Review of the Google Pixel 8 Pro. A thorough examination

Uncovering the Brilliance of Google Pixel 8 Pro: A Comprehensive Review

Pros

  • Seven years of security updates
  • Lots of new camera features
  • The matte finish is appealing

Cons

  • It is stuck at 12GB storage
  • Expensive

The Pixel 8 Pro, Google’s latest release, builds upon the foundation set by the Pixel 6 Pro. It emphasizes AI processing and intelligent features, aiming to establish itself as one of the top Android smartphones available. This device is designed to offer a premium Android experience to consumers.

The Pixel 8 Pro takes an evolutionary approach, prioritizing refinements rather than dramatic changes. It introduces an AI-centric chip, which empowers various intelligent features, such as advanced photo editing and webpage summarization. These enhancements contribute to the device’s overall capabilities and user experience.

The latest additions to Google’s lineup are truly exciting. The Google Pixel 8 Pro promises to be a standout flagship, offering remarkable features and performance.

Alongside it, the Pixel Buds Pro delivers exceptional audio quality and intelligent features, enhancing the listening experience. Additionally, the much-anticipated Pixel Watch 2 is set to make its debut, further expanding Google’s ecosystem of smart devices.  

These new arrivals demonstrate Google’s commitment to providing a comprehensive and seamless tech experience for its users.

Google is increasing the Pixel 8 Pro’s price by $100, now at $999, up from $899. It’s disappointing that the base storage remains 128GB, unlike Apple’s 256GB option for the $1,199 iPhone 15 Pro Max.

Pixel 8 and Pixel 8 Pro preorders start on October 4, followed by general availability on October 12. Pixel 8 Pro offers storage options of 256GB, 512GB, and 1TB, priced at $1,059, $1,119, and $1,219, respectively.

The tech giant boasts of an excellent video boost beating other contenders in the tech space. Additionally, the Google Pixel Watch 2 is a key feature of the new pixel.

Specs

Display resolution1,344 x 2,992
Refresh rate1 – 120Hz adaptive
Rear cameras50MP main + 48MP ultrawide + 48MP telephoto (5x zoom)
Price$999
Display6.7-inch Super Actua Display (OLED)
ChipsetGoogle Tensor G3
RAM12GB
Storage128GB/256GB/512GB

Colors and design

Additional features comprise the Titan M2 security coprocessor, elevating Face Unlock security on Pixel 8 Pro. It includes 12GB LPDDR5X RAM and storage choices of 128GB, 256GB, and 512 GB.

I’m concerned about Google’s design choice, returning to a single glass panel for the triple camera setup. The Pixel 6 Pro’s two separate pieces of glass were a welcome change. Returning to a single piece makes the cameras vulnerable, so consider a camera cover case.

The Pixel 8 Pro’s design remains familiar but is well-crafted with a satisfying feel. It maintains the expected premium features like an IP68 rating. While additional color options would be appreciated, the bay option is the most appealing.

Temperature sensor

The Pixel 8 Pro’s design remains familiar but is well-crafted with a satisfying feel. It maintains the expected premium features like an IP68 rating. While additional color options would be appreciated, the bay option is the most appealing. The sensor isn’t for body temperature but for objects. You must specify the material for accuracy.

The sensor works at a 2-inch range, limiting practicality. Laser temperature guns, thermal cameras, and other thermometers are more effective alternatives.

Display

The Pixel 7 Pro had a dim display. Google improves it with the 6.7-inch, 1,344 x 2,992 Super Actua Display in the Pixel 8 Pro, offering up to 1,600 nits with HDR brightness and 2,400 nits’ peak brightness.

The Pixel 8 Pro’s specifications appear significantly improved compared to the Pixel 7 Pro’s 927 nits. We’re eager to confirm these claims to compete with the iPhone 15 Pro Max’s 1,550 nits. A 42% brightness boost needs testing, and I’m optimistic, considering past issues with the Pixel 7 Pro’s visibility in sunlight.

Despite the 20:9 aspect ratio hindering one-handed use, the display is sharp and bright. OLED brings vivid colors, wide viewing angles, and deep blacks. The up to 120Hz Super Actua Display offers a buttery-smooth experience while navigating Android 14.

Camera

The Pixel 8 Pro stands out from the standard Pixel 8 with its triple camera setup. It includes a 50MP main camera, a 48MP ultrawide camera, and a 48MP telephoto with 5x optical zoom. The notable upgrades are the 48MP ultrawide and the 5x zoom camera, setting the Pixel 8 Pro apart from the Pixel 8.

Google missed a chance to improve the telephoto camera; it remains at 5x, just like the iPhone 15 Pro Max. This decision eliminates a potential advantage for Google.

Improved camera capabilities promise superior low-light performance, sharper selfies, and enhanced zoom. Excitingly, the Pixel 8 Pro introduces new photo and video features, marking a shift towards “pro” photography features in the Pixel line. Google is expanding its camera prowess.

Manual controls for photos and videos provide enhanced creative freedom with ISO, shutter speed, and more. The introduction of 24fps video capture brings a cinematic look to the Pixel 8 Pro. Additionally, the option to shoot in both JPEG and RAW formats expands creative possibilities for users, especially content creators.

