Here’s why Google Pixel 2 is more exciting than the iPhone X

Google Pixel and Pixel XL were excellent phones—possibly the best overall Android phones on the market, in fact. So, Google has a lot of live up to with the Pixel 2, which is set for announcement on October 4th, where new versions of the firm’s Pixel and Pixel XL will be unveiled.

I’m more excited for Google’s smartphone event on Oct. 4 than I am for the launch of the new iPhone X. Three iPhone’s were unveiled, including the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X. No surprises there, aside from the naming scheme. The two iPhone 8 models are minor upgrades to the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus. The iPhone X looks exactly like every leaked image that cropped up all year, and what might have been surprises, like Face ID, were expected.

Don’t get me wrong. I look forward to seeing it in person and maybe even buying one, but there really wasn’t anything we didn’t know about, and the whole unveiling was kind of yawn-worthy. We even knew that the phone wouldn’t launch in September (which is still a bummer.) The Apple Watch Series 3 and Apple TV 4K were also leaked ahead of the event.

Google’s Pixel 2, on the other hand, still remains a mystery. The only reports I’ve seen suggest that the smaller model will be built by HTC, which manufactured both models of the Pixel this year. A larger Pixel 2 Plus (or whatever it might be named) will be built by LG, according to rumors.

It might not offer a fancy edge-to-edge display (or maybe it will?) but it will run Google’s new Android Oreo operating system that looks more powerful and clean than ever before. Also, Google recently announced its own augmented reality tools, which I hope are discussed during the event.

Unlike Apple, Google is expected to adopt Qualcomm’s latest modems that support next-generation Gigabit LTE networks, too. That means, as all U.S. carriers start rolling out networks with much faster data speeds (think 5x -to 10x faster than current speeds), you’ll be able to use them. My guess is Google will talk a bit about VR, too, which Apple has yet to discuss.

But mostly, I’m excited because I don’t really know much at all about what Google has in store. Whatever it gets up on stage and announces will be a surprise. That’s exactly the opposite of what happened during Apple’s iPhone 8 and iPhone X event.

Critics warmly received the original Google Pixel in 2016 – and according to some reports, notable upgrades to this year’s device will include the addition of optical image stabilization (OIS) to the rear camera for the first time to reduce the number of blurred photos being snapped. It completes a busy period for smartphone announcements with Samsung, LG and Sony having all introduced new devices in September.

The LG-made Pixel 2 XL will come in a “Black & White & Kinda Blue” colorway (pictured above) that might be the hottest panda colorway we’ve ever seen. The phone will also arrive in “Just Black,” and be available with 64GB or 128GB storage. The 64GB model will cost $849, while the 128GB model will jump to $949.

Google will offer financing as well. The 64GB Pixel 2 XL will cost $35.38/mo over 24 months and the 128GB version will jump to $39.54/mo.

The Pixel 2 is expected to feature Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 835 processor and react to new squeeze gestures similar to the HTC U11; HTC is manufacturing the smaller Pixel 2, but both phones are rumored to have the gestures.

Specs & Features

As mentioned above, we actually have pretty much had the specs since last June. In short, expect the Snapdragon 835 (not the Snapdragon 836) and 4GB RAM. The XL version will have a 1440p 6 inch screen and the non-XL version will have a 1080p 5 inch screen. We also have learned of some pretty cool features! Always on ambient display will finally be coming to stock Android, a squeezable frame (like the HTC U11) and there may also be a new system font coming!

Keep an eye out on October 4th for all the details. Read full roundup here

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