With the Google Pixel 8 series only a few weeks away from being officially unveiled, we’re finally getting closer to seeing Google’s newest flagship smartphones hit stores everywhere. As with every annual Pixel release, there’s a promise of better performance, better hardware, and an overall improvement to the general user experience.
With that being said though, the Pixel 8 will no doubt be compared to its predecessor, the Pixel 7. While it is generally a good Android handset, it’s not a perfect device, and this past year alone we’ve seen a number of complaints from Pixel 7 users about certain issues that were present on their device. Needless to say, Google has its work cut out for it – what improvements do we want to see on the Pixel 8? Let’s take a look.
Perhaps right off the bat, one thing that we’d like to see the Pixel 8 address is the somewhat concerning battery performance that’s been plaguing a number of Pixel 7 units. Of course it’s not universal, as there are users out there who have been content with their Pixel 7’s battery – but it’s undeniable that the experience hasn’t been ideal for everyone.
…there are users out there who have been content with their Pixel 7’s battery – but it’s undeniable that the experience hasn’t been ideal for everyone.
A lot of users are pointing fingers towards the Pixel’s Tensor G2 chipset, which itself is based on a Samsung Exynos processor. Given the tendency of Exynos processors to deliver subpar battery endurance, we’re hoping that the Pixel 8’s Tensor G3 chipset will be designed to address this concern. Of course, software plays a big part of this – which is why the good feedback surrounding the Android 14 Beta looks very promising.
We suppose you could say that thermal management and battery performance go hand in hand – as with the issues surrounding the Pixel 7’s battery drain, overheating has likewise been an issue for the device, which many are also attributing to the Tensor G2 sensor as well as problematic updates to Android 13. While the Pixel 7 does feature a heatsink for thermals, it doesn’t seem enough to dissipate the high temperatures that occasionally plague the phone.
While Google has addressed the issue with a software update, it hasn’t seemed to completely eradicate the Pixel 7’s tendency to heat up with even basic tasks, such as data and camera usage. It then rests upon the Pixel 8 to address this issue, and as with the battery drain, we’re hoping that the Tensor G3 and Android 14 will be enough to give users a cooler user experience.
It’s no secret that users have also had issues with the Pixel 7’s build quality – there have been several reports of the rear camera glass cover cracking on its own, leading to multiple user complaints – the issue has also been spotted on the Pixel 7a, albeit not at the same frequency as seen on the 7.
Additionally, there have also been issues regarding the volume rocker on the Pixel 7 and 7 Pro, with some users complaining that their volume buttons have completely fallen off from their devices. While the Pixel 7 is more affordable compared to competing Android flagships, this doesn’t excuse the lapse in durability and quality control that we’ve seen – hopefully, the Pixel 8 is manufactured with a better focus on QC overall.
The last item on this list isn’t necessarily a defect or performance issue – while Pixel phones have always stood out from the competition thanks to their amazing computational photography, that isn’t necessarily the case anymore. A lot of smartphone manufacturers have begun stepping up their camera game both by way of computational photography and AI features, and the Pixel can’t keep resting on its laurels.
There’s talk of Google using artificial intelligence to add more camera features on the Pixel 8. Given the company’s push to integrate more AI-powered functionality in Android, we wouldn’t be surprised if this were the case, and can mean a great leap forward for Pixel photography.
Additionally, there’s still room for improvement in the way of video quality – right now, the iPhone still outperforms the Pixel when it comes to shooting footage. That’s not to say that Pixel video quality is terrible, but it would be great to see Google enhance video performance on its phones.
With that being said, we have no doubt that Google will have some new tricks up its sleeve once the Pixel 8 rolls out. After all, the rumored specs all point to some much-needed improvements, but until we have the device on-hand it’s hard to tell for now. Nevertheless, Google seems confident so far in its upcoming smartphone, and it should be a very interesting experience – we just hope it’s worth the wait.
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