Google Pixel Pill Evaluation: Android Drugs Are Again

Google Pixel Pill


  • Rapid processor

  • Integrated speaker dock sounds stunning

  • Just right entrance video digital camera

Don’t like

  • Worth ramps up for instances and extra attic

  • Negative keyboard or stylus case choices

The arena of Android capsules has been a weirdly up-and-down experience for the endmost decade or so. I bear in mind Google’s implausible modest 7-inch Nexus capsule again in 2012. And Google’s significantly much less a hit Chromebook-meets-Android Pixel Slate, a form of touchscreen laptop computer/capsule hybrid. That was once Google’s earlier capsule {hardware} access.


Attend to this: Pixel Pill: Google Made a Just right House Android Pill

The Pixel Pill is a go back to Android capsules for Google. However its festival by no means strayed. Samsung’s ongoing capsule collection, as an example, and Amazon’s Hearth capsules (which will sideload the Google Play games bundle and are very reasonably priced). Google’s untouched Pixel Pill is expectantly a go back to finest Android capsule tool and contours, too: The $499 Pixel Pill appears like a in reality excellent iPad spare for Google ecosystem society. Google additionally took a special approach by way of making it a dockable house hub, one thing Apple will have to thieve in the future for its iPad lineup.

pixel tablet propped up in front of some books

The Google Pixel Pill props up simply on a shelf, because of its dock. It’s a part of what makes it really feel like a singular choice in comparison to others.

Scott Stein/CNET

There are simplest two gripes I’ve: this Pixel Pill, date fast-performing and in reality well constructed, doesn’t have a Google keyboard case at initiation, nor any stylus choice. That is extra of a sharable capsule for the house and relatives than a get-work-done capsule, even supposing you must completely convey your personal equipment and assemble it what you need.

At $499 (£599, AU$899), this Pixel isn’t the cheap capsule and if you wish to upload extra attic past the bottom fashion’s 128GB, the 256GB model is $100 extra. Upload some other $80 for Google’s Pixel Pill protecting case. It’s a dearer package deal than Apple’s entry-level iPad. However for those who’re on the lookout for a extra top rate Android capsule for households than Amazon’s Hearth choices or Samsung’s Tab A-series, this seems like the most productive wager.

Learn extra: Highest Android Drugs of 2023

The google pixel tablet, mounted in its charging and speaker dock.

The capsule snaps into its rate dock, which doubles as a speaker. 

Scott Stein/CNET

Design: Blank and comfortable

Google’s Pixel Pill has an iPad-like really feel, with a just about 11-inch show and a clean aluminum case. At a little bit over a pound, it’s comfy plenty to store however leans towards the heavier facet with its case on. 

The disguise solution — 2,560×1,600 pixels — offers you a crispy image, and dazzling, too. The facet audio system are excellent plenty on their very own however now not as stunning as what the speaker dock supplies (as it’s possible you’ll be expecting).

There’s negative headphone jack, so that you’ll want USB-C headphones or an adapter, or proceed Bluetooth. There’s a fast-acting fingerprint sensor within the energy button that unlocks the Pixel Pill as speedy as a Pixel telephone. Total, it’s what I’d need from a capsule, and it seems in reality excellent when docked. The entire design finally ends up feeling like a bigger Google Nest Hub, or a canny image body.

Google’s pricey case (there also are less expensive third-party choices) is good-looking stunning, too, with a comfortable end and protecting edges, and a steel, ringlike kickstand that adjusts to any perspective and nonetheless docks within the speaker hub. It’s now not a keyboard case, however you must upload your personal Bluetooth keyboard for table typing.


The speaker dock is good-looking little, and may also be packed for exit.

Scott Stein/CNET

The dock is stunning

Google features a dock the Pixel Pill magnetically attaches to that fees and acts as a rise in order that the capsule could be a house image body, or canny house interface, or a hooked up speaker/show with YouTube advantages or no matter else it’s possible you’ll want. The speaker-equipped dock has a material masking just like Google’s alternative house merchandise and is little plenty to bind simply for exit. Its audio system tone boomy for taking part in track indoors, too.

Snapping the capsule off and on the dock is moderately simple, even supposing occasionally it’s a modest dried to find the magnetic pins, and pulling the capsule off the dock can occasionally lead to pulling the light-weight dock with it. The dock rate plug and cable also are proprietary, now not USB-C. The Pixel Pill does have a USB-C port for charging, however you’ll want that individual dock cable to plug it into your house, and the cable range isn’t precisely lengthy.

The Pixel Pill helps casting audio from some other instrument to the capsule when it’s hooked up, however the speaker dock received’t office when the Pill isn’t fixed on it and has negative Bluetooth. That’s a little bit of a bummer if any individual desires to usefulness the speaker date any individual else makes use of the capsule.


Fracture-screen multitasking is solely high-quality in this capsule, and a host of apps already backup it.

