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Google Pixel 2, Pixel 2 XL launch: Live stream timing, how to watch, expected specs, etc

The Indian Express logo The Indian Express 02-10-2017

Google’s big hardware event is happening on October 4 in San Francisco, and it will see the launch of Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL .The original Pixel phones were made by Google, designed by the company on its own, though HTC was the OEM. Now the company is ready to unveil a new set of phones – Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL.

Not just new smartphones, the software giant is likely to launch a lot more devices, including a high-end Pixelbook, Daydream View 2 VR headset, and a Home Mini speaker. Google has an expertise in designing software, but a tighter control over the design and manufacturing of smartphones and other devices will help company to compete with Apple. The Pixel smartphones are pitched as alternatives to the ‘premium’ iPhone. Here are all the big devices that will debut for the first time on October 4 at the company’s hardware event.

Google Pixel 2 event starts at 9:00 am (Pacific Time), which translates to around 9:30 PM (India Standard Time). Google Pixel 2 launch event will be live-streamed online through the official YouTube channel for the company. Else users can follow for the latest updates. There are no specific hardware requirements to watch the livestream and users will able to watch event on YouTube.

Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL

Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL will be the main highlight of the event. Both phones have been leaked quite a few times on the internet so we already know a lot about them. Like the original Pixel and Pixel XL, the new phones will be designed in-house. Pixel 2 will be manufactured by HTC, which Google recently agreed to buy the company’s engineering and design teams for $1.1 billion. This means the original Pixel team, which is now a part of Google, will continue to develop the new phones.

Google Pixel 2 will come in two colours and will look closer to the original Pixel in terms of design. Expect the Pixel 2 to have the same two-tone finish, rounded corners and similar size. According to reports, the HTC-made Pixel 2 is expected to get a minor upgrade over the original phone. An alleged render of the Pixel 2 shows thick bezels on top and bottom and there’s no dual-camera setup as well.

Interestingly, the Pixel 2 will come with Active Edge feature, which is said to work in a similar fashion as HTC’s EdgeSense. The feature will let you launch Google Assistant with the squeeze. As for specifications, Google Pixel 2 will have a Full HD display, a Snapdragon 835 processor, 4GB RAM, and either 64GB or 128GB storage. It will ship with Android 8.0 Oreo out of the box.

There’s a rumour floating that Google will drop a 3.5mm headphone jack from its 2017 Pixel lineup. Pixel 2 is rumoured to cost $649 (or approx Rs 42,460) for the 64GB storage option and $749 (or approx Rs 49,003) for the 128GB variant.

Next up is the Pixel 2 XL. This is going to be a flagship smartphone that will take on the likes of Apple iPhone X, Samsung Galaxy Note 8 and Huawei’s upcoming Mate 10 Pro. Pixel 2 XL will be manufactured by LG, which has previously worked on the Nexus 4, Nexus 5 and Nexus 5X smartphones. However, unlike the Pixel 2, the Pixel 2 XL will drop thick bezels in favor of an edge-to-edge display.

Other leaked specifications include a 5.99-inch AMOLED (QHD, 18:9) display, a Snapdragon 835 processor, 4GB RAM, and 128GB storage. The phone also ships with the latest Android 8.0 Oreo out of the box. Pixel 2 XL is said to cost $849 (or approx Rs 55,554) for the base storage variant and $949 (or approx Rs 62,008) for the top-end model.

Google PixelBook and Pixel Pen

Google might be preparing to launch the Pixelbook, a high-end Chromebook. The Pixelbook should be seen as a top-notch Chromebook Pixel – with a different branding. With the Pixelbook, Google will once again try to prove that its Chrome OS can be used by the mainstream crowd, something that hasn’t happened yet. Chromebooks are ridiculously cheap, perhaps the reason they have been accepted well in the classrooms in the US.

Google Pixelbook is said to be a premium metal bodied Chromebook that can also fold into a tablet and will support an optional pressure-sensitive stylus, dubbed the “Pixel Pen”. It will come in three storage options: 128GB, 256GB and 512GB according to leaks. And yes, for the first time, Google will add the Assistant to Chromebooks.

Like any other Chromebook, the Pixelbook will most likely run on Chrome OS. However, Google Pixelbook won’t come cheap. A high-performance Pixelbook is said to cost upwards of $1,199 (or approx Rs 78,444), which can be compared to a price of Apple MacBook Pro.

Google Daydream View 2 and Home Mini

Google’s hardware event on October 4 will likely welcome the second-generation Daydream View 2 headset. A new VR headset has been planned by Google that will replace the original Daydream View, which can be purchased for Rs 6499 in India. While we still don’t know much about its features, Google Daydream View 2 will come in a few colour choices and a motion controller.

The software giant is also planning to bring a miniature version of Google Home. Essentially, Google Home Mini will be competing with the Echo Dot, Amazon’s most affordable smart speaker. The Mini will be a small sized intelligent speaker with a built-in Google Assistant. It is said to be priced at just $49 (or approx Rs 3205).

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