The Google Pixel Pill is a superbly serviceable slab with one standout function that turns it right into a communal hub gadget. There’s lots to love right here, however odd pricing and a few unusual choices cease it from being actually nice.
- Sharp display
- Dock is a useful charging accent and a singular function
- Way more reasonably priced within the US
- Pixel UI works nicely on a pill
- Boring design
- The speaker dock doesn’t sound nice
- Display screen solely 60Hz
- Value is way too excessive within the UK
- Soesn’t have all of the Nest Hub software program options
Docking station includedWi-fi charging succesful speaker standed comes within the field
Google Tensor chipsetPowered by the identical Tensor G2 chip because the Pixel 7 Professional
Sharp showExcessive-resolution 10.9-inch LCD display, 60Hz
Google has aimed to do one thing worthwhile with its first Pixel Pill by combining an ordinary Android slate with a dock that turns it into a sensible residence hub when not in use.
Making an attempt to create of level of differentiation for a pill has typically been tough, with many manufacturers focussing both on low cost, content-consumption units or pricier laptop computer replacements.
The Google Pixel Pill as an alternative is positioned as a form of communal household gadget that, when not getting used, sits on an included charging stand and morphs into one thing not dissimilar to the Nest Hub Max.
It’s a sensible selection, particularly with Google’s Assistant taking centre stage, but there are nonetheless quite a lot of the age-old Android pill points right here, to not point out the excessive UK worth and the cheaper, arguably better-specced rivals just like the OnePlus Pad.
Design and Display screen
- Easy, clear design
- Comfortable plastic again
- One display dimension possibility
After quite a few pretty boring designs, Google actually upped its sport with the final two generations of Pixel telephones. I’m not saying the Pixel 6 or Pixel 7 had been the top of telephone design, but the tasteful multi-tone color selections and crowd pleasing digicam visor definitely helped them stand out.
It’s slightly stunning then that the Pixel Pill appears to fully shun any of those advances, going again to a much more fundamental general look that’s principally underwhelming. There are two colors (some areas have three) both with a white or black entrance. Each colors have a tender, nearly eggshell-like end on the again.
There’s a USB-C port for charging on the vertical aspect, a fingerprint-enabled energy button, quantity rocker and a few plastic toes that assist the pill from scraping surfaces when positioned on its charging stand. A small cutout for the one rear digicam and a set of charging pins are the one issues to adorn the again.
It’s a extremely easy design and it appears to be like completely satisfactory. The soft-feeling rounded again and sides make it good to carry and at 493g (barely lower than the OnePlus Pad, barely greater than the iPad 10) it’s mild and comfy.
The display is extra of the identical. It’s good – however nothing you gained’t discover elsewhere at this worth vary.
The spotlight of the ten.95-inch panel is the sharp 2560 x 1600 decision, which renders photographs, movies and textual content very crisply. It’s an honest LCD with good color copy, nevertheless it’s definitely missing in a number of the extra high-end areas. The locked 60Hz refresh charge, for example, provides it a juddery look when swiping that isn’t there on the 144Hz OnePlus Pad.
I additionally struggled with the show’s brightness. It’s wonderful when used inside, however on events I took it outdoors the overly reflective display made it just about inconceivable to make use of. Even when sat beside a window, the display was typically arduous to see.
- Included with the Pixel Pill
- Okay sound, however not that spectacular
- Turns the pill into the speaker dock and residential hub
It’s a daring transfer together with a charging speaker dock with each single model of the Pixel Pill, however in actuality, it’s the one addition that helps Google’s pill gives one thing not discovered by the likes of Samsung, OnePlus and Apple.
The stand is a sturdy, fabric-covered block with a magnetic prime that the pill attaches satisfyingly to. As soon as hooked up, the pill begins charging and any audio performed is routed by means of the built-in audio system, reasonably than these on the pill itself.
As soon as it’s all arrange, the pill additionally goes into what Google calls Hub Mode every time it’s docked. It is a slimmed-down model of the UI discovered on the Nest Hub and Hub Max, supplying you with fast entry to some good residence controls, the Google Assistant and numerous screensavers.
As an illustration, it may well scroll by means of your Google Pictures library – turning the entire thing right into a always updating digital picture body. It could actually additionally present the climate, chosen artworks, photographs others have shot on Pixel or only a huge clock. If you happen to’ve ever used, and even seen, one of many Nest Hub units it will all be very acquainted.
As somebody who makes use of a Nest Hub Max and Nest Hub every day, the UI right here isn’t fairly as feature-rich. The House integrations aren’t as simple and also you’re typically pushed out into the principle Android interface. There are lacking options too, just like the useful manner the Nest Hub Max can recognise completely different customers by their faces.
