Why it’s best to swap your outdated iPhone for a Pixel 2

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The Pixel 2 is a rising temptation from many present iPhone customers.


Josh Miller/CNET

Sometimes, you simply want a pal to persuade you that you simply’re proper. Over the previous weeks, I’ve had a couple of mates who’re “lifelong” iPhone customers message me and ask about switching away from Apple.

They wish to break their biannual iPhone improve cycle and eschew the brand new iPhone X for the Google Pixel 2. One of my mates wrote me this:

“I am actually over Apple iPhones. I am sort of into the Pixel 2, however that is solely on Verizon, proper? I do not like their limitless plans. I just like the iPhone X, however don’t desire it.”

After receiving a handful of comparable messages, I made a decision to take this Pixel pining critically and share my experiences with each phones. This comparability is much less about proving which telephone is “higher,” and extra about why the Pixel 2 is a stable improve for somebody who’s at all times owned an iPhone.


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So less expensive

Let’s begin with value. A brand new 64GB Pixel 2 is $350, £370 or AU$500 cheaper than a 64GB iPhone X. The chart under compares the costs for the Pixel 2 and that iPhone X. The Pixel 2’s value is precisely the identical as what a base level-iPhone used to value till the iPhone eight.

Pixel 2 and that iPhone X costs

Pixel 2 64GB Pixel 2 128GB iPhone X 64GB iPhone X 256GB
US value $649 $749 $999 $1,149
UK value £629 £729 £999 £1,149
Australia value AU$1,079 AU$1,229 AU$1,579 AU$1,829

I ought to acknowledge that Google makes a bigger model of its telephone with the identical processor and digital camera referred to as the Pixel 2 XL. A 64GB model of the XL prices $849, £799 or AU$1,399. At launch the Pixel 2 XL suffered some screen issues which the Pixel 2 didn’t.

Apple additionally makes the iPhone 8 which has the identical processor and wide-angle digital camera because the iPhone X. A 64GB iPhone eight prices $699, £699, AU$1,079 which is extra in-line with the price of a Pixel 2.

But my iPhone mates weren’t within the Pixel 2 XL or the iPhone eight. For them, it is both the iPhone X or the Pixel 2.

Carrier assist

There appears to be slightly confusion over which US networks assist the Pixel 2. You should buy and finance an unlocked Pixel 2 from Google and apply it to AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint, Verizon and Google Project Fi. Some third-party retailers like Best Buy promote and finance unlocked Pixel 2 telephones, too. And there’s at all times Verizon which sells the handset to make use of solely on Verizon.

The iPhone X could be purchased and financed from Apple, third-party retailers and all main carriers.

Notch vs. brow

Both telephones are almost equivalent in dimension. The iPhone X is a hair slimmer and smaller however has a much bigger show — 5.eight inches in comparison with the Pixel 2’s 5 inches. The iPhone X is heftier, weighing 31 grams, 1.09 ounces greater than the Pixel 2.

The design of the Pixel 2 is in keeping with the best way telephones have appeared for the previous three to 5 years. On the entrance, there is a pronounced brow, chin and bezels. The corners are rounded and there is a rear fingerprint sensor. Despite this dated components, the telephone’s match and end make it look modern — particularly the small glass panel on the again that homes the digital camera.

I additionally love the plastic-clad aluminum texture of the Pixel 2’s decrease again. It’s reassuring and cozy to carry. I deliver this up as a result of I’ve an unstated anxiousness holding the iPhone X. I am so afraid of dropping it. In a CNET drop check, the iPhone X’s glass back cracked on the first drop. But once I maintain the Pixel 2, I do not really feel that very same unease.

The iPhone X is principally all glass with a stainless-steel band that basically ties the telephone collectively. It seems to be like a prop from a futuristic sci-fi film or a bit of jewellery. The display, apart from “the notch,” covers the entrance and is framed by the tiniest of bezels. The solely buttons on the telephone are alongside the sides.

In lieu of a house button, Apple added on-screen actions. During my first few days with the telephone, I discovered these new gestures irritating, however now they’re like second nature. Apple changed the fingerprint sensor (beforehand constructed into the house button) with FaceID. The telephone unlocks as quickly as you take a look at the display. It works like a attraction for me, however in the event you suppose you will miss unlocking your telephone with a fingerprint, the Pixel 2 is a greater match.

Speakers on each telephones are respectable and louder than the unique Pixel and the iPhone 7 and seven Plus. But neither telephone provides the big rich sound of, say, the Razer Phone.

