Google Pixel 3 XL vs. Google Pixel XL: Should you upgrade?
Latest and greatest
Outdated by comparison
The Pixel 3 XL is Google's best phone to date. With a huge 6.3-inch screen backed by stereo speakers, the phone offers considerable upgrades from the first-gen Pixel. But where the Pixel 3 XL truly shines is in the camera department — simply put, it has the best cameras you'll find on a phone today.
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- Stunning cameras.
- Fantastic OLED display.
- Wireless charging.
- Stereo speakers.
- Sizeable notch.
- No headphone jack.
The Pixel XL is now starting to show its age, particularly when it comes to the design side of things. The 16:9 display looks ancient in 2018, and although the Pixel 3 XL sports a notch, it offers a significantly larger screen in a chassis that isn't all that bigger than the Pixel XL.
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- Great camera.
- 3.5mm jack.
- Huge bezels.
- No waterproofing.
- No wireless charging.
The Pixel line always stood out for its great cameras, and with the Pixel 3 XL, Google is introducing a slate of new features that allow the phone to stand out. Chief among them is the upgrades to the camera, and the switch to the 19:9 form factor means you get a larger screen in roughly the same size.
Reasons to upgrade to the Pixel 3 XL
The Pixel 3 XL is Google's best showing yet in the smartphone segment. The phone has Gorilla Glass 5-backed glass at the front and back, but the back has an etched texture that's designed to mimic a matte metallic finish.
It feels like the phone is made out of polycarbonate when you first pick it up, and the unique texture allows the Pixel 3 XL to stand out in a sea of glass-backed devices. The metallic chassis of the Pixel XL is much more durable, but the Pixel 3 XL definitely looks more premium.
|Category||Pixel 3 XL||Pixel XL|
|Operating system||Android 9 Pie||Android 9 Pie|
Gorilla Glass 5
Gorilla Glass 4
|Processor||Qualcomm Snapdragon 845
Pixel Visual Core
|Qualcomm Snapdragon 821|
|Rear camera||12.2MP, 1.4-micron, PDAF
|12.3MP, 1.55-micron, PDAF
|Front camera 1||8MP, auto focus
f/1.8, 75-degree lens
|8MP, f/2.4, 1.4-micron|
|Front camera 2||8MP, fixed focus
f/2.2, 97-degree lens
|Connectivity||Wi-Fi 802.11ac 2x2 MIMO, Bluetooth 5.0 LE, NFC, GPS||Wi-Fi 802.11ac, Bluetooth 4.2, NFC, GPS|
|Charging||18W USB-C PD
|Security||Fingerprint sensor||Fingerprint sensor|
|Dimensions||158.0 x 76.7 x 7.9mm
|154.7 x 75.7 x 8.5mm
|Colors||Just Black, Very White, Not Pink||Quite Black, Very Silver, Really Blue|
With Google switching to an 18.5:9 form factor, the Pixel 3 XL offers a 6.3-inch display in a chassis that's not noticeably larger than that of the Pixel XL. The downside is that the phone has an ungainly notch; even by Android standards, the display cutout on the Pixel 3 XL is hideous. That's the tradeoff for the dual front cameras and stereo sound.
If you're rocking the Pixel XL, it's time for an upgrade.
The Pixel 3 XL is leagues ahead of the first-gen Pixel when it comes to the camera side of things. Google crammed a ton of camera features on the phone, including a Night Sight feature that lets you capture drastically better photos in low-light conditions, and you can interact with more AR-themed effects.
Some of the new camera features will be making their way to the Pixel XL, but the 3 XL has an upper hand thanks to the dedicated Pixel Visual Core chip. And while there isn't a headphone jack, Google is including a pair of USB-C earbuds in the box with every Pixel 3 XL.
Latest and greatest
A true flagship with the best cameras on Android today.
The Pixel 3 XL features an OLED panel that is easily the best Google put on a phone to date. You also get the latest software features, wireless charging, and a chassis that's resistant to the elements. Combine that with the best cameras on a phone today and you get quite a potent package.
Outdated by comparison
The two-year-old Pixel XL is showing its age.
The Pixel XL is still a great device in its own right, but the 16:9 display looks dated in 2018, and you're getting vastly superior cameras with the Pixel 3 XL. Now is the time to upgrade to Google's latest.
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