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Pixel 4 XL second opinion review: The Android phone I can't stop using

Google Pixel 4 XL
(Image: © Joe Maring / Android Central)

Our Verdict

Bottom line: It's expensive and the battery doesn't last as long as I'd like, but that hasn't stopped me from thoroughly enjoying my time with the Pixel 4 XL. This is a phone where the overall experience is greater than the sum of its parts, and at the end of the day, it's the Android handset I most eagerly reach for. For anyone that values excellent cameras, reliable performance, and fantastic software, it's one of the best gadgets you can buy this year.

For

  • Clean, simple design
  • Truly incredible cameras
  • Vibrant 90Hz display
  • Now Playing, Active Edge, and other Google add-ons
  • Live Caption is astonishingly good

Against

  • Battery life is mediocre at best
  • Not having an ultra-wide camera is lame
  • Few apps work with face unlock

When reviews for the Pixel 4 and 4 XL went live back in October, Google's latest flagships were met with an overwhelming sense of disappointment. Sure, they did a lot of things right, but the poor battery life and weak value proposition left them in a dark cloud.

Those reviews made me anxious about my decision to order the Pixel 4 XL, and when it was finally delivered a few days later, I wasn't entirely sure what to expect. A few weeks later, however, this is quickly becoming a device I thoroughly enjoy using.

The Pixel 4 XL is expensive, and compared to some of its competitors, it doesn't seem like a very good deal. There may be smarter ways to spend your money on a new Android handset, but out of all the ones I've used this year, the Pixel 4 XL has stood out as the one I'm most eager to come back to time and time again. It's certainly not perfect for everyone, but for what I value most in a phone, it comes darn close.

Design and display

Pixel 4 XL in hand

Source: Joe Maring / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Joe Maring / Android Central)

Ever since the first Pixel was released in 2016, Google's smartphones have had an iconic look to them. Even when the Pixel 3 moved away from the metal and glass combo to an all-glass back, it kept the two-tone design language to create for a familiar-looking package.

The Pixel 4 represents the biggest design shift we've seen for the Pixel series, and while it may not be the most visually-stunning, it has a sense of utilitarianism to it that I absolutely love.

While the Pixel 4's backside is made out of glass, the matte finish on the Clearly White and Oh So Orange models doesn't feel like it at all. Instead, touching it reminds me more of a premium polycarbonate. The same goes for the aluminum frame, which features a matte black paint job. The end result of these decisions is a phone that feels great to hold and always looks like it was just taken out of its box for the first time.

At least on the Clearly White model of the Pixel 4 XL I have, it barely picks up fingerprints at all. You may notice the occasional smudge here and there when holding it under the light just so, but compared to other glass-clad phones, it's a dream come true. The soft-touch frame and rounded edges also make this a very comfortable phone to hold, and thanks to the flat display, you never have to worry about your palm accidentally touching things you didn't intend to (I'm looking at you, OnePlus 7 Pro 😑).

The Pixel 4 XL's matte glass and frame feel outstanding.

Lastly, while the Pixel 4 XL doesn't have any color-shifting glass or pop-up selfie camera, I actually like how it looks. The panda/stormtrooper aesthetic of the Clearly White Pixel 4 XL is as clean as they come, and the orange power button offers a nice accent color to tie the whole package together. It's nothing too over-the-top, but it's also more eye-catching than a boring slab of a single color.

Moving on to the Pixel 4 XL's display, it's truly excellent.

The AMOLED panel kicks out vibrant colors with deep blacks, and with a Quad HD resolution, everything looks as crisp as can be. The display also gets really dim, which allows for comfortable use at night and early in the morning.

Above all of that, though, my favorite thing about the Pixel 4 XL's screen is the 90Hz refresh rate. This is a feature I've become increasingly obsessed with on smartphones, as it makes everything you do feel faster and more responsive. Google's implementation for this on the Pixel 4 series has been a bit funky, but things have improved since launch.

