How useful are the new exclusive features of Pixel 7?

How useful are the new exclusive features of Pixel 7?

the pixel 7 Y Pixel 7 Pro they are the latest flagship devices from Google. To make its new phones stand out, the company has bundled them with a bunch of exclusive features that are made possible by the second-generation Tensor chip that powers the Pixel 7’s insides. Some are really helpful. For example, automatic cough and snoring detection confirmed what others said about my sleeping habits. The new Direct My Call capability will also be beneficial when it comes to customer service lines.

Whether they make the Pixel 7/7 Pro worth buying over Samsung and OnePlus’ perfectly fine Android flagships is ultimately up to you. For me, some of the features are still missing. Here’s my quick assessment of how some of them work.

Cough and snoring detection

Photo: Florence Ion/GizmodoPhoto: Florence Ion/Gizmodo

It’s easy to find this feature in the settings panel of your Pixel 7. Use the search bar and type “cough and snoring” or tap on the digital wellbeing Control Panel. If this is your first time accessing the feature, you will see a dialog at the bottom asking if you want to configure it.

Once you give the feature access to the microphone, your phone will listen while you cough and snore during the night. I’m already a little embarrassed that it caught me three days after turning it on. If you want to see your results, you can access them through the Clock app.

Once again, I am very embarrassed about my snoring score. It seems that the nights I go to bed feeling the most tired are when I snore the loudest. 5/5this function works.

Pixel Watch as a trusted device

Photo: Florence Ion/GizmodoPhoto: Florence Ion/Gizmodo

If you’re going to spend the starting price of $350 ($486) for the Pixel Watch, you can also set it up as a trusted device with Android’s built-in Smart Lock. Smart Lock uses Bluetooth on both devices to establish a connection and then unlock the device. It’s quick to set up in the Android settings panel. Tap on Security > More security settings > smart lock > trusted devices. You are at the right place if you see a page that displays a clock animation. Tap on Add trusted deviceand choose your Pixel Watch from the list.

Once set up, the Pixel Watch will keep your phone unlocked after you’ve entered your security credentials for the first time. It makes the unlocking process much faster, especially if you’re sitting at your desk with your watch on and your phone nearby. Note that this is a built-in feature in Android 13, so it’s likely to come to other devices in the future.

I had to enter my PIN about three times on the Pixel 7 Pro unit I’m using with my Pixel Watch review unit. After that, the phone stayed unlocked every time I picked it up from the Pixel Stand 2, which was sitting on my desk. You’ll see a little note at the bottom of your lock screen that says Kept unlocked by Smart Lock when it is working. I’ll give you a 3.5/5 since I had to unlock the phone several times before it got stuck.

please direct my call

Photo: Florence Ion/GizmodoPhoto: Florence Ion/Gizmodo

Calling a company with an automated menu is painful, especially if you’re already upset about the service. The improved performance of direct my call on the Pixel 7 it will transcribe what the automated voice says on the other end, so you don’t have to hold the phone to your ear. You can even read forward to move through the menu faster, which should alleviate some discomfort.

In the Phone app, tap Plus > Settingsthen tap on direct my call. Select the switch to turn it on. Now when you call a customer service line from the Pixel’s Dialer app, you’ll be routed through this service, as long as Google supports the company.

I called my giant conglomerate bank about three times to test Direct My Call after enabling it in the settings panel. It worked every time, although I felt like I was calling the bank’s AI. I’ll give this one a 4/5 because I expect it to fail as soon as I have to make a phone call to a smaller company that Google hasn’t tested with this feature.

blur photo

Photo: Florence Ion/GizmodoPhoto: Florence Ion/Gizmodo

Photo Unblur is available to Pixel 7/7 Pro users currently, as Google says the in-house chip inside the smartphone is what facilitates the capability. It’s the evolution of Face Unblur introduced with the Pixel 6, which, as you may have guessed, restores faces and brings back some composition. Photo Unblur is an editing option through the Google Photos app, but you’ll only see it appear if you have compatible hardware.

