Every year, people will compare the Nexus / Pixel hardware specs leaks and put it against other recent / flagship phones from Samsung and rest.
So let’s look back at the Google Pixel 2 / XL and see what was even special about it that was touted by Google at the actual launch
– Processor – standard top end. not special but ok.
– Screen – OLED and LCD. top end but apparently could be better as LG panels weren’t that good yet
– RAM – so so, not the highest, just under.
– Camera – touted. hardware supposedly better to work better with less cameras required. But software was heavily touted with enhanced portrait mode, enhanced HDR, motion pics.
– Squeezable Edge – rather gimmicky. not a clear diffentiator – Samsung-esque lame
– ARCore – AR stickers
– Google Lens – early release
– Free photo storage – 2 years free Google Photos
– auto song recognition
So do any of that make it worth it?? Hardware wise – I don’t think it was super better than any other top phone. But then, that’s it isn’t it, it depends on what China can produce for everyone.
Software wise – ARCore was ok but not life changing, it was fun to play with and show off but did’t go viral, Google Lens was fun but not viral either, Free photo storage is super appreciated but apparently not enough to sway the Samsungnites and Apples, processor and screen meh, camera quality great but not enough to sway too? song recognition is super fun.
So what else would still make the Pixel different from other phones?
– more better software like the camera and AR stuff? is it worth $100 more each?
– more free photo storage? – is this worth the maybe USD200 (estimate 1 TB used x 2 years)
– more early google apps and services? – for early adopters and nerds
Intangibles that people don’t realise
– super fast updates
– additional security chip – not heavily advertised
– Pixel Visual Core – underwhelming
– higher grade warranty promise, esp in US
– quite smooth performance, consistent over time
– no bloat, just because.
– Google Assistant super integrated. You like it or you hate it and can’t get rid of it.
– still no headphone jack
– poorer warranty support and repair in non-US country
– fewer purchase avenues
– fewer accessories like cases
– not cheap
I wouldn’t necessarily say that Pixel is the ultimate phone if you’re not into pure google services. But the hardware is just table stakes and the software/apps and support is the icing that is the differentiator.
So it’s to be expected that the Pixel 3 XL leaks seem meh.
How do I still like my Pixel 2 XL?
– still too big, if only they sold the Pixel 2 in Singapore with warranty I would have chosen that
– performance – super good
– headphone jack – still super annoying
– physical state – still super good
– the small gimmicky stuff – usually all v fun to me. not really tangibles but worth the fun.
Worth it compared to other phones?
– about $100-$200 too expensive otherwise a confirm recommend to anyone.
What other normal ppl need
– something cheaper, yet secure, yet reliable
– less frills, more dependency, security and reliability.
What the instagrammers need
– nothing, they can go buy iphones just because they can’t be seen without one
Should they sell a Pixel Watch – no
Pixel Book – no, too ex
Pixel Speaker – the Google Home, yes
What they need to push in services
– much better music streaming service with cheaper price, global availability
– a serious Google One service with proper perks, support, branding, marketing and benefits
– monetize the storage pricing and provide more services and branding to this
– put Google Photos front and center and integrate more
– same for Maps
– forget about RCS messaging
– exclusive integrations for only Pixels, otherwise all phones are getting the same Google apps what’s the point