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Pixel 2 XL vs. Pixel XL: A huge step forward

by Brandon Russell | October 4, 2017October 4, 2017 1:30 pm PDT

A lot can change in a year. When viewed from the back, you might be tempted to think the Pixel 2 XL looks similar to last year’s Pixel XL, but flip them around, and that’s where you’ll noticed the biggest change.

The Pixel 2 XL’s display is not only edge-to-edge, but the device features front-facing stereo speakers, something not often seen in high-end flagships. The design reminds me in a lot of ways of the Nexus 6P, a device that’s still held in high regard.

There’s also a high level of polish to the Pixel 2 XL that was missing from the Pixel XL. The rear glass panel is now smaller, while the curves and shape of the Pixel 2 XL simply looks better and more ergonomic. And even though the Pixel 2 XL’s display is larger, the device remains a comfortable size.

Other big changes include the Pixel 2 XL’s active frame, revamped launcher, improved camera, and more powerful specs. Twelve months between releases doesn’t typically warrant an upgrade, but there’s just so much to like about the Pixel 2 XL.

The one big thing last year’s Pixel XL holds over the Pixel 2 XL, however, is a headphone jack. Whether you believe wireless headphones are the future or not, companies are clearly following Apple’s lead. Seeing Google get cozy with the trend is a big deal.

You can see how these devices compare on paper in the table down below.

Google - Pixel 2 XL Google - Pixel XL
Display Size 6-inch, 1440 x 2880 pixel display (537 ppi) 5.5-inch, 1440 x 2560 pixel display (534 ppi)
Resolution X 1440 1440
Resolution Y 2880 2560
Display Type QHD+ pOLED AMOLED QHD
Operating System Android 8.0 (at launch) Android 7.1 (at launch)
Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 Qualcomm Snapdragon 821
RAM 4GB 4GB
Storage
  • 64GB
  • 128GB
  • 32GB
  • 128GB
External Storage No No
Main Camera (Back) 12.2MP 12.3MP
Secondary Camera (Front) 8MP 8MP
Bluetooth Bluetooth 5.0 LE Bluetooth 4.2
Battery 3520mAh 3450mAh
NFC Yes Yes
Connectivity
  • USB-C
  • 3.5mm Headphone jack
  • USB Type C
Sensors
  • Accelerometer
  • Ambient light
  • Barometer
  • Hall
  • Magnetometer
  • Proximity
  • Accelerometer / Gyrometer
  • Barometer
  • Fingerprint
  • Hall
  • Magnetometer
  • Proximity/ALS
GPS
  • GLONASS
  • GPS
  • Digital compass
  • GLONASS
  • GPS
Height 6.2 inches (15.75 cm) 154.72 mm (6.09 inches)
Width 3 inches (76.2 mm) 75.74 mm (2.98 inches)
Depth 0.3 inches (7.6 mm) 8.58 mm (0.34 inches)
Weight 6.2 oz (176 g) 168 g (5.93 oz)
Colors Black, Blue, White Black, Blue, Silver
Supported Audio Formats N/A N/A
Supported Video Formats N/A N/A

Brandon Russell

Brandon Russell enjoys writing about technology and entertainment. When he's not watching Back to the Future, you can find him on a hike or watching...

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