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Google Unveils New Products

Google homepage phone laptop
A person using Google on both laptop and phone.

The new Google products were unveiled during an event they hosted Wednesday in San Francisco, California. The second-generation techs range from phones to laptops, a new camera and VR headset in answer to the surge of devices from its competitors, Apple Inc. and Amazon.com Inc.

Google’s Pixel smartphone was met with positive reviews when it launched last year. As 2017 near its end, the company decided to introduce the smartphone’s amped-up second-generation.

The smartphones will come in two sizes, the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL, coming at 5.5-inch and a 6-inch display. Google said that the two functions the same way and will only be different in its size. The Pixel 2 will launch in “kinda blue,” “just black” and “white”, while the bigger model will ship in black or black and white. The Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL will be on sale on October 19, starting at $649 and $849 respectively.

Pixelbuds, the earphones that go along with the headphone jack-less Pixel series, will arrive in November with the starting price of $149.

Pixelbook, the first laptop that will be powered by Google Assistant, will start $999. Google also said that the laptop will support Snap Inc.’s Snapchat. The 12.3-inch touchscreen can function as a tablet after folding in the keyboard behind its screen. It will be available by October 31.

Google’s Home Mini, priced at $49 in the U.S., will be available October 9, rivaling Amazon.com Inc.’s popular Echo Dot. The Home Max, which will take on more premium speakers in the market, will be on sale by the end of the year at $399.

Google also announced the new Google Daydream View VR headset which will cost $99. Pixel 2 smartphone owners will be able to watch IMAX movies at Google Play Movies for free.

Future of Google Hardware

Google Translate phone app
A phone showing the start-up screen of Google Translate phone app.

A month ago, Google picked up a 2,000-person smartphone engineering team from HTC for expansion of its hardware development capabilities for $1.1B.

According to Google CEO, Sundar Pichai, “We have improved our translation ability more in one single year than all our improvements over the last 10 years combined.”  He assured the investors last January that Google Translate is determined to make “big leaps” this year.

The new Pixelbuds made by Google will also provide easier translating capabilities through accessing Google Assistant by pressing a button built-in the right earbud.

Nest also assured their customers that their products and Google’s hardware will start working closer together. Videos taken by the Nest Camera can be seen through a Chromecast-connected TV by asking Google Home to do so.

Analysts estimated that Pixel smartphone’s sales reached more than 2 million with its debut a year ago. It pushed Google to record high amounts of advertising revenue.

According to analysts, “Google’s “other” revenue category, which includes both hardware and sales of online storage services, accounted for about 12 percent of overall sales in its most recent quarter.”

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