The Google team unveiled a handful of new products at it’s event in San Francisco yesterday. With the launch revealing their new phones Pixel and Pixel XL, the Google Home system, the Chromecast Ultra for 4K streaming, the Google Wifi promising better coverage and the Daydream View, a portable VR system.
Pixel 5″ and Pixel XL 5.5″ are available in ‘Very Silver’ or ‘Quite Black’ in Australia and both are equipped with a 12.3MP camera. Additionally to the best smartphone camera quality on the market, with a DxOMark Mobile score of 89, the Google phones also have a f/2.0 aperture and big 1.55 micron pixels to help capture more light for users.
It is available with a 32 GB or 126 GB memory, but keep in mind Google promised users they can store an unlimited amount of images and videos in Google Photos for free. The devices also come equipped with Google Assistant, similar to Apple’s Siri, which allows users to ask for a brief update on their day, interact with apps, check out the weather/traffic, locate and navigate to places and find photos/videos using voice commands.
As well as promising seven hours of battery life with just 15 minutes of charge, Pixel features a 2.5D Glass 4 cover and an aerospace grade aluminium body that includes a fingerprint sensor at the back of the device. The devices use Android 7.1 Nougat, promising to allow updates to install in the background without any interference to your device usage, and will also come with Google Duo and Allo to help you video call and text your other smartphone friends. Both Pixel and Pixel XL are available for preorder today from $1079 – $1419 depending on the model.
The Google Home system allows you to have a hands-free experience around your home. With the product promising to allow users to listen to and stream music from their mobile device with a simple voice command. The device also taps into Google Search and will be able “…to give you real-time answers to things you want to know.” Further the system can also tell you about your day from calendar events, to alarms and timers it can help remind you.
The device can also pair with other home systems (Philips Hue, Nest, Samsung SmartThings and IFTTT) to control your thermostats, lights and switches plus it can connect to your TV to stream videos. With Google promising if you purchase the Home system for $170 in November, you can purchase more than one device as it won’t mean they all will respond to your commands at once as, “If they have the same user account, only the closest one responds.”
The Chromecast Ultra is an improved version of their previous product Chromecast, promising that the new product has “4K and High Dynamic Range (HDR) support, faster speed and Wi-Fi improvements.” The small-round device uses a HDMI cord to plug into your portable device or TV to allow you to stream high quality 4K/HDR with Netflix, Youtube and Vudu initially before more content will be brought on board. With the increased Wi-Fi speed and improvements it promises to load videos 1.8 times faster, and even if your TV isn’t 4K-ready the device will automatically optimise it’s picture. The Chromecast Ultra will be available in November for around $90.
The Google Wifi is “a new connected Wi-Fi system designed to give you a fast signal in every room, on every device.” To prevent low signals, slow Wi-Fi and dead zones by introducing a ‘mesh network’ that is currently only seen in commercial use. The product creates a high-powered connection at different points around your home and uses these to connect and determine the best path for your data.
The product includes Network Assist technology to automatically connect your device with the optimal channel for your streaming as you roam around the house to avoid delays. Furthermore the new product has a companion app that helps users monitor each devices data usage and even disconnect or give preference to devices on the network. The product also has wireless encryption, verified boot, and auto updates for extra safety and is available for pre-order in November for $170.
The Daydream View is a high-quality mobile virtual reality product with the aim to simplify the whole process for users. With Google claiming, “It should be mobile so you can easily carry it with you, and it should be friendly and accessible so everyone can enjoy using it.” The company has done just that, taking a note out of Apple’s book by pairing the new VR reality headset with ‘Daydream-ready phones’ only.
Although currently Google’s phone’s Pixel and Pixel XL are the only compatible devices, it promises the product will pair with other high-performing Android phones in the future. From November you can slip your Google/Android phone into the headset for $119.