Google Pixel 4 XL propped up against a tree

Source: Joe Maring / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Joe Maring / Android Central)

When the Pixel 4 and 4 XL first launched, it was quickly discovered that the 90Hz functionality was disabled once the screen brightness went below 75%. At that point, it would revert back to 60Hz. With the November 2019 security patch, however, Google's changed things so that it works as follows:

  • On the Pixel 4, the 90Hz feature turns off when the brightness goes below 42%.
  • On the Pixel 4 XL, the 90Hz feature stays on regardless of how bright or dim the screen is

As someone that wants to see the 90Hz goodness whenever possible, I'm really glad Google made the changes that it did. The 90Hz implementation on the Pixel 4 XL is fantastic, and not being blocked from using it just because I enjoy a dimmer brightness level is a welcomed update.

Cameras — oh the cameras

Pixel 4 XL cameras

Source: Joe Maring / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Joe Maring / Android Central)

If there's one thing that makes the Google's Pixel phones iconic, it's their cameras. Google's computational magic for image processing has allowed the Pixels to stand out as some of the best phones for photography, and the Pixel 4 XL is no different.

I don't take a ton of pictures with my phone, but when I do, I want the end result to look as good as it possibly can. I also want to be able to rely on my phone to take a good picture no matter what setting or environment I'm in. Those are two things the Pixel 4 XL does with ease.

Specs-wise, the Pixel 4 XL is equipped with a 12MP primary camera and 16MP telephoto camera with a 2x optical zoom. I do wish that Google had also included an ultra-wide lens, but the quality of the photos I've taken so far have quickly made up for the lack of a third sensor.

When shooting in daylight or brightly-lit rooms, photos look fantastic. Colors are vibrant while staying true-to-life, the phone handles different levels of exposure with ease, and the 16MP telephoto camera can capture a remarkable level of detail.

Being able to rely on the Pixel 4 XL to take great-looking photos whenever I whip it out of my pocket is great, but if there's one aspect of the camera package that I've enjoyed the most, it's the astrophotography mode. This is an upgrade to Google's already impressive night mode, and it essentially takes an ultra-long shutter time of low-light environments to create for a final image that's often jaw-dropping.

See more

You'll need to make sure the Pixel 4 XL stays dead still while taking a photo of the stars, which means propping it up against something or using a tripod. The last picture in the gallery above was taken with the astrophotography setting, and it required a four-minute shutter time. It's a shooting mode that requires a bit of patience, but once all is said and done, the picture that's churned out proves to be well worth the wait.

Performance and software

Pixel 4 XL with display on and showing the multitasking menu

Source: Joe Maring / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Joe Maring / Android Central)

In addition to fantastic cameras, there's something else that's stuck with Google's Pixel phones — not having enough RAM. The Pixel, Pixel 2, Pixel 3, and Pixel 3a all shipped with a measly 4GB of RAM, and compared to other devices rocking anywhere from 6, 8, or 12GB, it looked pretty pathetic. With the Pixel 3, in particular, it was so bad that opening the camera would kill any song or podcast you had playing in the background.

With that in mind, I'm happy to report that performance on the Pixel 4 XL has been great. The Snapdragon 855 paired with 6GB of RAM isn't the most technically impressive combo you can find in a smartphone right now, but it's more than enough horsepower for just about any task you throw at it.

I've yet to encounter any sort of performance issues with the Pixel 4 XL.

Daily apps like Twitter, Gmail, YouTube, and Reddit all perform without a hitch, and even graphically intense games, such as Call of Duty Mobile, run incredibly well and are set to high graphic levels by default. Thanks to the 90Hz refresh rate, swiping through menus and scrolling through timelines on social media feels wickedly smooth.

Along with the high-end chipset and additional RAM, I also have to credit Google's software for how snappy the Pixel 4 XL is. Software on Google phones has shifted from "stock Android" to a "Pixel experience," but whatever you want to call it, it's one of my favorite ways to use the OS.

Google's take on Android 10 is easy-to-navigate, free of any unwanted clutter, and the software additions it does add feel genuinely helpful (more on that later).

Furthermore, along with a great software experience today, the benefit of buying a Pixel phone is that things are guaranteed to keep getting better as time goes on. The Pixel 4 XL comes with three years of guaranteed software updates and security patches, meaning the phone will stay up-to-date through at least October 2022. That's not quite on par with the level of update commitment you find with Apple's iPhones, but in the Android space, that's about as good as it gets.

