Before we get started, let’s get address the elephant in the room, shall we? Yes, the big Google event was yesterday. But sometimes life gets in the way, and until I can call this my day job, there will be times when we’re a bit behind on getting news out, at least until we get a few new authors on the team to help cover things like this.

At any rate, I appreciate you stopping by, so let’s get on to the real reason you’re here: The Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL are official, and they’re bound to be a contender for the top slot in the Best of Smartphone of 2017 race.

Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL

Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL Specs

Most of the leaks we’ve seen over the past few months were on point. The Pixel 2 is made by HTC, while the larger Pixel 2 XL is made by LG. According to folks who’ve already had hands-on time with the two devices say they’re so similar, you likely wouldn’t be able to tell they come from different manufacturers.

One notable difference is that the Pixel 2 display is AMOLED, while the Pixel 2 XL display is pOLED, meaning the Pixel 2 display is slightly less vibrant than the Pixel 2 XL. Otherwise, the two device pack identical specs, and the only other difference is size. The smaller version is 5-inches and the larger is 6.

Here’s the rest of the rundown:

  • Snapdragon 835 Processor
  • 4GB of RAM
  • 64GB or 128GB of storage
  • Single 12.2 MP rear camera with OIS
  • Android 8.0
  • Dual front-facing speakers
  • Fingerprint sensor around back

What’s new with the Pixel 2 camera?

Both Pixel 2 phones have a 12.2 MP sensor with 1.4 μm pixels and a f/1.8 aperture. Those specs are backed up by advanced software that features machine learning to allow the devices to capture stunning portrait style shots with just a single lens. Most of 2017’s flagships offer similar functionality but require a dual-camera setup to achieve the intended results.

The camera also takes ‘motion photos’, where each photo you take comes with a short video taken before and after the shot. This is intriguing to me, as it seems like it will eat up a lot of internal storage, but there will likely be an option to disable this feature, should you choose to.

Speaking of storage, the good news here is that you get free, unlimited Google Photos original-quality storage for photos and videos taken with the Pixel 2 through the end of 2020, and free, unlimited high-quality storage for photos taken with the Pixel 2 afterward. So, why not get creative and give those motion photos a try, right?

Pixel 2 video stabilization

Rounding out the camera, it also has what Google is dubbing “fused video stabilization” which combines both OIS and EIS for amazingly smooth results, as you can see in the video above.

What about the headphone jack?

It’s gone. Don’t bitch about it, or Cliff will go off on another tangent. There is, however, a USB-C to 3.5mm adapter in the box with the Pixel 2.

Any other cool new features?

Yes, there’s a bunch, actually, which we’ll cover in greater detail in the days and weeks to come, but for now, here’s a quick look at the highlights.

  • IP67 rated waterproof (yay!)
  • Google Lens – Google’s AI-powered object recognition platform
  • Active Edge – Squeeze the sides of the device to activate Google Assistant
  • eSIM, or electronic SIM card, that allows you to connect to a network with no physical SIM card
  • 3 years of guaranteed OS updates from Google (all the way to Android R!)

Where can I buy it and when can I get it?

The Pixel 2 ($649) and Pixel 2 XL ($849) are both already up for pre-order on the Google Play Store. They ship October 19th. You can also get them through Verizon – the only US carrier partner, yet again.

Will Android Unfiltered have a Pixel 2 to review?

You’re damn right we will! I pre-ordered mine today – the black 64 GB Pixel 2. The XL was a bit pricey for my budget right now, but hey – at least I’ll have one of the two models to call my own, right?

There’s likely some information I missed in this post – and for that, I do apologize. I had to play catch-up here myself, as I didn’t even get to watch the event live, due to day job responsibilities. I’ll make it up to you with plenty of in-depth coverage once my phone arrives in about two weeks time. Pinky promise!