The black camera block provides a pleasing contrast to the white or orange backs, and the black ring around the perimeter of the phone ties it all together pleasantly.
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The back really is handsome. While the sides are eventually aluminum, you won't be touching any bare metal when you hold the Pixel 4. The sides have what Google calls a "matte finish hybrid coating," which just feels like a hard plastic shell. It doesn't seem any grippier than anodized aluminum, so I'm not sure why Google bothered.
As usual, the front design for the Pixel line looks dated this year. The Pixel 4 has a sizable bezel only on the top of the device, which gives the phone a lopsided, top-heavy look.
Google Pixel 4 Summary
Most phones have aimed to reduce the bezels as much as possible, going for only a minimal camera blemish or, sometimes, no blemish at all. But not Google. The Pixel 4 design reminds me of the Galaxy S8, a phone that came out two years ago, and the stats back that up. The Pixel 4 has an There's also a Google-developed Soli radar sensor, which is used to detect air gestures above the phone as well as the user's presence.
Faster refresh-rate displays are quickly becoming the new trend in smartphone design, with Razer, Asus, OnePlus, and a few other Chinese brands getting in on the action.
We loved the 90Hz displays on the OnePlus 7 Pro and 7T , where the higher refresh rate and FPS made scrolling, animations, and navigation feel buttery smooth. Well, not so much, as Google's 90Hz display doesn't run at 90Hz all the time. Like many new features on the Pixel 4, the 90Hz display sounds good on paper, but in reality, it comes with myriad gotchas. Not running in 90Hz all the time is justifiable in some cases. If you're running a full-screen video at 24fps, 30fps, or 60fps, a 90Hz refresh rate won't do anything other than burn battery.
Some games are not compatible with 90Hz, so limiting the display there is appropriate, too. WhatsApp was blacklisted by Google "due to poor performance under 90hz" according to an Android commit.
Google Maps and Waze, Google's two mapping apps, don't really have an explanation attached as to why they are limited to 60fps on the Pixel 4. We can only assume it's because Waze and Maps are already battery-heavy apps, and Google is worried about the Pixel 4's battery life. The second big refresh rate issue is that the 90Hz mode is tied to the phone's Google PR responded to this discovery, saying the behavior was "preserving battery when higher refresh rates are not critical. In here, you'll find an option to "Force 90Hz refresh rate" all the time, which then makes the Pixel 4 work like every other 90Hz phone.
With this developer checkbox on, the Pixel 4 matches the buttery smooth performance we've seen from other 90Hz phones: the animations, scrolling, and transitions are all faster and smoother feeling. With this checkbox off, eh, it's a crap shoot. The Pixel 4's brightness and ambient light requirements for the 90Hz mode are very high, and this seems to require bright overhead light. Just keeping the display on and wandering around my house in the daytime is enough to have it ping-pong between 60 and 90Hz.
The very brightly lit bathroom with the overhead lights? That's good enough for 90Hz. The moderately lit bedroom with the lamp in the corner and light coming through the window? That's going to drop to 60Hz. Even just something like my head casting a shadow over the light sensor from an overhead light is enough to have it drop to 60Hz. You know how auto brightness is totally crazy and unreliable? Now imagine that technology being used to control the refresh rate of your device. It is just all over the place based on the tiniest light fluctuations.
It really is detrimental to the experience. It's great that you can turn all these half-measures off, but the overwhelming message from Google is that its 90Hz phone doesn't have a big enough battery to support 90Hz mode all the time. The display on the Pixel 4 XL looks great in indoor lighting, but it's not very bright, and you might have issues in sunlight.
Shifting up design
There's actually a hidden high-brightness mode that was recently discovered by XDA. The display has a sunlight mode, but Google chose not to expose it to users. I would guess this is because it would use a ton of the device's limited battery. This year the Pixel 4 supports "Ambient EQ," a display white balance adjustment that changes based on the surrounding light. It's basically the Google version of Apple's True Tone. Ambient EQ previously appeared on the Google Home Hub , which came with a special hardware color sensor and aggressive automatic brightness and white balance controls.
I was a big fan of the Home Hub implementation, which was so aggressive that it allowed the display to blend into the environment, completely removing the glaring, blasting light that normally comes out of a display panel. The Pixel 4 doesn't have the special color sensor and only lightly tweaks the display based on the surrounding light.
It's subtle enough that it doesn't make a huge difference, and I could take it or leave it. I'm still very interested in seeing what a Home Hub-style implementation would look like on a smartphone, though. We value our editorial independence and follow editorial guidelines. Although we provide information on the products offered by a wide range of issuers, we don't cover every available product or service.
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Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra vs Google Pixel 4 XL - PhoneArena
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Pixels per inch PPI. Rear camera megapixels. Rear camera aperture size.
Google Pixel 4 review: Shooting for the stars
Front camera megapixels. Front camera aperture size. Physical Dimensions. Network category speed. Power, storage and battery. Device features. Headphone jack. Fingerprint sensor. Water resistance rating. Alex Kidman twitter facebook. Where to buy. What's in this guide? Choice of three colours Face unlock Still no microSD expansion. Read more about the Google Pixel 4's design.
Read more about the Google Pixel 4's camera.