Fast charging vs. headphones

The Pixel 2 comes with a quick charger that may add 7 hours of battery life after 15 minutes of charging. The iPhone X helps quick charging, however does not include the cable or wall charger you will have to make it work. You have to purchase a USB-C to Lighting cable ($25, £25, AU$35) and a 29-watt charger ($49, £49, AU$69).

The iPhone X is able to wi-fi charging with a conductive charging mat (additionally not included). The Pixel 2 does not assist this, however with that 15-minute top-off talked about above, I do not suppose you will miss it.

Below is what comes within the field for an iPhone X and Pixel 2:

What’s within the field

iPhone X Pixel 2
Wall charger 5W USB 18W USB-C
Charging cable Lighting to USB USB-C to USB-C
Headphones Yes, with lighting connector None
Headphone Jack Adapter Lighting to three.5mm USB-C to three.5mm
Extras None Quick change adapter

Neither telephone has a headphone jack, however each include an adapter so you’ll be able to nonetheless plug in your wired headphones. The iPhone X additionally comes bundled with lightning-connected earbuds whereas the Pixel 2 does not include any. If you do not have an outdated pair you should use, you will have to spend extra money.

Apple additionally sells wi-fi earbuds referred to as AirPods ($159, £159, AU$229), whereas Google provides its personal wi-fi headphones referred to as Google Buds ($159, £159, AU$249).

So what is the takeaway right here? Whatever telephone you go along with, you will have to embrace dongle life. But…

Android Oreo is sweet

The greatest change you should take into account will not be the bodily telephones themselves, however how you are going to change operating systems — specifically to Android. For seasoned iPhone homeowners, older variations of Android had a fame of being chaotic and fewer safe. Early Android, relying on the telephone, may very well be a dumpster fireplace stuffed with bugs, belated updates and bloatware apps from carriers and producers.

iphone-x-gestures

iOS 11 on the iPhone X has some new gestures in lieu of a house button.


CNET

But that has modified with Android Oreo. It runs simply as effectively on the Pixel 2 as iOS 11 does on the iPhone X.

You may also miss Apple-centric options akin to iMessage and FaceTime — particularly in case you have family and friends who use them closely.

But apart from forsaking the blue bubbles, Android Oreo and iOS 11 are effectively matched in each means with regards to options, safety and ease of use.

Since Google makes each the and software program, like Apple, the corporate is sweet about sending common updates to Android.

iPhone X has Apple Pay and Siri, whereas the Pixel 2 has Android Pay and Google Assistant, the latter of which may run on an iPhone, too. If you are an Apple Music subscriber the service is available on Android.

If you will have a variety of apps or video games you purchased on iOS, you will have to repurchase them on Android. This is not as huge a deal because it was a couple of years in the past since most apps are “free” with in-app purchases.

Switching from one to the opposite will inevitably imply a small studying curve. But Android Oreo will doubtless shock most iOS customers with its stability and have set. 

For extra about switching from iOS to Android, take a look at our how-to article with tips and tricks.

Google lately introduced the first developer version of Android P, its subsequent main replace. Apple will doubtless launch its first developer model of the subsequent iOS on the Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) this June. 

The finest cameras

The Pixel 2 has a single rear digital camera in comparison with the dual-rear cameras on the iPhone X. Both telephones are able to capturing improbable photographs and movies. Yet, to my eye, the Pixel 2 takes better photos than the iPhone X.

I choose how Pixel 2 photos have extra element and sharpness because of the way it processes photos with AI. That doesn’t suggest the iPhone X is a slouch. It’s higher at zoomed photographs as a result of its second digital camera has a telephoto lens and permits for 2X optical zoom. Zooming on the Pixel 2 is not at all times fairly, however it’s better than other digital zooms.

Both telephones have Portrait Mode, which provides photos a synthetic shallow depth of discipline mimicking photographs taken with a DSLR digital camera and a quick lens.

The iPhone X creates this impact higher. Portraits have a gradual transition between the topic and the background which seems to be extra like a DSLR portrait. Apple additionally enables you to adjust lighting effects after the fact to make a portrait picture actually pop.

The Pixel 2 separates the background and foreground with a laser-like precision. This can generally look a bit synthetic or Photoshop-ish. But there’s something dramatic in regards to the outcomes, too.

Also, the iPhone X takes amazing Portrait Mode photos of fish.

The front-facing digital camera on every telephone additionally has Portrait Mode, too. Here, the Pixel 2 bests what the iPhone X can produce in each means. Pixel 2 selfie portraits are simply pretty much as good as what its rear digital camera can produce. iPhone X selfie portraits sadly do not at all times nail the “background blur” impact.

As for video, the iPhone X is the king, and provides higher picture high quality and extra capturing choices. On the opposite hand, the Pixel 2’s video stabilization is the best around.