Infamous battery life

Pixel 4 XL battery settings

Source: Joe Maring / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Joe Maring / Android Central)

I prefaced it quite a bit in the intro for this review, so I suppose it's time I talk about battery life. Battery life on the Pixel 4 XL is not good, but it's also not as horrible as I was anticipating.

The below screenshots represent a pretty average day for me. With fairly regular use of Twitter, Instagram, Reddit, and some time spent messing with the camera — along with an endless stream of notifications — I saw 4 hours and 18 minutes of screen-on-time. Keep in mind, that was with the ambient display enabled and forcing the 90Hz refresh rate to be on all the time.

Source: Joe Maring / Android Central

There are plenty of other phones out there with substantially better endurance (the ASUS ROG Phone 2 and OnePlus 7T come to mind as some of the latest examples), and in a lot of cases, they cost less than the Pixel 4 XL.

If you're someone that's frequently on the road or without access to a power source, the Pixel 4 XL could prove to be an annoying daily driver. Light-to-moderate usage of it will allow you to get through a full day on a single charge, but as you start playing games, streaming video, or doing turn-by-turn navigation, it won't be uncommon to seek out a charger in the early evening or late afternoon.

Seeing as how I work from home with a wireless charger next to my computer, this hasn't been too big of an issue for my personal use. I throw the Pixel 4 XL on the charger in the morning after I wake up, and while it's propped up on my Qi charging stand, I can still use it for quick spurts. Once it's at 100%, I take it off and go about my day.

Not everyone has that same convenience of always being able to top-up their phone, but if you are, I wouldn't stress out quite as much about the Pixel 4 XL's battery. It's still not great, but I've been able to work with it just fine.

All of Google's extra features

Pixel 4 XL settings

Source: Joe Maring / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Joe Maring / Android Central)

At the top of this review, I mentioned that the Pixel 4 XL is a phone that's greater than the sum of its parts. There are so many little features here and there Google sprinkles throughout the phone, and as you use each one in your daily use, they add up to create for an experience you can't get on any anything else.

One great example has to do with the Pixel 4 XL being the first phone in which Google's moved its language-processing unit to work on-device rather than needing to communicate with its servers. This results in the Google Assistant and voice dictation in Gboard being considerably faster, effectively understanding your words the second they come out of your mouth. As such, it makes both of these things more reliable and enjoyable to use.

Speaking of language processing, the Pixel 4 XL also comes with Live Caption and Google's new Recorder app.

Live Caption can be enabled at any time via the Pixel's volume menu, and when it's turned on, Live Caption transcribes any media that's playing on your phone. It works for podcasts, YouTube videos, movies, and virtually anything else with spoken language. Not only is it a game-changer for people that are deaf/hard-of-hearing, it's also a nice convenience for those times when you want to consume media on your phone without cranking up the volume.

All of Google's extra features add legitimate value to the Pixel experience.

The Recorder app is just as impressive, offering real-time transcription of any audio you record and allowing you to go back and search for specific words/phrases.

Oh, and then there's the new collection of Motion Sense gestures. These are powered by Google's Soli radar sensors, and they allow you to control certain aspects of the Pixel 4 XL by just waving your hand over the phone. Right now, that includes snoozing alarms, silencing incoming calls, and skipping through tracks in media apps like Spotify, Pandora, YouTube, etc.

I can see why some people consider Motion Sense to be nothing more than a tacked-on gimmick, but it's a feature I've been genuinely happy with. I do think there's more Google could be doing with it, but even in its early days, I've been getting more joy/usefulness out of Motion Sense than anything else.

Source: Joe Maring / Android Central

Staples from previous Pixels are here, too, and they're as awesome as ever. Active Edge, the feature that allows you to squeeze the sides of your phone to invoke Google Assistant, is present on the Pixel 4 XL and is undeniably my favorite way to get the Assistant's attention. Now Playing has also stuck around, constantly listening for songs and showing you the title and artist on your lock screen. Think of it like having Shazam always running, except it works offline and doesn't eat up your battery.