Google has responded to user requests, introducing sought-after features to the Pixel 8 Pro. Moreover, the Pixel 8 Pro boasts additional capabilities that transform it into a personal photo and video editing tool. Here’s a breakdown of these features.

  • Best Take, a Photoshop-like feature, simplifies family photos by selecting the best faces automatically. It uses Google’s AI to analyze multiple shots and offers face options for an ideal outcome. You can ensure everyone has a great expression in the final picture.
  • Magic Editor like Magic Eraser, isolates subjects and seamlessly repositions them within photos. In a demo, it brought a kid closer to a basketball hoop that was initially out of reach. Magic Editor offers creative flexibility for image manipulation.
  • Audio Magic Eraser on the Pixel 8 Pro reduces or removes background noises from recorded videos. It analyzes audio to identify unwanted sounds, such as alarms, and minimizes or eliminates them. The feature ensures videos contain only desired audio.

The Pixel 8 Pro introduces numerous innovative camera features. Surprisingly, it’s the first Pixel built with professional users in mind. The final verdict will depend on the camera’s real-world performance to secure its position among the best camera phones. 

Software

Android 14 offers some anticipated features, with exclusive enhancements on the Pixel 8 Pro. The user interface retains familiarity, especially for long-time Android users. Google’s AI plays a more significant role in the software’s functionality.

Google Assistant plays an expanded role in distinguishing the Pixel from other Android devices. Notably, here are the aspects of Google Assistant on the Pixel 8 Pro that impressed me:

Fix It: Chrome users with grammar check extensions, like Grammarly, can enjoy the “Fix It” feature in Google Assistant. While typing, you can choose to correct grammar errors with the Assistant, which proofreads your text and identifies common mistakes, like “their/there/there.” It’s a helpful tool for improving writing quality.

Call screen: The Pixel 8 Pro introduces advanced call screening with a remarkably human-like Assistant voice. It not only screens calls but also offers contextual response options, resembling a real assistant managing your calls and responses effectively. The AI-generated voice is convincingly lifelike.

Multiple language support with dictation: This feature is particularly beneficial in multilingual households. It allows users to seamlessly mix languages when dictating messages to Assistant without adjusting the keyboard’s default language. You can simply speak, and the Assistant will transcribe the message accurately, simplifying communication in diverse language environments.

Get summaries from Google Assistant: Avoid the effort of reading long passages by initiating the summarizing feature with a phone squeeze. Google Assistant analyzes content and creates a concise, bulleted summary of crucial information.

Google’s investment in AI is evident in these features, but the standout is its commitment to software support. The Pixel 8 and 8 Pro set a new standard with Google’s promise of 7 years of software and security updates, prolonging their life compared to other devices. This demonstrates the significance of ongoing software support in the smartphone industry.

Performance

The Google Tensor G3 is touted as the company’s most powerful chip. However, it needs to demonstrate its capabilities against competitors like Apple’s A17 Pro and Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 to validate this claim.

The complexity of the largest machine learning model in the Pixel 8 Pro, being 10 times more advanced than the Pixel 6, might not be a major concern. This enhanced complexity shines through various Google AI-assisted features, such as natural language response with call screening and the intelligent removal of background noise with Magic Audio Eraser.

The Pixel 8 Pro’s real test lies in its performance in everyday tasks and comparisons to competitors. I’ll gauge its video rendering speed compared to the Galaxy S23 Ultra and its performance in graphically intensive games about the iPhone 15 Pro Max. A comprehensive assessment will provide a clearer picture of its capabilities.

Battery

The Pixel 8 Pro boasts a 5,050mAh battery for “beyond 24-hour battery life” and faster 30W wired charging, an upgrade from the Pixel 7 Pro’s 27W. Wireless charging maintains 23W with the Pixel Stand and 12W with Qi-certified chargers.

Google provided limited information about the Pixel 7 Pro, and its performance depends on the power efficiency of the Tensor G3 chip and the Super Actua Display. With a slightly increased 5,050mAh battery compared to the Pixel 7 Pro, the device aims to achieve extended battery life comparable to other top-ranking phones on the best phone battery life list.

The Pixel 8 Pro maintains the same 23W wireless charging with the 2nd gen Pixel Stand and 12W with standard Qi wireless charging. While this could have been enhanced, Google states that a 30W charger can provide up to 50% charge in approximately 30 minutes.

Outlook

The hardware isn’t a significant leap forward, leaving room for improvement in competing with rivals. The Pixel 8 Pro feels and operates like a typical Pixel phone, raising questions about its performance against key competitors. There’s potential for enhancement to match or surpass the competition in crucial aspects.

Google deserves praise for creating a “pro” phone with features for power users. The advanced capabilities of Google’s AI outshine Siri, shifting the focus towards software rather than hardware. The emphasis on software improvements enhances the overall user experience.

The $100 price hike makes the Pixel 8 Pro less competitive, even though price increases are widespread. It remains more affordable than similar flagships like the Galaxy S23 Ultra and iPhone 15 Pro Max. The question now is whether the Pixel 8 Pro justifies its higher price with its performance.