Google has announced Pixel feature drops, which will bring more significant feature updates in addition to the bug fixes and security patches sent to the phones regularly. The first Pixel drop is coming this month and will include more photo controls, automatic call screening, improved video calls on Duo, among other useful features.
While most of these feature updates are directed towards improving things on the recently released Pixel 4, the older Pixel 3, 3a and 2 also get a few updates.
Following the update, users will be able to blur a photo background after it has been clicked to give it a similar appearance as seen in the portrait mode. This portrait blur feature will work for photos that were taken years ago too.
The first Pixel drop will also bring the ability to Google Assistant to screen unknown callers and robocalls before even the phone rings and restrict them. If it’s not a robocall, the phone will ring a few moments later with some information about the caller. This call screen update available on Pixel 4 doesn’t require WiFi or cellular data to work.
The company is also releasing an update to Google Duo for Pixel 4, which brings auto-framing that helps centre the face during video calls via the wide-angle lens. The camera can detect new faces as well and will readjust the frame accordingly. Besides, Pixel 4 will also predict the next sound during spotty connections to keep the audio flowing.
On Pixel 2, 3 and 4, Google Duo video call now also get portrait filter, which will help users blur the background and focus on the face.
Google also says that the update will make Google Maps on Pixel 4 faster and more accurate and will provide better location quality with improved on-device computing. A new Google Assistant, which the company says is faster and more helpful, will also be available to Pixel 4 users in the UK, Canada, Ireland, Singapore and Australia.
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More features for Pixel 2, 3 and 3a
In addition to the aforementioned features, the Pixel drop is also bringing the following features to Pixel 2, 3 and 3a.
- The Recorder app will now be available to the Pixel devices mentioned above.
- Pixel 3 and 3a also get Live Captions for videos
- Focus mode update for digital wellbeing.
- Flip to silence the phone — a part of digital wellbeing — will now be available on Pixel and 2XL.
All the Pixel devices are also going to get an improved memory management system in the feature drop, which will bring enhancements that proactively compress cached applications that will help in multitasking apps.
“Pixel phones have always received monthly updates to improve performance and make your device safe. Now, feature drops will bring more helpful and fun features to users on a regular basis to continue to make your Pixel better than ever,” Google announced.