The long-awaited Google Pixel December Feature Drop is here, bringing multiple new features to Pixel devices, including a new AI model and the promised Pixel 8 Pro ‘Video Boost’ mode. Being the latest generation of Google flagship phones, the Pixel 8 and Pixel 8 Pro get some exclusive features with the December Feature Drop, which are mainly focused on AI and cameras. Google has been putting a lot of importance on artificial intelligence lately, and has now integrated an on-device AI model called Gemini Nano into the Pixel 8 Pro.
The model will now be in charge of some advanced AI-powered features such as Summarize in Recorder (generates a summary of your voice recordings), and Gboard Smart Reply (offers response suggestions according to the context of the conversation). Video Boost is a Pixel 8 Pro feature that adds multiple improvements such as better stabilization, lighting and noise reduction. It also works on night videos thanks to Night Sight, although these features do not work locally on the device but rather the videos are uploaded to the cloud to receive Google’s computational photography treatment.
On the Pixel 8 and 8 Pro, Timelapse mode is now combined with Night Sight to enhance the quality of this type of videos in nighttime scenarios. Of course, previous generations of Pixel devices are also getting improvements with the December Feature Drop, especially highlighting the enhanced Google Photos image processing and Webcam mode. Google Photos ‘Portrait light’ results have improved thanks to the implementation of a new AI model that processes shadows more effectively in this type of pics.
Photo Unblur is also better now thanks to a refined ‘sharpening’ process that will be especially noticeable in photos of your pets, even if they are a little restless in front of the camera. As leaked recently , the Pixel Fold receives a Dual Screen Preview for camera, allowing you to take the photo with the main foldable screen while a preview appears on the external screen. For Pixel Fold, Pixel 6 and newer generations, you can now use them as a webcam by connecting them via USB to a PC or laptop to significantly improve the quality of video calls compared to using integrated webcams.
All devices eligible for the Google Pixel December Feature Drop now have a ‘Clean’ option in Google Drive that allows you to remove smudges or unwanted elements from scanned documents. It also works with documents scanned directly from the device’s camera. Google also added improvements focused on strengthening the account security and data privacy of Google Pixel users.
The classic Google Password Manager will notify you of your passkey-compatible accounts and will help you enable it if you wish. You can learn more about Google’s passkey system here . ‘Repair Mode’ keeps all your personal data safe and private for when you have to send the device for technical service.
For Pixel Fold, Pixel 6 and newer generations, Call Screen feature will suggest automatic responses according to the context of the call so you don’t have to answer it personally. Also, Call Screen is compatible with your Pixel Watch to help you decide whether you want to take a call or not. Now you can set your phone to stay unlocked while your Pixel Watch is nearby so you don’t have to enter a pattern or fingerprint every time you use it.
Google also improved the audio and video calling experience on the Pixel Tablet, boosting its multimedia capabilities even further. ‘Clear Calling’ is another AI-powered feature coming to the Pixel Tablet to reduce background noise and improve audio quality during video calls. Pixel Tablet now offers spatial audio support for immersive sound on compatible services and headphones/earphones (like the Pixel Buds Pro).
Finally, there are a couple of improvements focused on the Clock app and the first-gen Pixel Watch functionality. Clock app ‘World Clock tab’ and widgets now include additional data such as weather conditions and daily forecasts. Now you can sync your Do Not Disturb and Bedtime settings between your Pixel devices and the original Pixel Watch, something you could only do with the Pixel Watch 2 until now.
Google has also included new watch faces and complications for more functionality and customization possibilities. .