Scott Stein/CNET

Efficiency and tool: Fast and progressed, most commonly

The Google Tensor G2 chip, indistinguishable to what’s on the latest Pixel telephones, is zippy within the capsule and usually runs smartly. There have been a couple of moments the place apps perceived to glitch a little bit in split-screen multitasking, however that may be because of this being a prerelease instrument working early tool.

Google’s renewed consideration to pill tool displays, with multitasking that appears like Apple’s iPadOS; apps will also be simply dragged up from an app taskbar into some other window, and two apps directly will also be adjusted to suit on a couple of preset-size settings. Google’s additionally added a collection of widgets that assistance customise knowledge, which I occasionally discovered helpful and at alternative instances concept weren’t versatile plenty. 

Movies from some other app, like YouTube, can pop up and hover in a little window over those break up home windows, too. It feels stunning to office in those methods, even supposing now not all apps office for the Pixel Pill but. Google concerned about optimizing a host of pervasive apps and likewise its personal core apps first, however expectantly extra will come. There also are some Google Play games apps that don’t run in any respect but at the Pixel Pill, together with Geekbench, which we usefulness for trying out capsules for efficiency comparisons.

The Tensor G2 pulls off some methods Google has on its Pixel telephones, too, particularly Enchanment Eraser within the Pictures app, which eliminates society or items from photographs. Dictation additionally works in reality smartly: I may see myself voice-typing a batch with the Pixel Pill, despite the fact that I nonetheless leave out a devoted keyboard case (trace, trace). Google’s on-screen keyboard is ok, however I didn’t fall in love with it. I additionally discovered that a couple of multifinger swipe gestures were given a modest bizarre from time to time in apps like Google Earth. Some two-finger swipes and pinches, as an example, weren’t all the time identified, however perhaps a week tool replace can deal with that.

Great digital camera

The front-facing 8-megapixel digital camera seemed excellent for selfies and video chat, and seemed sharper than my standard laptop-video-chat expectancies. Google positioned its digital camera at the lengthy edge the place it will have to be, just like Apple’s most up-to-date Tenth-gen iPad. It manner this capsule will also be impaired simply for video chat when docked. However, a subject-tracking, autoframing attribute didn’t appear to office on my evaluation unit, and video property seemed higher for the pace with Google Meet than in Zoom.


James Martin/CNET

Google makes residue accounts good-looking simple

One alternative benefit of Google capsules over iPads is account-swapping. Similar to a Chromebook, you’ll be able to upload residue accounts and turn over to others simply plenty right here, even getting into a visitor method or a child method. This underlines the family-sharing idea that’s at this capsule’s core, and I adore it. I may simply see the Pixel Pill being a aimless grab-a-tablet choice in a lounge the place any individual may simply select it up as wanted and take a look at a couple of issues, oversee a video or play games a competition.

I leave out Google’s office center of attention at the Slate, although

I leave out one of the concepts Google was once going for on its earlier Slate capsule, which was once extra of a Chromebook with Android advantages. The Pixel Slate made a keyboard and trackpad one among its bulky incorporated options. This life, the Android-focused Pixel Pill has long gone the alternative means, towards a sharable, video-and-game-playing, app-browsing capsule, however with none stunning concepts for easy methods to upload a keyboard or get admission to to ChromeOS-type options in a untouched, useful means. Someone who desires a Chromebook will nonetheless wish to get a Chromebook — or a laptop computer. You might want to upload a keyboard right here, or a stylus, however your mileage received’t be any other than on some other Android capsule. Plus, with alternative choices from Samsung, OnePlus and Amazon, keyboard equipment are already there — and even incorporated.


There’s a USB-C port at the Pixel Pill, despite the fact that the dock fees with its personal proprietary plug and pin connector.

James Martin/CNET

Sure, it can be a house hub, too

I didn’t take a look at the canny house options of this capsule, however you’ll be able to secured Google House units and services and products identical to you’d do on a Nest Hub. That’s the Pixel Pill’s largest luck as a tool, and the place Google pivoted this life with its design. Resonance reaction by way of its microphones was once speedy, and I used to be in a position to play games track, ask questions, play games audiobooks and initiation YouTube movies briefly with resonance instructions. As soon as my youngsters discovered this factor may play games movies, they amassed round it like a little TV. It can be a stunning kitchen choice, particularly because the capsule hovers when within the dock (keeping off touch with counter surfaces). The dock perspective received’t regulate past its somewhat increased perspective, however I discovered it simple plenty to look at when on a desk or counter.

A stunning get started for Google’s go back to capsules

Don’t restrain, Google: Store development off the Pixel Pill, upload a keyboard case, and perhaps decrease the fee a little bit — with a case and the 256GB attic choice, which prices an residue $100, you’re all at once pushing against $700. However that is the Google capsule you’re more than likely on the lookout for, in spite of the fee. The one query is whether or not Google commits to its tool and function over life. Google has a tendency to all at once alternate center of attention on product strains, particularly its capsules. However the Pixel Pill is a stunning addition to its instrument lineup and a really perfect nonphone choice. Store it round, please.

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