you from having to do hand gymnastics to reach the status bar at the top of your screen, and it gives you easy access to quick information, so it's a win-win.
Regardless of what they call them—be it Pixel or Nexus—Google's line of smartphones have a cool feature called "Ambient Display" that wakes your screen in a low-power black and white state when you receive a notification. This feature was added back when Google owned Motorola, as Moto's phones had a similar lock screen effect called "Active Display."
A few months ago, LlabTooFeR leaked a full system dump from Google's then-unreleased Pixel and Pixel XL smartphones. That may not seem like a big deal at first glance, but the system dump contained all of the preinstalled apps and services from Google's new flagships—including the much-anticipated Google Assistant.
For some strange reason, Google left several of the Pixel's best software features disabled by default. One of the more interesting tweaks that fall into this category is a gesture that puts your fingerprint scanner to use after you've unlocked your phone.
Android O has finally arrived—well, it's technically a beta version, but that isn't stopping Android enthusiasts from going crazy about it. The first Developer Preview was released earlier today and is available right now to install on Nexus and Pixel devices. While Android O doesn't have an official name or Android number yet (we're betting on "Android Oreo"), Google has released a feature list and a blog post explaining almost all of the new changes and features.
Today is the day you've been waiting for. At 9:00 a.m. PDT (12:00 p.m. EDT), Google announced a number of new products, including the new #MadeByGoogle Pixel smartphones and the Daydream VR headset.
Because of Android's massive array of supported smartphones that carry vastly different display sizes and resolutions, the operating system uses a value known as DPI to determine the size of icons and visual assets that will best suit a given screen.
Google's monthly Android security updates are generally welcome—at the very least, they provide a feeling of security that our device is now somewhat safer than it was 30 days ago. Vulnerability patches, slight enhancements to performance, and overall bug fixes are generally included in the monthly OTAs, but as it turns out, they're not always for the better.
Ready or not, the USB-C cable is about to take over your electronics. The new industry standard is fully reversible and packed with enough power to serve as a laptop charger or an HDMI cable, so it actually has the potential to replace every cord, wire, and connector in your house. In fact, the conversion has already started: The latest MacBook, Chromebook Pixel, and Nexus phones are sporting USB-C connectors out of the box.
If your phone has an AMOLED display, it doesn't waste any battery to power black portions of the screen. This is because the individual pixels that make up an AMOLED screen emit their own light, which means the backlight you'd find behind a traditional LCD screen is not present. In other words, showing a full-screen black image on an AMOLED phone is like turning your display completely off.
Give me a paintbrush and easel and you'll be sorely disappointed, but give me a Samsung Galaxy S3 and a new app called Let's 8-Bit Art and you might call me the next Picasso.
Dead or hot pixels are one of those annoying camera problems that won't make you buy a new camera but will piss you off for years. There's a free solution that may work for you though if you have a Canon 5D or 7D, and this video will show you how to do it with the sensor cleaning function.
A Pixel Qi (pronounced 'chee') screen allows for some really amazing display options when added to your netbook. This tutorial shows you how to remove the original screen and repalce it with this amazing new screen. All you really need is a screwdriver!
For years, smartphone makers have been caught up in a megapixel spec race to prove that their camera is better than the next guy's. But we've finally come to a point where even the lower-end camera phones are packing more megapixels than they need, so it's getting harder to differentiate camera hardware.
According to a study done by internet provider Tencent, a whopping 27.44% of Android users root their phones. With over 1.4 billion Android devices out there, that works out to somewhere in the neighborhood of 400 million rooted phones and tablets. In other words, there may very well be more rooted Android devices than there are Americans, so root nation is an important demographic that deserves being catered to.
Looking past the obvious visual similarities between the iPhone 7 and Google's new Pixel phones, there are several indications that the search giant had Apple in its sights as they released their latest flagships. For once, this isn't an Android phone we're talking about, it's a Google phone—and it showcases Google's latest strategy.
Your smartphone is pretty much with you every single day (every single moment for some people), so it's only a matter of time before it slips out of your hand and breaks or you spill coffee all over it. For some of you, it has already happened, perhaps even multiple times.
Cell phones—particularly smartphones—are inherently bad for privacy. You've basically got a tracking device in your pocket, pinging off cell towers and locking onto GPS satellites. All the while, the handset's data connection ensures that tracking cookies, advertising IDs, and usage stats follow you around the internet.
Video chatting has become an important factor in the overall smartphone experience. Even just a few years ago, 37% of teens were making video calls on a regular basis, and that number has surely grown. 85% of households with infants have used video chat apps to call relatives in other cities, and it's been shown that toddlers can create bonds and learn from visual cues in video calls.
The new Google Assistant is only officially available on three platforms—newer Android phones (Pixels and those running Marshmallow and Nougat), the Google Allo app, and Google Home. However, most of the Assistant's basic functionality is also bundled into the Google app for Android and iOS, which used to go by the name Google Now, but is now referred to only as Screen Search or your Google app's Feed.
Google's next-gen cellular carrier, Project Fi, is making waves across the mobile industry. With super-cheap plans starting at only $30, and the ability to connect to millions of Wi-Fi hotspots across the globe, it's tempting many users to make the switch from AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon Wireless.
Google's new Project Fi cellular carrier has been making waves across the mobile industry, so we decided to put it to the test against T-Mobile, one of the more established networks. For the actual testing, we slapped a SIM card from each carrier into two identical Pixel XL phones, which offer full compatibility with both networks.
Let's say you gave your Wi-Fi password to your neighbor a while back, under the assumption that they'd only use it while they were at your house sharing stuff via Chromecast. But now, your connection is slower than it normally should be, and you have this sneaking suspicion that the dude in apartment 3C is flat-out piggybacking off of your home network.
Google just released the developer preview for Android O, and we've already flashed it on every eligible device at our disposal, of course. This new version has plenty of changes in store, ranging from revamped looks to under-the-hood improvements, so there's tons of cool new stuff to explore.
Google's Pixel phones have a feature that lets you swipe down on the fingerprint scanner to open your notification shade and Quick Settings panel. It's one of those features that make you wonder why it wasn't there in the first place, since it gives you another way to interact with your device, and your fingerprint scanner isn't being used while you're screen is on anyway.
The OnePlus 3T was released about five months after the OnePlus 3 with several noticeable upgrades. Firstly, it has a new processor, the Qualcomm Snapdragon 821, which is the same one that the Pixel and Pixel XL sport. Second is the 16 MP front-facing camera with a different sensor. And the next big change was a slightly larger 3,400 mAh capacity battery.
Google's new Pixel phones will ship with Android 7.1 Nougat pre-installed, but early reports stated that Nexus devices wouldn't be getting the new version until "end of year" 2016. For people that purchased a Nexus 5X or 6P under the assumption that Nexus devices get Android updates first, the fact that the Pixels could be getting 7.1 a full two months ahead of them felt like a slap in the face.