Pixel device owners, start your Wi-Fi radios. The monthly security update for Pixel phones has been posted by Google. The updates are available as both direct download of the firmware and OTA files, but it should be showing up on at least a few phones starting today.
Google Lens is an incredibly powerful tool that probably gets used way too little — you need to know how to access it in the first place, and even though Google isn't shy about adding it almost anywhere you could think of, it might still not be as discoverable as the company would like it to be. That's probably why it's experimenting with adding it to the homescreen search bar on Pixel phones.
This story was originally published and last updated .
Got a Pixel? Then you've got one of the best damn cameras in all the Android land. But hold the phone: Your kickass camera can do even more than you realize.
Sure, it takes incredible pictures — but that's just scratching the surface of the Pixel camera advantage. Google's homemade phones have thoughtfully created photo-related software with all sorts of scrumptious smarts baked in. And that means they're overflowing with useful tricks and tucked-away options that are all too easy to overlook.
In honor of my new Pixel Academy e-course — a totally free seven-day email adventure that helps you uncover tons of next-level Pixel treasures — I wanted to share some of my favorite hidden Pixel camera possibilities with you, my favorite Android Police pals.
Google's Pixel updates for April are here. This isn't one of the big feature drop updates (that was last month), but device owners can look forward to the latest security patches and a handful of fixes and improvements. This time around, Google specifically calls out improved photo quality in some third-party apps and even GPU performance improvements for on the Pixel 4a 5G and Pixel 5, plus a handful of fixes addressing issues on several Pixel models, including a problem that dates back to a missing December Feature Drop feature.
Out with the old, in with the new: LineageOS cut support for Android 9 Pie earlier this year, and to make up for the loss, the open-source project has just released version 18.1 based on Android 11. It comes with official support for about 60 phones and tablets.
Following Verizon's early teasing, Google has just released details about the March 2021 Feature Drop update, which should be rolling out today. Pixel owners can look forward to enhanced underwater photography when paired with a specific case, expanded Smart Compose support for some messaging apps, a snazzy new bedtime screen when using the Pixel Stand and Clock app, and wallpapers for International Women's Day. On top of that, Google promises more fixes for Android Auto disconnection issues.
Before smartphone makers switched to edge-to-edge, nearly bezel-less designs, we had a small transition. Some smartphones rounded-off the corners of their rectangular screens to emulate the high-end look. In many cases, these phones actually just had square displays, and the effect was done in software, or via masking in the front glass. That includes the Pixel 3a. And unfortunately for folks that own one, that software masking broke at the end of last year.
The Google Camera app, an exclusive to the company's Pixel phones, has seen a spate of one-star reviews on the Play Store recently. In fact, its overall rating has declined over the last year and a half from 3.8 stars to 3.3, and details in the bulk of complaints may indicate that the well-known Pixel camera curse is spreading to affect more devices. However, Google tells us there aren't any known app or software issues related to the problem, implying the apparent increase in customer complaints is due to hardware damage.
February 2021 updates for Google's Pixels from the 3 series to the 5 are landing today. On top of your regularly scheduled security patches, Pixel owners can also look forward to two other changes: A fix for the Pixel 4a 5G's touchscreen issue (which apparently extends to the Pixel 5 as well), and an undefined "fix for issue preventing certain sensor detection on startup," which could be tied to the long-standing Pixel device sensor issue.