It took me a long time to find a working photo to illustrate what this feature does. Google swears it works with photos taken by other cameras. I’m still not sure I’ve managed to figure it out. Photo Unblur en supposed to sharpen the photo so the image doesn’t look so soft. But it barely worked on the four photos I tried with it, all of them out of focus and taken with other cameras. I give him a 1/5 — is not zero because I have seen it work for other devices. Please leave a comment if you get it to work, and maybe we can improve this score.

Active Stabilization

Photo: Florence Ion/GizmodoPhoto: Florence Ion/Gizmodo

Google wants you to use the maximum 4K resolution video recording capabilities of the Pixel 7 and 7 Pro. But it will want to enable Active Stabilization, so video looks smooth and is shareable.

You can enable this feature in the camera app by swiping over to video recording mode, then tapping the little handshake icon in the bottom right corner. Select Active for the video stabilization option if you plan to take the Pixel 7/7 Pro on a jet ski or horseback, somewhat shaky and unstable.

My life hasn’t been very exciting, so I haven’t been able to fully test Active Stabilization skills. But for walking down the street, when I’m filming my daily mental health walk, I can say that it stabilizes the image so you can’t tell how much bounce it is. A solid 3.5/5 until I get on a jet ski to try it.

cinematic mode

Gif: Florence Ion / GizmodoGif: Florence Ion / Gizmodo

Cinematic mode isn’t as pristine as it is on the iPhone. But it increases the bokeh effect in the background of a video so there’s more depth if you’re close to an object.

To enable it, slide to Cinematic Mode in the Camera app, then record your video. You’ll notice in the preview window that objects around your main focus point are slightly blurred as if you were taking a Portrait mode photo.

Cinematic mode is fine, but it will take a bit of learning to figure out where to use it best. So far I find it useful for taking emo mechanical keyboard clips for social media. other solid 3.5/5 since it still hasn’t got anything on Apple’s equivalent mode for the iPhone.

guided frame

Photo: Florence Ion/GizmodoPhoto: Florence Ion/Gizmodo

The Pixel 7/7 Pro is the first to offer an accessibility feature called guided frame, which effectively guides visually impaired people to take a selfie with the help of Assistant. But to use the feature, you’ll need to enable another accessibility feature called TalkBack.

In the Settings app, tap Accessibility > replicate and then turn it on. You’ll know it’s on when you hear the phone dictate every touch you make. It can be a bit overwhelming initially if you are not used to the feature.

Once TalkBack is enabled, immediately go to the Google Camera app to take the selfie. It’ll take a bit of time to get there with the usual method, since TalkBack requires you to double-tap each interface element; the first tap announces what the button does, and the second tap actually does it the thing.

I like the idea of ​​the guided frame, but it’s definitely a feature meant for taking a selfie. He is not an art director. This isn’t Android’s way of framing your face as perfectly as possible; it’s just making sure the camera has you clear in the frame in case you can’t see it yourself. I give this a 5/5.

Automatic transcription of audio messages

Photo: Florence Ion/GizmodoPhoto: Florence Ion/Gizmodo

Alright, this isn’t going to be a Pixel 7/7 Pro exclusive much longer since Google Announced would come to the Pixel 6 and select Samsung’s flagship devices. But it is worth knowing.

If you send or review voice messages, or notes, as they’re casually called, whether from your friends using iPhone or from a family member on another Android device, the Messages app will transcribe the audio before you hear it. It works pretty well, though you do have to open the Messages app and allow the transcription feature to kick in before you broadcast anything. The capability is available in English, Japanese, German, and French.

I tried this feature from my iPhone 14 Pro Max review unit. I sent a voicemail to the Pixel 7 Pro review unit. It took about a minute to process. The punctuation was a bit off in the last transcript, but I still had the basic gist of the voicemail before I could listen. 5/5

Leave a Comment