You'll also find a new UI customization suite, Google's genuinely helpful Digital Wellbeing tools, and — for the first time on a Pixel phone — you can swipe down from anywhere on the home screen to access your notifications.

All of these features make using the Pixel 4 XL that much more enjoyable, even if they aren't very exciting to talk about on their own.

The face unlock conundrum

Front-facing camera on Pixel 4 XL

Source: Joe Maring / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Joe Maring / Android Central)

With the Pixel 4 XL, Google chose to forgo a fingerprint sensor and instead use a new face unlock system as the only form of biometric authentication for the phone. After using and loving Face ID on the iPhone XS and 11 Pro, I was ecstatic for Google to offer something similar on an Android phone.

Face unlock itself works really well. Setup takes just a few seconds, and once you're done, it works shockingly fast. You press the power button, and less than a second later, face unlock scans you face, bypasses the lock screen, and gets you right to your home screen. The Soli radar system makes the whole process even faster, as it can detect when you're picking up the Pixel 4 XL and get the screen turned on and ready to scan your face before you can even press the power button.

For the apps that support the Pixel 4 XL's face unlock, the experience is just as good. After opening 1Password, there's a small prompt at the bottom of the screen to indicate that face unlock is looking for my face, and once it finds it, I'm ready to start going through my passwords just like that.

When face unlock works, it's nothing short of magic. It's just as good as Face ID on the latest iPhones, if not better, in the sense that you don't need to swipe up on the lock screen to get inside your phone after your face is confirmed. Unfortunately, at least in its current state, face unlock on the Pixel 4 XL comes with a few big drawbacks.

Face unlock on the Pixel 4 is awesome — it's just a shame such few apps actually work with it.

For starters, face unlock has room to be more secure. Face unlock will scan and register your face regardless if your eyes are open or closed, meaning someone could grab your Pixel 4 XL, hold it up to your face while you're sleeping, and get into your phone without a problem. Google has said that it'll add an option in which face unlock requires the user's eyes to be open before it works, but won't be available until an update landing "in the coming months." There's also no option for adding an alternative appearance the way you can with the iPhone's Face ID, meaning you get one scan of your face for the Pixel 4 XL to work with and that's it.

Pixel 4 XL face unlock prompt

Source: Joe Maring / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Joe Maring / Android Central)

The whole eyes closed thing is a significant security risk, but the thing about face unlock that irks me the most is its incompatibility with Android apps. At the time of publishing this review, just nine apps work with face unlock, with three others expected to work with it in the future with no set date as to when that'll happen.

There are some big names that work with face unlock, most notably 1Password, LastPass, and Venmo, but apps like American Express, Bank of America, Chase, Capital One, Discover, and just about every banking/credit card app isn't compatible. In those instances, you have to revert back to a PIN, password, or pattern to access those sensitive applications. It can make using the Pixel 4 XL feel like a phone from five years ago before biometric authentication was a mainstream feature, and it's definitely one of my biggest gripes with the entire phone.

This is something that should get better as time goes on, but right now, that future remains about as unclear as it could be.

Pixel 4 XL Worthy of the $899 price

Google Pixel 4 XL lying face-down on a tree stump

Source: Joe Maring / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Joe Maring / Android Central)

Do I wish the Pixel 4 XL's battery lasted longer? Absolutely. Do I think face unlock feels half-baked with the middling app support? Of course. Do I wish Google was offering more than 64GB of unexpandable storage for the $899 base model? You know it.

This is not a perfect phone, and you shouldn't go into buying it with that expectation. It has its fair share of problems, and they're problems that absolutely should be voiced to Google in hopes of getting them resolved with software updates or with the Pixel 5 in 2020.

4 out of 5

However, the Pixel 4 XL stands out for the fact that it still manages to offer an overwhelmingly great user experience even with those issues weighing it down. The downsides are annoying, but the things the Pixel 4 XL does right, it does so better than anyone.

I've had a blast using the Pixel 4 XL as my go-to Android phone over the last few weeks, and I can't wait for it to stick around in my pocket for the months to come.

Joe Maring was a Senior Editor for Android Central between 2017 and 2021. You can reach him on Twitter at @JoeMaring1.

