The Pixel 2 XL was released on October 19th of 2017. It is now several months later and I’ve been using my Pixel 2 XL as my primary for almost the entire time. When it came out, Google took a TON of flak for it. Mostly because of issues with the display. Despite those issues, this phone is an awesome phone and I have loved it! Although it didn’t win, it came close to being my favorite device of 2017!
Typically, I start out with the things that I love about the device and then I tell you the things I didn’t like so much. I’m mixing it up a bit this time I didn’t really have many complaints about the phone, but there were two big issues that a lot of people complained about. I want to get the issues out-of-the-way.
The first and biggest issue on the Pixel 2 XL was with the screen and the display. It comes with a 6-inch P-OLED display, a resolution of 1440×2880, and an 18:9 aspect ratio. There were a lot of reports of various issues with the display. Everything from burn-in, to faded colors, and a lack of responsiveness around the edges. I haven’t had any of those issues and think many of them were overblown. I even had some weird issues with my own Pixel 2 XL I was forced to return my original Pixel 2 XL because Google couldn’t figure out the first issue. My replacement device had a different issue but it was corrected with a software update.
The second issue was with the speakers. The Pixel 2 XL features dual front-facing speakers. But they have different volume levels. It isn’t a huge difference but if you listen carefully, you can hear that the speaker top of the screen is quieter than the bottom one. Google claims this was by design but a lot of people haven’t been happy about it.
Now when I said those were “issues”. They are definitely things that people have complained about and they aren’t exactly ideal. Aside from the two issues I had with the display, if other people hadn’t mentioned them first, I doubt I would have even noticed them!
So the Pixel 2 XL is a lot more than just the issues. It is a solid phone with amazing performance and was a close runner-up for my favorite device of 2017. There are many great things to love about it.
The first thing I love about it is the camera. Cameras on mobile devices keep getting better and better, but this one knocks every other camera I’ve used out of the water! The pictures are amazingly sharp and crystal clear. The original Pixel had a great camera but it had issues with a weird halo effect when you took pictures in bright light. This one has none of that and handles low-light and every other light situation extremely well!
Some people may consider the second thing to be part of the first and normally I would as well. But the video camera on this phone is so good that it deserves its very own spot on the list. It can record in 4K at 30 frames per second, and in 1080p at 120 frames per second. On top of that, it uses optical stabilization, electronic stabilization, and some fancy AI work. All of these work together to give you the most stable video you’ve ever seen. I can hold the phone in my hand while recording video and it will look like it was filmed on a tripod!
My last reason would have to be the overall experience on the phone. The Pixel 2 XL comes with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 MSM8998 processor and 4GB of RAM. Combining these with stock Android makes everything insanely smooth. There are no jitters and no stalling when you are using your Pixel 2 XL. There are other devices that have come out since the 2 XL that have 6GB and even 8GB of RAM. The 2 XL does such a good job with 4GB, that in most cases it outperforms those other devices.
There are a lot of other things to love about the Pixel 2 XL. It comes with an IP67 dust and water resistance rating, the squeeze to activate Google Assistant function, a super-fast fingerprint scanner, it can be used on pretty much any carrier, it has a mostly aluminum body, a 3,520mAh battery that is capable of keeping your device alive for more than a day, and then if your battery runs low you can charge it super quickly with Google’s Rapid Charge. And there’s so much more this phone can do!
But the question remains. Do I recommend that you get the Pixel 2 XL? Yes. It is a great device and it is a device that will make you very happy. At around $800, it is a bit on the pricier side. If you value a device with a really, really good camera and like to stay on the cutting edge of Android, this would be the perfect device for you. You can order your Pixel 2 XL here: https://amzn.to/2GncQT8.
If you would like to check out our video review, hit the play button down below.
Roy likes to dabble in all things Android and contributes everywhere he can. He owns the site rwilco12.com and its accompanying forum, he develops his own apps and ROM’s, is a Moderator and Recognized Developer on XDA-Developers.com and is the VP of Public Relations for AndroidFileHost.com.