Tech Junkie Review: Google Pixel 3 on Verizon Wireless

I love technology but the truth is, phones are starting to bore me.  It’s not that there are no good phones out there, it’s just that they all seem the same these days.  It takes a lot to get my attention.  The Google Pixel 3 has my attention.  I took it for a test on Verizon Wireless.

Hardware

The Pixel 3 is exactly what you expect it to be when it comes to hardware.  The screen is bright, colors pop and it looks awesome.  The Pixel 3 feels solid.  I love the back.  It has kind of a frosted glass feel to it.  The color choices are cool too.  The model I tested was "Not Pink".  This is a pale pink color with a fluorescent orange power button.  You wouldn't think it works but it totally works!  It also comes in white and black (also with power button colors designed to pop.)  Kudos to Google for finding a design that looks great but also stands out in the crowd of iPhones.

Inside the Pixel 3 has the Snapdragon 845 processor, a powerhouse that keeps the Pixel 3 rocking.  It's the same processor you'll find in most other top-of-the-line Android phones.  The camera on the back is a 12 Megapixel shooter, there are 2 cameras on the front.  One is a standard 8 Megapixel camera while the other is a wide angle camera.  This is a nice touch that makes getting that group selfie with the family a little easier.  Google also says there is a special chip in the Pixel 3 that handles image processing.  More on that below.

Google is also now supporting wireless charging!  This is a huge addition for me and one of my complaints about previous Pixel phones.  There's also a finger print sensor on the back that works as you would expect.  NFC support for wireless payments is built-in.  Basically, all of the bells and whistles you would expect in a top of the line smartphone.

Software magic

The Pixel 3 runs Android Pie, the newest version of Google's operating system.  On top of that, there is some software magic that makes the Pixel shine.  A few examples include the ability to screen calls.  When someone rings your phone you can select "screen call" and an automated voice will instruct the caller to explain why they are calling.  Then, as the caller starts talking, text of what they're saying appears on the screen right in front of your eyes!  It's super cool.  You can chose to ask more questions, answer the call or hang the call up.  It's an awesome feature and a great way to screen those telemarketers, calls you can't answer at the moment or that call from your co-worker that you're trying to avoid.

The camera features are also pretty awesome.  Specifically the ability to take a low light situation that typically produces a dark, grainy photo and shoot a picture that actually looks good!  I'll let me demo selfies in a dark corner of the Fox31 studio speak for themselves.

 

Speed

I tested the Pixel 3 on Verizon's network in Denver and not only did the Snapdragon processor keep the phone itself running fast but network speeds were pretty solid.  I got 15-20 Mbps download speeds on LTE inside of our building  near downtown Denver.  Not amazing but your results will vary based on location, building conditions, etc.

Conclusion

The Google Pixel 3 is among the best of the best smartphones as we begin 2019.  If you're willing to spend $800+ on a smartphone your options should be iPhone, Samsung Galaxy S9 or the Pixel 3.  The Pixel 3 shines in it's simplicity, unique features you won't find on any other phone and the amazing pictures Nightsight can take in dark situations.

The Google Pixel 3 could easily be my next phone and gets a 5 out of 5 geek rating from me!  If you're in the market for a new Android phone, I suggest you check the Pixel 3 out.

The Google Pixel 3 is available right now for $800.  The larger Pixel 3 XL is starts at $900.  You buy the phone directly from Google, the model we tested was from Verizon Wireless.

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