June 16, 2024

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Google's Pixel 8 series will put the best cameras back on the biggest phone

Google’s Pixel 8 series will put the best cameras back on the biggest phone

If you’re a fan of Google’s Pixel range and want the best possible camera performance, there’s been only one real option over the past couple of years: You can buy the biggest phone. The Pixel 7 and 7 Pro share the same primary sensor, but the larger device has an ultra-wide camera (thanks to the wider field of view) and a telephoto lens with 5x optical zoom. As for the upcoming Pixel 8 and 8 Pro, it looks like the company will continue the trend of giving the more expensive phone a visual edge.

Last year, the telephoto lens was the big story, but in 2023 it’s the ultrawide camera that’s reportedly made the leap — but only in one of the two phones, of course.

Android Authority Apparently earned Camera specifications for the upcoming Google Pixel duo, which we expect to be shown in October. Both will share the same 50MP Samsung Isocell GN2 primary sensor, which is larger than the GN1 used in the Pixel 7 series and should therefore capture more light for everyday shots. Google at least maintains parity when it comes to the camera you’ll rely on the most (and in dark conditions).

The 8 Pro’s ultrawide camera will use the same sensor as the 7A’s main camera

But the ultrawide camera is where bigger changes await. While the Pixel 8 will continue to use the Sony IMX386 dating back to the Pixel 6, the 8 Pro upgrades to a 64MP Sony IMX787 sensor. like Android Authority Note, this is what the recent $499 Pixel 7A uses for the main camera. My colleague Allison Johnson found it more than enough for a main shooter, so I can only imagine the Pixel 8 Pro’s ultrawide shots will be more detailed and less muddy.

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Like the Pixel 7 shown here, the Pixel 8 will come with a much less wide camera — and no telephoto lens at all.
Photo: Amelia Hollowaty Krales/The Verge

On the bright side for Pixel 8 buyers, Google has at least expanded the field of view from 0.67x to 0.55x; Which puts it on par with the Pixel 7 Pro — the Pixel 7 wasn’t super fast Feel Ultra wide, if you know what I mean – but the 8 Pro’s ultrawide will cram more into the shot with its 0.49x field of view.

The Pixel 8 Pro’s telephoto camera appears again to be a 48MP Samsung system capable of 5x optical zoom. Perhaps most surprisingly, Google will stick with the same 11MP Samsung sensor as last year for its selfie camera. I’ve noticed Pixel 7 and 7 Pro owners complaining about how they look on video calls compared to other recent photos. Ideally, Google has made improvements to the lens hardware (or in the software) to achieve better results for the Pixel 8 range.

I’m a big phone person, and based on the early leaks we’ve seen so far, Google has addressed my biggest frustration with the Pixel 6 Pro and 7 Pro; The curved display is finally history. So I’m excited the Pixel 8 Pro will debut this fall, but I still feel like people would like Google to outfit the Pixel 8 with an equal camera cutout.

Just remember that, especially when it comes to Google, computational photography and software tricks are the name of the game. We might see the company’s amazing Magic Editor tool for the first time alongside the Pixel 8 series (if not before), and if you thought the Magic Eraser was cool, it’s an even more significant step in AI-based photo editing — no matter what. The phone size you prefer.

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