Google Pixel 2 ~ Android’s finest?

Before I begin, this is a review of the smaller Pixel 2 and not the 2 XL which I reviewed here.

The Google Pixel 2 was released in October 2017 and came straight out the gates with the highest rated camera on any smart phone from DxO Mark.

I touched on this in my 2 XL review so won’t go into the similar things too much, I’ll focus on the Pixel 2 features not found on the larger XL model.

I have the Really White Pixel 2.


Pixel 2


Ok so the bezels are huge. Compared to the larger XL they’re a sore point, they’re very dated and don’t look great next to the more popular XL.

I think it’s a shame because the display is very good for 5″ 1080p screen and the back design is simple but smart. It feels like Google had no choice with this due to HTC just not being able to shrink the bezels like LG could for the XL model, thankfully Google have bought up a lot of HTC and maybe the Pixel 3 will be far better with the bezels.


  • The single camera bump is hardly noticeable and the front dual stereo speakers are awesome, there is no headphone jack and just a charging port on the bottom.
  • It feels really good in the hand, its got a white coating over an aluminium back which feels grippy and looks good.
  • I just wish the screen was bumped up to Quad HD for videos and YouTube, the big bezels kind of take you out of the video unlike the 2 XL or iPhone X.

The rest of the specs match the 2 XL so nothing major between them except the screens.

The Bread and Butter

Android Oreo came installed but as with all Pixel devices this gets the newest updates from Google so it’s now running Android Oreo 8.1 with February security update.

Its fast, plain and simply you won’t get anything running Android as buttery smooth as this. I love the animations and little UI touches like colour coded music players on the notification drop down.

Pixel 2 and Pixel 1


The big deal, the main event, the camera is just unreal on this thing and you’ll never want to use anything else for photos. It’s a simply UI camera app but the background work from Google on a single lens is just fantastic, it also now comes with OIS unlike the Pixel 1.

8.1 brought AR stickers to the camera app on Pixel 1 and 2, they’re great fun and just received some new stickers last week for winter. You can drop animated stickers into a photo or video from the camera app and share them, they’re more fun than Animoji for sure.

Portrait mode is here on both cameras and it’s very good and easily matches the iPhone version, It renders the back perfectly in most cases and works best in bright conditions.

Portrait mode on the Pixel 2 works great.

Size matters?

This phone is just fun, it’s fast and fun to use and even though the bezels are huge compared to the 2 XL and iPhone X, they’re not huge next to the iPhone 8 which match it ironically.

The battery is standard and lasts the whole day but comes with fast charging out the box.

You might be fine with this device because it won’t cost you a months wage and leave you eating beans on toast. It’s a good size at 5″ and quite thin so would suit anyone after a phone you can use with one hand.

I found the 2 XL just too big for me to use one-handed so now the Pixel 2 is my go to Android device.

Live wallpaper

The Pixel 2 is a great device only let down by the large bezels, it might not look as cool from the front but the back is awesome and I prefer it over the iPhone X.

The camera is superb and you won’t be let down with this if photos is your preference in choosing a new phone, it runs smooth and gets security updates on time so what else would you want from a phone?

  • Smaller bezels?
  • Wireless charging?
  • Quad HD screen?

It’s not perfect but then nothing is right now, It’s just a shame the 2 XL looks so much nicer and that’s its biggest issue for me.

Swipe Down Score ~ 4/5


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