Google Pixel 2 launch event: Live updates

Oct. 04, 2017 11:58 AM ETAlphabet Inc. (GOOG)GOOG, GOOGLBy: Brandy Betz, SA News Editor66 Comments
  • Google  (GOOG, GOOGL) will begin its launch event at 12 pm ET. Stream the event live here.
  • Check back for live updates.
  • Update:  Hardware SVP Rick Osterloh says there are now 55M Chromecast devices around the world. Google Wi-Fi is the top selling mesh router in US and Canada. Assistant can now answer 100M new answers.
  • "AI + software + hardware" is the event motto.
  • Google Home products: 
  • Update:  Home Product Management VP Rishi Chandra says Google Home will launch in Japan later this week.
  • Voice Match, the Home's voice recognition and customization feature, will launch to all regions this week.
  • Starting today, users can use their own phone number for calling through the Home., taking on Amazon's Echo calling push Hands-free calling coming to the UK later this year.
  • Update: As expected and leaked by Walmart pre-orders, Google Home Mini is the new smaller, budget-friendly addition to the Assistant family.
  • The Mini, which looks a bit like a fabric-covered hockey puck, comes in three colors and retails for $49. Pre-orders start today with launch on October 19.
  • Mini will come to all seven Google Home countries.
  • Update: The new smart home Nest products revealed a couple of weeks ago get some stage time to show off how the products can combine with the Google Assistant to create routines.
  • Routines can let a user turn on/off smart home features with a simple command like "good morning." Amazon announced a similar setup at its surprise hardware event last week.
  • Update:  The new Broadcast feature sends the same message to all Google devices in the house.
  • Kid-friendly features coming to Home including parental controls for accounts and a partnership with Disney.
  • Update:  Introducing the Google Home Max, an audio-focused smart speaker meant to take on Sonos speakers, Apple’s upcoming HomePod, and Amazon’s recently announced Echo Plus.
  • The 4.5-in woofers offer sound 20x stronger than the Google Home and has "smart sound" that can adjust the sound to the size and layout of the room.
  • Home Max costs $399 and launches in the US in December, the same month as the HomePod. Additional markets will come next year.
  • The Max comes with a free year of YouTube Red.
  • Google Pixelbook laptop: 
  • Update: Also as expected, here comes the Google Pixelbook laptop, which is 10mm thin and 1kg light.
  • Key specs: 12.3-in touchscreen, Quad HD LCD, 235 ppi, Intel’s Core i5 and i7 processors, up to 16GB RAM and 512GB storage, and 10 hours battery life.
  • Pixelbooks can “instant tether” to a Pixel phone, comes with Google Assistant pre-installed, and can run a user’s favorite mobile apps including a custom-built Snap experience coming soon.
  • Pricing starts at $999 with three configurations available and the Pen costing an extra $99. Pre-orders start today, available on October 31. Initial launch covers US, Canada, and UK.
  • Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL: 
  • Update: As expected (again), two new Pixel 2 smartphones with a smaller 5-in. device and the 6-in. XL option.
  • Update:  The all-aluminum bodies feature a glass visor and both include a fingerprint sensor, unlike Apple’s premium iPhone X.
  • No headphone jack, but an adapter is included and there is Bluetooth 5.0 support for wireless headphones.
  • The Pixel 2 has a full HD OLED display and comes in three colors: Black, Kinda Blue, and Clearly White.
  • Pixel 2 XL has a pOLED screen with QHD+ and comes in Black or Black and White.
  • ”Active Edge” lets users launch Assistant with a squeeze and can use the Broadcast and routine features through the phone.
  • Update:  The Lens feature in the phones uses machine learning to recognize and optionally provide information about items and people in the image.
  • The phones were also built with AR in mind, like the new iPhones, and the company has some exclusive Star Wars content.
  • The Pixel 2 has one camera on the back that’s still capable of portrait mode thanks to machine learning.
  • Pixel 2 users will receive free, unlimited photo storage.
  • Pixel 2 starts at $649 for 64GB and Pixel 2 XL starts at $849. Pre-orders start today in US, Australia, Germany, India, the UK, and Canada. Exclusive partnership with Verizon in the US.
  • Google Home Mini tossed in free with Pixel 2 purchase for limited time.
  • VR and Clips camera: 
  • Update: New Google Daydream View VR headsets with upgraded lenses and over 250 VR titles available. Headsets will cost $99.
  • Google Pixel Buds are the new touch-activated wireless headphones with Assistant integration.  Cost $159 with pre-orders starting today.
  • Google Clips is a small “hands-free camera” that can clip onto things or simply rest on a table. Users can “teach” the camera’s built-in machine learning what people or places are most important to the user. Eventually, the camera will take its own pictures of what it thinks the user wants to see.
  • Users can swipe within the app to save images to Google Photos. The images don’t get stored to the cloud automatically.
  • Clips is “coming soon” for $249.

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