82 Comments
  • I have to agree. It's almost shocking how much hate the Pixel 4 has gotten, especially since it's so much better than the 3. I'm really enjoying my Pixel 4 XL and would have no trouble recommending it to someone.
  • Why is it shocking? It's more expensive than most phones on the market, including the iPhone 11. It's bound to attract scrutiny. Anyway, it's a bit of a change from the usual blanket pixel puff pieces.
  • What's better about the Pixel 4 than the 3 ? Aside from the 90Hz refresh rate that'll empty that measly 2800mAh cell in no time?
  • Live transcription. 90Hz display. Telephoto. Astrophotography. Crash detection. Live transcription. Better GPS. Ambient EQ. 2nd gen GA. Soli. Neural Core (upgraded PVC). Face unlock. Live HDR+. Dual exposure controls. That's off the top of my head, and I'm sure there's more. Some of those will come fully to the 3, some partially, and some not at all, but there's quite a bit of difference.
  • It also has 50% more RAM and he's talking about the XL which has a bigger battery than the 3XL
  • In my experience literally everything. There's nothing not upgraded. Is it worth going from the 3 to 4? No, probably not. But it IS better in every way. Wait, I take it back. I do miss the rear fingerprint scanner.
  • Shocking? Dude wake up.
  • I've lost count, how many Pixel 4 reviews does this make from Android Central?
  • I look forward to the follow up article "Top 4 AC Pixel 4 Reviews of 2019"
  • These are boring times for smartphones that we currently live in
  • I want more articles about Disney+, PS4, and Fortnight.
  • It's insanity. They are treating it like it's the phone of the decade.
  • They keep coming until a positive one comes out. I mean how can the biggest Android fail of the year be whitewashed like it is here. Sorry Google go wreck Fitbit now. Once my OnePlus ages out I am done with Android. The family converted this year to iPhone and they are happy. Too much tech forgot the basics.
  • My Pixel 4XL exceeded my expectations of face unlock and my first experience with Android 10. I do at times find myself trying to unlock my phone with my finger.
  • The annual Android Central Pixel love in is in full force! give it up please! it's a decent handset at best with its rubbish battery and beta software. We don't need 15 articles a week on it.
  • And way overpriced for what you get. But I guess, the Pixel fan folks don't care as little as the Apple fans about the price as long as their beloved brand name is stamped o the device.
  • Android Central needs to be careful with their recommendations. They will soon lose credibility if they go around recommending phones like Pixel 4. So many deal breakers for such a hefty price needs to be condemned, not appreciated!
  • The phone is more than enough for everyone who isn't a tech enthusiast... Y'all just jumping on the hate so badly...
  • Stop, the phone is way overpriced.
  • The XL is better in just about every way than the 3XL and costs the same price. It's certainly not "way over priced" and if it is there are these things called sales.
  • If you argue against recommending a phone because it only has enough for the average user to make it fully through the day (4) or all but the top 20% of users to make it fully through the day (4 XL)... You should also argue against others that allow their phones to become obsolescent in terms of OS and security updates by or shortly after the time their warranty expires, that lag in software technology development at a time where in reality hardware has essentially plateaued and software is what is making the devices truly more functional, etc.
  • I appreciate Android Central being the only website revisiting smartphones and constantly giving us an update about them, good job on AC and keep it moving
  • The update is the phone still sucks. Whitewashing may make a few suckers fall for it though.
  • No, they clearly made it better with the last update.
  • Wait that's awesome that you can swipe down anywhere on the homescreen for the notification bar. Didn't know that.
  • Sorry if this double posts i have a junk p2xl as i was explaining... After owning a Pixel 2, which survived 2 or 3 accidental drops in Google's own case, but the last one completely destroyed the screen,not like a big crack like it no longer turned on AT ALL, making it worth less than what i owed on it, and now my second Pixel 2 XL in less than two years after the first one randomly died out of nowhere i didnt even drop that one, fortunately still within warranty, and now a second with a broken touch screen after i, uh, pressed to.o hard on the glass? I dont even know id never buy another google phone again all three became worth less while i was still paying them off. The iphones ive owned, they all actually still work the glass cracks easily they're all cracked up but at least they still work which is more than i can say for the samsung, HTC, and three google phones i owned, all worthless within 2 years. Id be more concerned with long-term reliability than anything and that can't be reviewed at launch
