Update: We've received a statement from a Google spokesperson, who says that "[Google] will be rolling out a software update in the coming weeks to address the rare case of a photo not properly saving." We'll refresh this article once that software update comes, and report back with our findings.
The Google Pixel 3 and 3XL are top-notch phones with top-notch cameras — even if only one has a notch — and they are looking to continue the tradition of industry-leading smartphone photography quality. Night Sight and Top Shot are making users and manufacturers sit up and take notice, but there's been something weird happening to some users in the Pixel 3's short life that's making us take notice for very different reasons.
The Google Pixel 3 hasn't been saving some photos, and that's not a bug you should be seeing on an $800 phone.
This was a problem our own Daniel Bader first noticed and reported back on October 15th, and he is not alone. Dozens and dozens have spoken up on Twitter and in this issue tracking Reddit post Android Police's Artem Russakovskii has been updating on /r/Android. It is worth noting that this is a problem that isn't unheard of on Android phones, and in fact previous Pixel and Pixel 2 users have seen this happen a time or two.
Usually, a photo not saving has to do with a memory issue of some kind, which is why the phones that are more prone to this behavior are more budget-minded phones, not $800 flagships. The Google Pixel 3 and 3 XL, despite the robust processing power of the Snapdragon 845 and Pixel Visual Cores, only come with 4GB of RAM, which can lead to problems once you start trying to hop between multiple apps and music/podcast apps shutting down unexpectedly while playing in the background. It's something we worried might limit future performance in our Pixel 3 review.
Now, we don't know what this problem is yet, and we can't be sure that it's a memory limitation. It could be a bug in the Google Camera app, or it could be a software bug in the Google Pixel 3's system, or it could be a driver issue. We just don't know yet.
But we do know it shouldn't be happening.
Have you noticed photos you swore you took missing from your camera roll or Google Photos on your Pixel 3 or Pixel 3 XL? Have you noticed it happening more under any specific conditions? Have you reached out to Google Pixel Support after your issues? Let us know!
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