Google’s long-awaited Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL are here but there’s little to get excited about on first-impressions, simply because the phones leaked so profusely before launch.
So much information spewed forth ahead of the company’s October 2019 keynote, where Google unveiled a number of new products alongside the Pixel 4 phones. The company may have poured fuel on the fire with the dark shot reveal shot it teased out some months back, but it’s fair to assume that Google never intended for so much information surrounding its upcoming flagship phones to creep out ahead of their official unveiling.
We’ve already got a rundown of the best Pixel 4 and 4 XL deals in the works, so keep your eyes peeled there if you want to snap up a Pixel 4 at a discount, and read our Pixel 4 review to find out what we think of the phone.
Google Pixel 4 Key Features
As mentioned by the YouTubers that got their hands on a prototype device a couple of months back, the glass and metal form of the Pixel 4 lineup is launching in Just Black, Clearly White and Oh So Orange.
As expected, the phones feature a dual-lens rear camera, a 90Hz ‘Smooth Display’, a Snapdragon 855 chipset, 6GB of RAM and 128GB storage, not to mention some notably chunky bezels that we’d hoped were going to have slimmed down ahead of launch – that doesn’t appear to be the case.
As previously confirmed by Google, two standout new features found on its latest flagships are Motion Sense and Face Unlock. The former uses Soli, the company’s own radar-based motion-sensing technology, to recognise gestures when you’re nearby. You’re able to skip songs, snooze alarms and silence phone calls with a wave of the hand. Soli also helps Face Unlock work much faster, by switching on the sensor as you reach for the phone.
The new Pixels also ditch the Pixel Imprint rear-mounted fingerprint sensors of their predecessors, instead, following in the footsteps of the iPhone X – with Face Unlock as the primary means of biometric authentication.
Pixel 4 isn’t the first new Google phone we’ve seen this year. In May, Google unveiled its Pixel 3a and 3a XL at Google I/O, serving as more affordable alternatives to the then-flagship
Under the hood, there’s Android 10, which focuses on innovation, privacy, security, and digital wellbeing, alongside a Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 chipset (sadly not the faster 855+) and 6GB of RAM.
With this processor integrating support for 5G networks (by way of an additional modem) we were hoping to see a 5G Pixel make an appearance at launch, but it seems Google thought better, considering the implications on both price and design such functionality would bring.
Last year’s Pixel Visual Core has been replaced by what Google is now calling the Pixel Neural Core, which as its name suggest, helps with AI-tasks to perform feats such as real-time transcription, exclusively on-device.
There are still two storage options to choose between – 64GB and 128GB (with no expandability), while both phones also come with surprisingly small battery capacities, despite their physical size. There’s a 2800mAh battery inside the 4 and the Pixel 4 XL totes a 3700mAh cell – both also sport 18W fast wired and wireless charging.
Contrary to predictions made by XDA that suggested the Pixel 4 would offer true dual-SIM support, it appears that both models retain the secondary eSIM setup of their predecessors, meaning only one SIM can be active at a time.
When is the Pixel 4 coming out?
Both phones launched at the company’s ‘Made by Google’ 2019 event in October and are available to buy now.
How much does the Pixel 4 cost?
Similar to Apple this year, the Pixel 4 and 4 XL actually come in marginally cheaper compared to last year’s Pixel 3 and 3 XL, which launched at £739 and £869, respectively for the base models ( buy here). The Pixel 4 starts at £669/$799 for the 64GB model and costs £769/$899 for the 128GB SKU, while the 4 XL starts at £829/$899 and also costs £100/$100 to double the storage.
It’s also worth noting that the Oh So Orange version of both sizes of Pixel 4, which is considered a special edition, can only be had with 64GB of internal storage.
Read next: Best New Phones Coming in 2020