Longer battery vs. sooner processor

The iPhone X’s A11 chip blows away the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor within the Pixel 2. In precise use although, it is laborious to inform the distinction. Neither telephone feels slower than the opposite.

Pixel 2 and that iPhone X pace exams

iPhone X Pixel 2
GeekBench four single-core four,232 1,917
Geekbench four multi-core 10,329 6,396
3DMark Ice Storm Unlimited 63,446 39,267

In our looped video battery exams, the Pixel 2 lasted 13 hours and 28 in comparison with the iPhone X lasting solely 11 hours and 45 minutes. That’s not an enormous distinction. In actual life, I by no means had hassle with both telephone getting by means of a full day of use with out charging.

The extras

The Pixel 2 comes with a connector to switch media and recordsdata out of your outdated iPhone to your new Google telephone. Also in the event you run out of area on your photographs and movies, know that you simply get limitless Google cloud storage along with your buy of the Pixel 2.

apple-ios-11

iOS 11’s animojis create a “cartoon” face that may mimic your facial gestures whereas recording your voice.


Sarah Tew/CNET

The telephone will also be used with a DayDream View headset ($149, £99, AU$149). The headset is roofed in fabric and has a tiny Black Mirror-style distant. You can entry VR content material from YouTube, Netflix, the New York Times (my favourite) and extra. Though it is enjoyable to make use of, I ended up utilizing the DayDream View as a lot as my sluggish cooker — quite a bit for the primary few weeks, however hardly in any respect ever since.

Lastly, the Pixel 2 helps ARCore apps and options Google Lens software program that may overlay details about the world round you utilizing the digital camera and Photos app.

The iPhone helps iOS AR apps and has FaceID, which permits for animoji messages. Other than that although, it is fairly scant on integrating with AR and VR platforms.

AppleCare for the iPhone X prices $200 and gives protection for two years from date of buy from any sort of harm. Google’s “Preferred Care” prices $129, however lacks the comfort an precise Apple Store gives. While there is not a Google Store with a Google Genius Bar for quick restore turnarounds, there’s a round the clock stay buyer assist system in place, which Pixel customers can entry in Settings.

Other telephones exist, however…

iPhone eight

Even although my mates are torn between a Pixel 2 and an iPhone X, it is value acknowledging that an iPhone 8 and Pixel 2 are a greater match-up with reference to cost and design. The iPhone eight has a elegant tackle the identical reiterative design utilized by the iPhone 7, 6S and 6.

The insides of the iPhone eight are just about equivalent to these of the iPhone X. In our battery exams, the iPhone 8 lasted an hour longer than the iPhone X when taking part in a looped-video at half brightness. Both telephones have the identical wide-angle digital camera, however the iPhone X additionally has a second rear digital camera and FaceID.

Pixel 2 XL

The Pixel 2 XL has a bigger display at 6 inches in comparison with the Pixel 2’s 5-inch show. The bezels on the two XL are notably thinner, giving it a extra trendy appear and feel than its little brother the Pixel 2. On the within, all the pieces is similar the besides the battery. The 2 XL has a three,520-mAh battery whereas the Pixel 2 has a smaller 2,700-mAh one.

Galaxy S9

It’s additionally value mentioning that Samsung latest telephones, the Galaxy S9 and S9 Plus, at the moment are out. Both telephones have a variable-aperture camera promising sharper pictures with on a regular basis use. But the Pixel 2 nonetheless shot higher photographs in preliminary exams. CNET has extensive coverage of the new phones, however none of my iPhone-owning mates who wished a Pixel 2 have been excited about it.

The Pixel 2 and its inventory model of Android have a easy and clear mojo that appeals to an iPhone consumer greater than Samsung’s “add all the pieces” strategy. 

6 months away

Keep in thoughts we’re on the midway level between Apple and Google’s final telephone launches and their subsequent ones. Apple sometimes releases a brand new iPhone in September whereas Google has launched each of generations of the Pixel in October. But 6 months generally is a lengthy wait to improve your telephone. Ultimately this comes right down to you.

Best Android telephone for iPhone lovers

The Pixel 2 is probably the most iPhone-like telephone I’ve seen on Android. It’s a stable alternative for somebody used to residing the Apple life. Upgrading to the Pixel 2 signifies that you will get monetary savings, get one of the best telephone digital camera for photographs and have a tool that does not wanted to be coddled. Plus, Android Oreo packs a degree of match and end that will absolutely shock probably the most religious iOS consumer.

Once you determine to modify, all you should do which coloration Pixel 2 you need.

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