The things you need to know before buying a Pixel 4 XL

I’m a google guy. I’ve owned everything from the Nexus One all the way through the Pixel 3, and now, the Pixel 4. I’m the type to buy first and review later so wading through all the previews and sneak peaks before the phone came out wasn’t appealing. I knew I’d be getting it regardless. Having owned and used the phone for a little time now, here are few things I wished I knew BEFORE getting the Pixel 4.

The battery is kind of lame. Although Google added a larger battery vs the Pixel 3, the Pixel 4 simply cannot run all day with even moderate use. While this isn’t a deal break for most users, as they’re rarely too far away from a charger for the whole day, it will mean bringing some sort of external power source if you’re out for the day or expecting heavy use. Hopefully future updates will optimize the software a bit to help alleviate some battery drain.

Like it or not, Google Assistant is here to stay. Live captioning muted video, some of the best speech to text recognition in the game, and accurate responses are making the dream of a Star Trek style computer closer to a reality. Using Duplex to reserve a table or screen your calls feels foreign at first, but becomes second nature once you actually get the hang of using it. 

All these cool options via the Assistant come with a cost, your privacy. In order for all these handy automations to work properly google needs nearly unlimited access to your phone data and activity. Web & App Activity tracking must be enabled for the Assistant to function, and it’s more than likely that will track even the most mundane of activities. 

Finally, the wide angle and more specifically the lack of one. The Pixel 3 wide angle selfie lens was one of the killer features of the Pixel 3. I understand wanting to ditch the notch but the ability to take better, more inclusive selfies was great for candid moments with friends or family. 

Despite some lingering privacy concerns, needing to charge my phone at least once a day and missing a wide angle selfie camera I’m thrilled with my latest Google slab, its more evolution than revolution but sometimes that’s okay.