Google Pixel Feature Drop for June Brings Gemini AI to More Pixel Phones Along With Other Imaging Features

Google’s Pixel Feature Drop for June has finally started seeding to devices in India. Gadgets 360 can confirm the arrival of the latest update on a Pixel 8 Pro review unit. The update is being delivered as part of a 0.97GB security update. While the latest Feature Drop brings some new features for supported Pixel smartphones, the Pixel Watch models and the Pixel Tablet, not all of these features will be available to users in India. As for supported devices, the Gemini Nano AI model which was earlier limited to Google’s Pixel 8 Pro smartphone will now also be available on the Pixel 8 and the recently launched Pixel 8a. However, users of the latter two phones will need to enable the same under Developer options in Settings.

Gemini Nano on Pixel 8, Pixel 8a

Gemini Nano allows the Pixel 8 and Pixel 8a smartphones to perform more advanced AI-enabled features on-device. This would include powering the Summarise feature in the Recorder app which now — according to Google — works better, while delivering improved results and lets you export the transcripts to a Google Docs file. All the new Pixel smartphone models also get the ability to mirror content to an external display. This feature will require the user to possess a compatible USB Type-C cable and display as well.

Find My Device Offline Tracking, Best Take Expansion

The Find My Device network can now help a user locate their lost smartphone even when it is switched off. The feature now also works on devices with a dead battery. It uses Bluetooth technology and will require cell service or an internet connection. Google claims that the feature can help users locate their device (without power) for at least 23 hours. However, the feature is limited to Pixel 8 series of smartphones.

Meanwhile, the face swapping ability using the Best Take feature is now coming to the Pixel Tablet, Pixel Fold and the smartphones from the Pixel 6 series onwards. The new update also lets users perform a reverse search to quickly look up an unknown phone number directly from the call log.

Pixel Camera Improvements

Another handy improvement coming with this update is in the Pixel Camera app which now lets you manually pick which camera lens you want while taking photos. This only applies to the Pixel 6 Pro, Pixel 7 Pro and the Pixel Fold which have telephoto cameras. Previously, the camera would automatically pick a lens/camera (primary or telephoto) based on your distance from the subject. The Pixel 8 Pro introduced a new selection with its Pro mode called Lens Selection which lets a user select a lens or camera of choice manually, which overrides the automatic lens selection. While this reduces the number of digital stops when zooming in, it also provides better control for enthusiasts who don’t prefer digital crops with scaling.

Car Crash Detection on Pixel Watch, Home App Revamped

Coming to Pixel Watch, there’s now Car Crash Detection, which will call emergency services and preset contacts after a high-impact car crash has been detected. Car Crash Detection is available on the Pixel Watch 2 in India. The feature ideally needs the Pixel Watch to be paired to a Pixel smartphone to work properly as the Pixel Watch Wi-Fi may not be able to call all emergency numbers in all countries. Fall Detection (a previously available feature) has also been improved. In select countries Google will now also let you link your PayPal account to your Google Wallet.

Meanwhile the Home app has gotten a proper revamp on Wear OS letting you access Google Home devices faster with a single swipe on the watch. Lastly, the Pixel tablet will now receive richer doorbell notifications when docked giving users a better idea about a visitor at the door. It will also let the user talk with the person or even send across a quick response. However, the service requires a Nest Doorbell (wired, 1st and 2nd gen) or Nest Doorbell (battery) to be functional. Users will also need to update individual Google apps and services via the Play Store after installing the security update.

Google I/O 2023 saw the search giant repeatedly tell us that it cares about AI, alongside the launch of its first foldable phone and Pixel-branded tablet. This year, the company is going to supercharge its apps, services, and Android operating system with AI technology. We discuss this and more on Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast. Orbital is available on Spotify, Gaana, JioSaavn, Google Podcasts, Apple Podcasts, Amazon Music and wherever you get your podcasts.
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