If you are anything like me, you were pretty excited last October when Google announced the release of their Pixel and Pixel XL phones. It’s not as if I don’t love my iPhone 6 because I really do. It’s just that I often find myself feeding into the hype around new electronics, particularly Smart Phones. For me, my phone has become synonymous with my camera, one without the other seems so foreign to me. That’s why I paid particular attention to the specifications and capabilities of the Pixel’s camera. With a 12.3 MP rear camera and an f/2.0 lens, the Pixel is a force to be reckoned with. Add in the IR laser-assisted autofocus and the 1,55 μm Pixel size and you begin to see why this phone would get the attention of anyone who frequently finds the need to capture beautiful sunsets, their children at play or their dog skipping aimlessly along the beach. The fact that Google offers HDR+ along with unlimited cloud storage is just icing on the cake. No offense to Apple but can I mention that this phone actually has a headphone jack and a 10.2″ display with 2560×1800 pixel resolution. You can really hit the ground running with this phone with 8 or 16 GB of RAM and 32 or 128GB of storage. The Pixel truly is a phone for the ages!

Since its initial rollout in October 2016, the Pixel phone has encountered its share of relatively minor issues—excessive flare in pictures with the rear camera, along with some connectivity issues and minor issues with its battery. To its credit, Google has addressed the issues and the Pixel is a better phone today than it was after its initial release. If you are concerned about size and weight, rest assured that the Pixel is encased in an aluminum chassis with a glass panel on the camera housing providing an imprint fingerprint sensor. For those techies out there, the Pixel uses the Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 system-on-a-chip.

Pixels are offered in two models, the standard model and the Pixel XL, each with a different screen and battery size. The standard Pixel has a 5-inch display while the Pixel XL has a 5.5-inch display. When it comes to battery size, the standard has a 1080p AMOLED with a 2770 mAh battery while the Pixel XL has a 1440p AMOLED with a 3450 mAh battery. As you might guess, this makes the Pixel XL slightly larger (154.7mm height, 75.7mm width, 8.5mm depth) than the standard Pixel (143.8mm height, 69.5mm width, 8.5mm depth). Concerned about the weight of the device in your purse or back pocket? You will find only a marginal difference between the two devices with the standard Pixel weighing 143 grams and the Pixel XL coming in only slightly heavier at a mere 168 grams. When it comes to CPU, you’ll find that both devices run on the Android 7.1 “Nougat” operating system and use a Quad-core (2×2.15 GHz & 2×1.6 GHz) Kryo 64-bit ARMv8-A cores with 4 GB LPDDR4 RAM. As mentioned, the Pixel has a 2,770 mAh battery while the Pixel XL offers a 3,450 mAh. For someone like me who frequently finds herself out of memory during those long phone calls with Mom, the extra battery is well worth it!

Finally, let’s talk about the camera. After all, this is what really caught my eye and made me consider the Pixel. This phone offers a Sony Exmor IMX378 for its rear camera and a Sony Exmor IMX 179 for its front. The resolution of both is amazing (1.55 µm pixel size for the rear camera and 1.4 µm pixel size for the front camera) and the HD 720p video with up to 30 FPS compares nicely with its Apple iPhone equivalent.

You won’t have to look far for a bounty of reviews on this product from varied and qualified sources. Praise has been given to the sleek design and long battery life, though there has been some criticism of the Pixel not being waterproof and slightly pricey. However, the Google Assistant has been praised along with the quality of the camera. So do your research and get out to your nearest electronics store and hold one in your hand.