It was a big day for Google. We just saw the launch of two new Pixel phones, two new Google Home devices and a new Pixelbook. As exciting as these new products are, you can’t have a show without also having accessories and Google definitely delivered.
First up we have a new Daydream View VR headset. Google lists over eight compatible phones, including the the Galaxy S8/S8+ and all Pixel phones, and will throw in $40 worth of VR games as an incentive to buy. They have an updated design and improved lenses with a wider field of view, and come in three colors – “Charcoal”, “Fog” and “Coral”.
The new headsets retail for $99, which is $20 more than last year, and preorders start today with an October 19th launch.
Google Clips was a surprise announcement that adds another “lens” to your smartphone, able to transfer recorded content over Wi-Fi. It can also stream video to your phone in real time. It’s a small, simple device with just a lens and shutter button on the front. It houses some AI tech that looks for familiar faces and interesting things to shoot, always watching and always ready. It’s basically an autonomous recording device that can inconspicuously capture “moments” when you’re away. Kids and pets seem to be its number one target.
The camera is two inches square and only comes in one color, white and teal. It has a 130 degree field of view and can record seven second, 15 fps bursts of images. For security, everything happens in the camera and not via Google cloud, including facial recognition and storage (16GB). It retails for $249 and there currently isn’t a release date.
Pixel Buds are clearly targeting Apple’s AirPods. The new earbuds have an integrated lanyard to prevent accidental loss, but are completely wireless. They can be controlled with taps and swipes on the right earbud. You can tap to pause and play music, swipe forward and back to adjust the volume and a long-press will activate Google Assistant. It’s a Google Home in your ear.
The coolest feature that was shown off at the event was the Pixel Buds’ ability to translate languages in real time. For example, a Spanish speaking user can have a natural conversation with an English speaking user as the Pixel Buds translate for them almost instantly. It was an incredible demonstration and the earbuds can translate between 40 languages.
The battery averages 5 hours of use and the included case can charge them four times. They join the new Bose QC35 II headphones for being compatible with Google Assistant. The new wireless earbuds will go on sale in November for $159.