Forged music over to the gadget and you’ll get some good customized interfaces: in Spotify for instance, album paintings is enlarged and the UI is less complicated and simpler to navigate with out choosing the pill up.
This could be an excellent good residence speaker nonetheless the audio high quality is way from the perfect round. Once I first began enjoying songs within the Trusted Evaluations workplace, a number of folks thought the connection hadn’t been correctly established and the audio was nonetheless coming from the pill itself – it wasn’t.
There’s an actual lack of bass right here, with notably instrument-heavy songs struggling. The beginning of Brianstorm by Arctic Monkeys sounded muddy, closely distorted and in no way pleasing. It does a greater job with lighter pop – Dua Lipa’s Dance The Night time had extra element and the vocals had been crisp and clear. I’d put the sound high quality on par with a less expensive Echo gadget and beneath the Nest Audio.
For fundamental audio wants, like streaming radio, podcasts, audiobooks and listening to Assistant replies the speaker is greater than satisfactory and has much more element in voices than audio from the pill itself.
Efficiency and Software program
- Tensor G2 chip is succesful however doesn’t standout anymore
- 8GB reminiscence and both 128GB or 256GB storage
- 5 years of Pixel safety updates
Like all of Google’s present crop of units, the Pixel Pill is powered by the Tensor G2 chipset. You’ll discover this chipset in all the pieces from the finances Pixel 7a to the close to $2000/£2000 Pixel Fold. There’s additionally 8GB RAM and both 128GB or 256GB of storage. As normal with Pixel merchandise, there’s no expandable storage.
Whereas I is likely to be slightly upset in my foldable telephone having older internals, in a pill designed primarily for residence use the Tensor G2 is greater than succesful. In our artificial benchmarks, the Pixel Pill performs on par with the OnePlus Pad in most exams, nonetheless the Dimensity 9000-powered slate has slightly extra multi-core grunt. Nonetheless, there’s sufficient energy right here for on a regular basis duties. You may see a number of benchmark scores beneath.
Just like the OnePlus Pad, I discovered most video games – together with Stardew Valley and Name of Responsibility Cell – performed nicely, with the pill retaining fully cool all through. There wasn’t even any warmth coming from the divide after a tricky 30-minute benchmark. Pair up a Bluetooth controller and widescreen makes this an awesome selection for sport streaming.
There are two audio system on every brief finish of the Pixel Pill and so they sound good if slightly quiet. There’s an honest stereo really feel if you’re watching motion pictures and the 16:10 side ratio makes for an immersive content-watching expertise. Different specs embrace Bluetooth 5.2 and Wi-Fi 6.
There’s a lot much less a digicam focus right here than on Pixel telephones, with a median 8MP fixed-focus sensor on each the front and back. The entrance digicam is nice for video calls, whereas the rear one is detailed sufficient for scanning paperwork. I discovered it barely odd that Google bothered to incorporate digicam options like Night time Sight and High Shot right here, as there’s probably not any motive to make use of this pill as an precise digicam.
Android tablets have, up to now, all the time been criticised for his or her software program – notably the shortage of true pill variations of in style telephone apps. The iPad has lengthy dominated this house and I can’t actually see Android catching up anytime quickly.
There are many tablet-optimised apps right here, although. Loads of Google’s personal apps have bespoke variations for the bigger show, like Google Information and Chrome, whereas third-party providers like Disney Plus and Netflix really feel at residence on the larger show. It’s extra the highly effective apps the iPad has you gained’t discover right here, issues like expanded variations of Lightroom, Photoshop and Procreate. There’s the great LumaFusion video modifying app, which could be very welcome.
Google’s interpretation of the Pixel Launcher, constructed upon Android 13, is good and one of many extra fluid Android pill UIs I’ve used. There’s a useful dock that seems if you swipe up from the underside of the display, supplying you with fast entry to incessantly used apps. You may then maintain down an app icon and drag it into the principle show for fast multitasking. You may have two apps open side-by-side, with a floating video window as a 3rd.
There’s much more Google may have achieved with the software program, however I get the impressions it most popular to maintain issues easy and concentrate on the customers it thinks would purchase this pill. As an illustration, there’s no desktop-like UI akin to Dex on Samsung tablets and Stage Supervisor on iPadOS, however then this isn’t a pill for productiveness and it’s not making an attempt to ape a laptop computer, The entire lack of keyboard instances and pen equipment make this level abundantly clear.
When it comes to software program updates, Google has mentioned the Pixel Pill will probably be supported with 5 years of safety updates.
- No USB-C cable or plug included
- Expenses through the included speaker dock
There is no such thing as a customary charger included with the Pixel Pill and except you present your personal USB-C cable and plug the one technique to juice it up is with the speaker dock.