  • Wait a minute...you’re blaming the manufacturer for your wreck less handling of your phones? How many screens have cracked in your possession? The phone will last longer if you take better care of it. Ignoramus.
  • Love my 2XL Panda. Has been and still is a great phone. Of course it's never been dropped / abused. It's never had a glitch with software.
  • I don't think there's any questions about the performance on both. It is very good. But I really think they could been better. Why, bigger batteries would have been welcomed. The ultra wide also. Plus the prices are very high for what's offered. But the camera's are very good as expected. The soli-radar are a gimmick but will get better with time. Storage on both is pretty pitiful along with the 2800mamp battery in the base model. But I do think ram could have been higher, 8gb's would have been great, but I still don't think there will be any performance issues. If I do purchase black Friday is right around the corner. Could save up to 2or3 hundred off. The design is alittle outdated, but I like it, especially the orange corral! I'm dying to see what the actually sales are gonna be like?
  • The XL does have a bigger battery and a 50% increase in RAM is quite a lot
  • Even with its lackluster battery life, and no micro sd card slot? To be honest, I had an original pixel. It was so overrated and grotesquely overpriced, that I'd never buy another. I'm still loving my LG V30. A truly full featured device.
  • It's probably is good phone but, I would never be an early adopter if was in market for one. I would wait a month or so for a price drop which they are already starting to offer...like $200 off.
  • Vibrant 90Hz display < couldn't get it to work or see the difference in BB demo
    Now Playing, Active Edge, and other Google add-ons < that's what I call bloat, I have zero use for those
    Live Caption is astonishingly good < probably a good feature, but useless to me as well
  • That's not what bloat is.
  • That is bloat. Useless software features. Bloat is not just preinstalled apps, those can be uninstalled easy to make many phones 100% like Pixel.
  • Nope. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Software_bloat And what might be useless to you might be very useful to others. I also find Active Edge basically useless, not to mention making the phonemore complicated and pricey, but it's pretty clearly useful for many others, otherwise they would have ditched it. But I find Now Playing incredibly useful, I use it almost every day.
  • Saying bad battery is fine because you charge your phone all the time is.... Odd. Why have a mobile at all if you're going to be attached to a power source? Plus constant charging just means 2 years in that crap battery is going to be even worse. I just sold my exynos S9 for this very reason. Crap battery became unusable battery in its second year.
  • So only a few apps work with face unlock, you need to be by a charger to get it through an entire day, and it costs more than most but offers less. The mental gymnastics to justify the purchase of the phone is staggering.
  • Nail on head. We all know how great pixel cameras are. But that's it. The usual "buttery smooth" bobbins doesn't cut it anymore.
  • Why are everyone leaving the positives out and focusing on the negatives, the phone is great...
  • Lots of phones are great. And cheaper. And have better battery life
  • "The phone that grows on you." Oh, dear; high praise! 😂 Or is it just belated efforts to justify a purchase?
  • 2800mAh was a dealbreaker from the start. That's why I thought the 4 XL would get above average battery life since 3700mAh is more respectable. ...until I saw post after post about how the 4 XL is below average too. I thought stock Android was easier on the battery than the "bloated Samsung skin and bloatware" ??
  • >>...until I saw post after post about how the 4 XL is below average too.<< I've seen lots of comments about "average versus below average battery life" too. Does anyone know what "average battery life" is? Has it ever been objectively quantified?
  • On today's flagships? 8-10 hrs SOT.
  • By what measure?
  • average is 5 hours SOT. The Pixel 4XL has above average battery life. I'm average 6.5-7.5 hrs SOT. Nothing is handicapped either. I can get 8 hours if I use wifi. Have you not seen the battery test between the Pixel 4 XL and the iPhone Pro Max. The Pro Max last about 40 mins longer.
  • You’re definitely not averaging 6.5-7.5 hours SOT on the P4XL. Your post is misleading at best.
