Google likes to add new and exclusive features to Pixel phones, and the latest feature drop just arrived. Now, Pixel phones can backup audio recording to a new site that adds transcription and sharing features. If you have the Kraken Sports’ underwater case, you can use Pixel’s excellent camera for your underwater photos. And Pixel phones get new bedtime features, wallpapers, and more.
All the new features are hitting Pixel 3 and news phones, and according to Google, some users have them now. Google says the features will roll out to other users over the next two weeks, so if you don’t have them, you should soon.
The audio recording update may be the most immediately useful feature. Pixel owners could already record audio, share, and transcribe in the Pixel-exclusive Recorder app. You can now back those recordings to the new Recorder website, where you can access transcriptions and share them with people who don’t own a Pixel. It’s similar to Otter.ai functionality but without a subscription. The backup feature will let you take your audio recordings forward to new Pixel phones—previously, you’d lose them when upgraded.
The update also improves support for the Kraken Sports underwater housing. Previously if you wanted to use the case to take underwater photos, you had to use Kraken’s camera software. But Google’s photo software is far superior to just about everyone’s, which meant a downgrade in picture quality. Now when you use the $325 universal accessory, you can choose to take pictures from the Pixel’s native camera app instead, an excellent step up for underwater photos.
If you’re a fan of Google’s Smart Compose, the company’s text predictive algorithm that suggests words before you even start typing them, then there’s good news for you too. Smart Compose will show up in more apps with the latest feature drop, including Android Messages, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and Slack.
If you have a Pixel Stand, you’ll see a new bedtime screen with new notifications designed to “ease you to sleep.” And it’s not an update without wallpapers, and the latest bath features images that “celebrate different cultural moments throughout the year with artwork from artists around the world.”