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The biggest announcements from Google's Pixel event

Steve Hogarty
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After some hefty leaks last week, Google has just officially unveiled a new collection of devices with Google Assistant — the tech giant's artificial intelligence engine — at their core.

Pixel

Chief among Google's announcements was the reveal of its new phone, called Pixel. The iPhone rivalling handset is available in two sizes, Pixel and Pixel XL, with the former sporting a 5-inch 1080p screen and the larger version sporting a 5.5" Quad HD screen. Both models have otherwise identical specifications. The phone is powered by the Snapdragon 821 processor and runs on the latest Nougat release of Android.

The rear-camera has a 12.3MP resolution and a f/2.0 aperture, with HDR+ functionality, image stabilisation and the promise of the fastest shutter speeds of any phone on the market. All Pixel owners will also receive infinite online storage space for photos and videos. A quick charging feature can provide up to seven hours battery life from a 15 minute charge.

Google are fairly straightforwardly claiming the Pixel to be the best phone on the market, taking swipes at Apple's lack of a headphone jack and even spoofing their colour schemes by naming their three colour variants Quite Black, Really Blue and Very Silver.

Pixel will be £599 (32GB) and £699 (128GB) and Pixel XL at £719 (32 GB) and £819 (128GB). Available for pre-order from today and on sale and in store on 20 October.

Google Home

Google's second big hardware announcement of the evening is also powered by Google Assistant. A smart home device first shown at Google's I/O conference earlier this year, Google Home is a speaker that lives in your house and barks responses to voice commands and carries out everyday tasks. Much like the Amazon Echo, it can play music, answer questions, warm your home, give directions, curate shopping lists and control smart home fixtures in the house.

When integrated with Chromecast, Google's smart TV dongle, you can control your television through Google Home, asking it to play shows from Netflix or YouTube.

There's no news of a UK launch date yet, but it launches in the US for $129 on 4 November. That's notably cheaper than the Amazon Echo.

Chromecast Ultra

A small disc-shaped bit of gadgetry that you plug into the back of your telly, Google Chromecast got its own incremental upgrade today. The new version supports 4K video, HDR and Dolby Vision.

It will be available to purchase in the UK "soon", says Google, at the slightly increased price of £69.

Craig David

And then Craig David made an appearance to sing that song that he does. Truly a memorable evening for all.

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