  • I needed to get a new phone, with just a year into my current phone it makes it a year early for me. So price did make a deference. If the 4XL had the wide camera and was a little cheaper I might have gotten it. Instead at $400 cheaper it was hard to pass on the OnePlus 7T. I know the 7T is missing a few things but for the price it works for me. I know the reviewer doesn't mind the price, but did he pay for it?
  • The OnePlus 7T is missing very few things, IP rating and wireless charging doesn't matter, the 7T is a great phone and you get a lot for the price, arguably the best software in Oxygen OS and amazing performance that will last longer than most Android phonesm
  • That's pure opinion. To me wireless charging and IP rating are huge and the main reasons I had to take the 7t and 7t pro off my list when looking for a new phone this fall.
  • One good thing that hopefully will come from this year's pixel phones is that with all the complaints about battery life/capacity no manufacturer will dare put a small battery in their phones next year
  • I am very happy with my Pixel 4XL. Had a Galaxy S10 previously. That was a great phone, but the flakey fingerprint reader drove me nuts. My earlier experience with an iPhone 10 spoiled me completely for Face Unlock, but iOS is just too restrictive for my taste. The Pixel 4/4XL has everything I wanted. The battery life seems fine to me, but I guess that depends on how you use your phone. Of course, this first to market version of Android 10 is not entirely bug free, and that's probably why we are still waiting for the November software update.
  • You'd change your mind if you bought a OnePlus 7T or 7 Pro as not only are OnePlus phones faster than a Plxel, they have better software too.
  • The article, sponsored by Google. LOLOLOLOL
  • I've had my 4XL since launch, and I'm an EXTREMELY heavy phone user. I haven't had a single issue.... None whatsoever.
  • Every time a "new" phone is released it is the best ever... as long as it is from Samsmug or Goofle. SMH
  • Someone has been paid off, Jesus Christ.
  • See? I told you the Pixel 4 would wind up on the "best" list no matter how many issues it had 😊
  • I am commenting based solely on the title of your article.. Its the best android phone cuz pixel = pure android.. next.
  • just make sure your as up to date on android as you are on openssh
  • The Pixel 4 XL is the WORST phone Google has made and there isn't anything it has to justify it's ridiculously expensive price. I'm glad I choose my 7T over this as it's better value and I get twice the amount of storage space and 8GB RAM as opposed to 6GB on the Pixel 4 XL which still has crap RAM management even with the added 2GB of RAM, and Oxygen OS is so far ahead of the Plxel software it's embarrassing with far more flexibility and customisation and smoother performance. I'm saying and typing this as a former Pixel fanboy turned OnePlus convert on my 7T.
  • LG released the G8 and these same reviewers called it over priced for what it offered. They went as far as saying it competed with the Galaxy S10e. Does anyone even remember that LG released it? How many articles did we get about it? A device with 128GB internal storage with an option to expand via a micro SD slot, similar secured 3D unlock as the Pixel 4 (which they brushed off as an unimportant feature until the Pixel 4 adopted it), solid cameras for photos AND video, subtle design (no camera bumps BTW), headphone jack with a DAC to die for, crystal sound OLED, haptics for days and more. The Pixel 4 and its XL are good devices, nothing more. They could have been great. They are not.
  • My opinion of the phone changed once I bought it. It is better than the Pixel 3 XL, which I used most of this year. When the Pixel 3 XL came out last year I hated it. The notch was huge and ugly and it was the worst phone Google ever made. All the things I thought would bother me, didn't. Yeah, this is just 2017 (and 2018) all over again. Google's phones get incrementally better each year. (I'm an Android guy. That's my bias, now you know.) Pixel phones are not worth full price. I only buy them at a discount...this year about $200 off. I can almost always charge up from 85% to full mid morning. Actual battery life is fine, I'm just never very confident about it. That is 6 to 7 hrs screen time on Wi-Fi, unplugged for 12 hours. Bottom line, most of the negative comments are from those who don't own the phone. Most of the positive ones are from people who do own the phone. This phone is the best phone I've used. Although it needs better battery life and 128 GB starting storage to begin to justify full price.
  • Here's a challenge: Post a screenshot of a Pixel 4 doing 120 hours on one charge with no power save features.
    Like this...
