Google Pixel 2 XL – Review
The Google Pixel 2’s big brother, the XL, is a brilliant step up from Google’s previous attempts at smartphone manufacturing. This phone is very well put together, brilliantly designed aesthetically and functionally and has excellent photo taking capabilities. The real competitor to the Pixel 2 XL is actually the Pixel 2, but it does trump it overall.
The Pixel 2 XL carries over a similar design from the Pixel 2, with it being mostly put together with a two tone pairing of glass and aluminium and comes with IP67 rated waterproofing. The aluminium on the back has seen improved grip added, which gives a more secure feeling if using the device case-less. The front of the phone is stunning, with Gorilla Glass 5 ensuring again more security, and comes with 3D curve on the edges to add to the brilliant look and design. The bezels have also lost territory, putting it on par with other flagship devices this year.
The display on the Pixel 2 XL is also fantastic, giving a QHD+ 2,880 x 1,440 resolution with an 18:9 display, improving the contrast, colour accuracy and deeper blacks compared to the previous gen XL. Unfortunately if the device is slightly tilted, there is an instant loss of brightness and colour, something that didn’t actually happen on the original XL. The 6-inch screen on the Pixel 2 XL resolution differs reasonably from the 5-inch screen of the 5-inch, for viewing purposes the XL is the device to choose by a long shot.
Camera quality is this smartphones top trump, it even outshines some close competitor even though it doesn’t conform to the dual-lens craze of 2017-18. The single lens is 12.2MP set at an f/1.8 aperture, an improvement on last year’s XL, with the front camera not changing from the 8MP camera with a f/2.4. With a widened aperture the pictures turn out even better than last year, even though there appears to have been no major change. Faster focus and portrait both working wonders in ensuring the best photos are taken. Google have also introduced its own version of Live Photo with Motion, that records a second of footage surrounding each photo.
Another feature in the camera capabilities of this phone is portrait mode, which snaps a regular image and a rich version with bokeh, and you can easily spot the differences. The bokeh filter will pronounce an area of the photo and blur other areas, sometimes it is a little hit and miss but overall does exceptionally well. Until 2021 comes around, you will also get unlimited cloud storage for full resolution photos and videos, after which we can expect Google to use as a selling point for future models.
Battery wise you’ll comfortably get a full days use out of the Pixel 2 XL, even though it only houses a 3,520aMh battery noticeably smaller than the 5,000aMh one ZenFone 3 Zoom sports. It’s possible to get the phone to last around a day and a half with less use, very impressive. The XL also comes with wireless charging capabilities, considering Google’s very close relationship with Qualcomm, this was expected.
This is an extremely well rounded smartphone if you’re looking for a plus-sized model, even with it not holding the top specs or thinnest awards, it certainly performs and looks very well. It is a very good option indeed.
Google Pixel 2 XL Tech Specs
Android 8.0.0 Oreo
QHD+ (2880 x 1440) pOLED at 538ppi
12.2 MP rear camera
8 MP front camera
Qualcomm Snapdragon 835
2.35Ghz + 1.9Ghz, 64 Bit Octa-Core
Memory and storage
Storage 64GB (expandable)
Dimensions and weight
Height 7.9 mm
Length 157.9 mm
Width 76.7 mm