Published: Sat, October 13, 2018
Tech | By Tabitha Holland

Google poised to unveil new Pixel phones, other services

Google poised to unveil new Pixel phones, other services

To go along with the new phones, it also announced the Google Home Hub, the Mi Box S and the Pixel Slate. That's one of the few that Google didn't specifically mention.

"We consciously did not put a camera on the Hub so you can use it in private spaces like your bedroom", she said.

From a functional standpoint, I like how this could possibly cut down on phone and tablet use in the house because so numerous things I'm checking on my phone can just be done with Google Home Hub. When I purchased this Macbook Pro, it was very different times, and my needs and how I can work with the inclusion of the cloud now is very different from before. I was downright surprised at how small Google's hub is: You can literally hold it in one hand.

Instead of hiding the controls deep in the Google Home app, a simple swipe down from the top of the screen brings up a dashboard with all your smart devices in a quick-access fashion, allowing you to control your connected stuff easily. That's a plus from a privacy perspective, although Lenovo and JBL do provide a physical camera cover.

Google Pixel Slate is a tablet that features a 12.3-inch display with a resolution of 3000x2000. Both Amazon and JBL are hitting the market at $349 - and we gather JBL has brought that down significantly from its original estimate, perhaps to match Amazon and get closer to Google's Home Hub, which will sell in Australia at an attractive $219. In fact, the sheer number of features it has elevates it beyond any of its competitors, including the Pixel 2.

In the Pixel 3 has a Top Shot, which chooses the best shot from a series of images using artificial intelligence and Super-Res Zoom that uses multiple frames and SHEA, so you can zoom in without losing quality. While Microsoft's Surface devices have a solid Windows desktop environment, it lacks the library of touch-friendly apps that Android and iOS offer.

No, I'm not talking about the cliche presentation phrases, over-reliance on pop music videos, and the use of celebrity feature endorsements - although those are all terribly irritating imitations too. Google Maps, Photos, and even YouTube have always been a pre-installed and useful extra part of Android, but they've never been a core selling point for a product.

Other than that, there's really just not a lot to say about the Home Hub.

They'll all start shipping from November 1st, 2019. So both phones have somewhat jarring front-facing designs. The new phones come with larger displays, better cameras, updated processors and also feature a new mobile security chip. Starting in Android 8.1 it got a search bar that made digging for individual settings a bit easier, and in Android N it got suggestions to help encourage you to enable things like a lock screen, finish the setup process, or explore additional customization options.

Google's new smart speaker, which has a display to show visual responses to voice commands, mostly matches offerings from Inc and Facebook Inc.

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