    https://photos.app.goo.gl/t9Siy9yyT7zZFZeC6 Or how about doing 7 hours of SOT with heavy video and gaming? Like this?
    https://photos.app.goo.gl/rNkj4d4JooVUHT3S9
    https://photos.app.goo.gl/FjFgKMc4R71bEP5y5
  • Is any android phone other than the pixels getting OS updates every month for three years? Does one plus apply the OS monthly updates? I'm not going backward and getting one or two at most OS security or enhancement updates during the life of a phone. That's why I use a Pixel and will stick with them unless proved differently. My pixel 2XL is running fine with Android 10. I think it started out running 8...
  • Found my justification for a new Pixel 4 XL. Read this and weep if you don't own a Pixel, https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.computerworld.com/article/3404896/andro... If you jump to the cheapest Apple iPhone version that provides what you really need, the cost is probably less per year.
  • If prolonged and regular software updates were the major consideration when android users bought phones, pixels would sell much better.
  • I'm really confused by all of the battery life talk and have yet to see a comparison against the 2/3/XL. Does it have better or worse battery life than them? I assume the 4 doesn't since the battery is smaller and there's no way I would get it after having the 3 but the 4 XL has a bigger battery.
  • Coming from a Pixel 2 I'm enjoying the Pixel 4. I do miss fingerprint and the lack of apps supporting face recog right now sucks. But other than that I love it. I've already grown used to Motion Sense to silence calls and skips tracks. I really didn't think I'd see much benefit to it but now I get slightly irritated if I have to pick up my phone to change tracks lol. Battery has been good for me, I'm no a video streaming social media pro user so my battery last a full days use + a little more. And coming from a two year old phone that battery wouldn't make it to lucnh time Pixel 4 has been good for me.
  • But, it cracks easily from the bend test by jerryrigeverything and only has 2 cameras with the Snapdragon 865 a few months away. No thanks.
  • Second review and the author sounds like he went completely to the opposite end of the spectrum. Since the Pixel 4 & 4XL phone came out every article on the web blasted this year's Pixel phone for coming up short on so many tangents. Now the author is singing a different song. C'mon now! Really bro??? Is Google making you drink the Kool Aid? The Pixel phone is horrible on so many points. Maybe next year's Pixel phone will be better. For now and until the Pixel 5 comes out, the Pixel 4 & Pixel 4XL are major, major, major disappointment, PERIOD.
  • Excellent review. It's those intangible mixtures of qualities plus one must-have feature that makes Pixel unique. I'm typing this on my "backup" Pixel XL while my 2XL & 3 sit stored away waiting for when I need them. Will definitely add a 4 to the stable.
  • I got my wife a Pixel 3A and she loves it. For $400, it's a bargain in the tradition of the Nexus phones. The 4 looks like a nice handset but not worth the extra bucks. She's happy with the 3A. As for me, my next phone will likely be an iPhone 11... as soon as they announce the 12 next year!
  • I’m tired of every time Google comes out with a new Pixel everyone jumps on it and says it’s the worst phone ever. Then, a couple months later after everything dies down everybody talks about how wonderful the phone is and how it should be phone of the year. All of it is just to get clicks on their articles. Either the phone is good or it isn’t. Stop this junk of going back-and-forth. Personally, I am a big fan of Pixels and have loved them since the beginning. I say that as I am using an iPhone X right now.
  • That's simply not true. Phones can get better or worse over time and clearly the 4 is getting better.
  • Everyone's whining about the price. Black Friday is literally a month away from its release, just wait, it's simple! If history repeats itself like it has with the pixel 2 and the pixel 3 we should be seeing the discounts in a bit anyway.
  • Pixel 4 XL is the best phone I have ever owned. The user experience is amazing
  • The whole Face Unlock would be more secure with the eyes open /attention aware feature is nonsense. It's been beat on iPhones already and is not secure. Google recommends the far more secure Lockdown feature instead and you can use it conveniently from the power button menu.
  • You are liking it & its gimmicks because you want to keep your job.
    Do not try to pull the wool over our eyes
  • Well this article proves they sold at least one Pixel 4 XL.
  • It would be a great buy at $500. Definitely not worth 899 for the xl. I'm giving up on Google, they cant get anything right other than their assitant and web browser.