That is an attention-grabbing transfer, and contemplating the value it might have been good to get at the very least get a USB-C to USB-C cable within the field. That being mentioned, all through my week with the Pixel Pill I haven’t used cabled charging (except for for some exams) as every time I’m achieved utilizing it I simply connect it again on the dock and it costs again up.
The pill gained’t be offered with out the dock, however Google has mentioned further docks will probably be obtainable – so one could possibly be positioned within the lounge, and one other within the bed room.
Battery life itself has been about what I might count on from an 11-inch pill – meaning it’ll final a number of days of multi-hour use earlier than needing a cost and it’ll solely lose a little bit of energy every day if it’s left untouched in a bag.
An hour of Netflix streaming took 14% off the battery, which is greater than I might count on, however I did discover myself upping the brightness greater than normal to have the ability to comfortably watch. half-hour of sunshine gaming took off 7%, extra on par with the hassle from OnePlus.
Charging through the 15W dock may be gradual – a number of hours are required for a full cost – however then it’s extra of a spot the pill will sit for prolonged intervals and simply cost. Google has additionally added an choice to restrict charging, so having it plugged in on a regular basis shouldn’t hurt the battery over an prolonged interval.
Cabled stays the quickest technique to cost, however for those who’re acquainted with Google’s telephones then you definitely’ll know quick charging isn’t one in every of its specialities. As no charger was included, I used one designed for the Pixel telephones and it took 160 minutes for a full cost. A 30 minute cost solely took the battery up by 22%, which is gradual.
As a comparability, the OnePlus Pad can get to 55% in the identical period of time and a full cost takes simply over an hour.
Do you have to purchase it?
You’re after a communal pill for residence use:
Connect the Pixel Pill to the included dock and it turns right into a digital picture body, a sensible residence hub and a speaker. The help for a number of customers additionally makes this an awesome household pill to depart docked within the lounge. The iPad seems like a way more singular gadget.
You need a laptop computer substitute:
In contrast to some tablets from Apple, Samsung and even OnePlus, this isn’t actually a productiveness pill. Google isn’t promoting a keyboard case or a stylus and it’s much more of media pill.
The Pixel Pill is a stable if barely underwhelming Google slate. The ‘hub’ performance and included charging dock assist it stand out from the group and supply a singular motive for its existence, however past that, it doesn’t do a lot to propel Android tablets ahead in any significant manner.
It’s an excellent content-consumption gadget with a pointy show and good software program. It pairs nicely with Google’s different merchandise, just like the Pixel Buds, and is visually interesting in a fundamental form of manner.
But, the competitors is hard. If it’s simply media watching you’re after, one thing just like the £249.99/$279.99 Amazon Fireplace Max 11 gives good specs and is way cheaper. Samsung’s Tab S8 collection is pricier however has the instruments to supply extra productiveness abilities and the OnePlus Pad shouldn’t be solely cheaper however helps numerous equipment and has a a lot nicer 144Hz show.
The odd US-to-UK worth differentiation additionally makes it arduous to advocate this over an iPad for those who’re within the UK. Within the US, the Pixel Pill’s $499 worth places it up towards the iPad 10, nonetheless within the UK it’s £100 pricier than the identical gadget. With that £100 leftover, you would simply decide up a speaker that sounds higher than the charging dock.
As we’ve seen with the Pixel telephones up to now, enhancements come thick and quick as soon as Google will get going and I have already got hope a Pixel Pill 2 would repair lots of the points I’ve right here – hopefully, it arrives quickly.
How we check
In contrast to different websites, we totally check each product we evaluate. We use industry-standard exams to be able to examine options correctly. We’ll all the time inform you what we discover. We by no means, ever settle for cash to evaluate a product. Inform us what you assume – Ship your emails to the Editor.
Used as a major gadget for every week
Reviewed alongside official speaker stand
Benchmarked with industry-standard instruments
Sure, presently there isn’t a manner to purchase the pill with out the dock. Nevertheless you should purchase additional docks.
Google states there’s help for 5 years of safety updates.
Trusted Evaluations check information
Geekbench 6 single core
Geekbench 6 multi core
1 hour video playback (Netflix, HDR)
30 minute gaming (mild)
Time from 0-100% cost
30-min recharge (included charger)
15-min recharge (included charger)
3D Mark – Wild Life
GFXBench – Aztec Ruins
GFXBench – Automotive Chase
Google Pixel Pill
Display screen Dimension
First Reviewed Date
Google Pixel Pill
258 x 8.1 x 169 MM
2560 x 1600
Hazel, Pocelain, Rose
An abbreviation for milliampere-hour and a technique to specific the capability of batteries, particularly smaller ones in telephones. Generally the upper the mAh, the longer the battery will final however this isn’t all the time the case.
The kind of show often used on cheaper and mid-range units. Lacks the punch on an OLED panel.