Google's new software update tries to fix the Pixel 4's awful battery life

Google Pixel 4 XL
Google Pixel 4 XL (Image credit: Andrew Martonik / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Pixel 2 and newer devices are getting an improved Adaptive Battery feature to further extend battery life.
  • Safety check is being added to allow for automatic location sharing when traveling alone, and in some cases, for automatic emergency calls
  • The Recorder app is getting tighter integration with Google Docs, along with picking up Google Assistant help.

Google is continuing to bring new and updated features to the Pixel software experience as the devices age, helping them stay relevant longer. Today, there are some helpful and important new features heading to Pixel devices that further integrate with our lives.

Pixel devices already have emergency contact features built-in, along with the Trusted Contacts app, both with the goal of adding some safety to your phone. With the new safety check option within the Safety app, you'll be able to do things like schedule a check-in with your emergency contacts of choice in times when you may be traveling alone.

You can tell the app what you're doing and how long it should take you to complete your travel. At the end of that time frame, the app will open up and ask you if you've made it to your destination safely, if you need to send your location to your emergency contacts, or if the app should dial 911. If you don't select an option, the app will automatically notify your emergency contacts within 60 seconds.

Pixel Bedtime Feature (Image credit: Google)

Pixel Crisis Alert (Image credit: Google)

Source: Google

Another feature that many Pixel 2 and newer users generally forget about is Adaptive Battery. It is responsible for learning how you use your device and adjusting background services to improve battery life. Google is updating this app to improve its ability to predict how much battery is left and adjust phone operations to optimize the remaining battery best.

An app that rarely sees any updates is the Clock app, but it's also getting some love. Google is adding a Bedtime feature within the app to help with maintaining a consistent sleep schedule and give you a better idea of what may be cutting into your sleep time. Once you set up what you hope to be your bedtime, the app will keep track of your screen time, showing you what you're doing when you should be sleeping. You'll all so see upcoming calendar events at a glance.

When the Pixel 4 was released, it brought the Recorder app that offered real-time transcription of any recordings you made. In today's update, it's getting better integration with Google Docs so that you can share transcripts more simply with others and keep everything better organized. It's also gaining Google Assistant integration that will allow you to start, stop, and search recordings using only your voice.

Source: Google

On top of all of this, Pixel devices are also picking up new Pride-themed customizations. There are going to be wallpapers and ringtones created by LGBTQ+ artists as well as a new Duo Pride AR filter for your video calls. The Pride features will be rolling out in early June in time for International Pride Month.

Chris Wedel
Smart Home Writer
Chris Wedel is a fan of all things tech and gadgets. Living in rural Kansas with his wife and two young boys makes finding ways to get and stay online tricky. By utilizing his years of experience with the tech and mobile communications industries — success is assured. When not conquering connectivity challenges and testing new gadgets, he enjoys cruising a gravel road in his UTV with some good tunes.