Google’s Pixel phones have long been lauded as the perfect way to get a minimalist, intuitive Android experience. Google sells a variety of Pixel phones at various price points, but they all land in the midrange to “premium midrange” price category — and they’re among the strongest phones in that price range.
Although Pixel devices have a near-stock Android experience, they are not without personality. Google Pixel phones also have a host of features that make them easy to use and more portable.
Do you want to hear more about your Google Pixel phone? Here are seven features you really didn’t realise your Pixel phone was capable of.
Gestures detected by fingerprint sensors
Did you realize that your Pixel phone’s fingerprint sensor would do more than just open it? In reality, it can function as a tiny touch surface to assist you in performing such movements. For eg, you can open the notification shade by swiping down on the fingerprint sensor. Of default, this would not function on the Pixel 4 series since the Pixel 4 lacks a fingerprint sensor.
To allow this function, go to Settings > System > Gestures. Then, next to Swipe Fingerprint for Notifications, switch on the toggle.
Can be used as a wireless charger:
If you own a Pixel 5, you are now equipped with a wireless charging pad. This is due to the Pixel 5’s support for Google’s Battery Share functionality, which allows you to charge Qi-compatible devices by placing them on its back.
When you connect a USB-C cable to the computer, the function activates automatically. If it finds a Qi-compatible gadget on it, it will switch on for a brief period of time and then continue on and operate normally; otherwise, it will turn off.
You may also switch on Battery Share manually by opening the Settings app, going to Battery > Battery Share, and clicking on the Battery Share toggle.
Always know the song playing around you.
Google is pretty good at detecting what songs are playing in your surroundings, which may be useful if you want to hear what songs are playing at all times. The function is called Now Playing, and if you allow it, Google can view the music that is currently playing in your area on the lock screen.
To allow Now Playing, go to Sound & Vibration > Advanced > Now Playing in the Settings app. Show Songs on Lock Screen should be allowed. Your phone will then download a music library, and you will get notifications about the songs played on your lock screen automatically.
You will even have a complete history of the music you’ve just played. To view the timeline, launch the Settings app and navigate to Sound & Vibration > Advanced > Now Playing > Now Playing Past.
Check your notification just by lifting your phone:
Want to find things easy to search for your phone’s notifications? You may review your messages simply by raising your mobile. To activate this option, open the Settings window, then navigate to System > Gestures > Lift to Check Phone, and then toggle the switch to the on position.
Quickly open your camera
If you want to be allowed to use the camera as soon as possible? The easiest way to reach the camera on your Google Pixel phone is to double-tap the power icon, which you can do at any moment, whether the phone is locked or not.
The function could be available by now, but if it isn’t, open the Settings window, navigate to System > Gestures > Quickly Open Camera, and toggle it on. After that, you can open the camera by double-pressing the power button.
Squeeze to access Google Assistant.
If you’re heavily invested in the Google community, you’ve already used Google Assistant on a daily basis. Google Assistant is pretty simple to reach on Pixel phones. You may, for example, use the usual “Hey Google” hotword. You may even swipe up from the display’s corner. Finally, you should pinch the sides of your compatible handset.
To use this function, launch the Settings app and navigate to System > Gestures > Active Edge. Then, you’ll be able to activate the function, adjust the intensity, enable the feature to operate even when the screen is off and decide whether or not to use the same motion to silence your computer.
Screen your calls before you answer them
Do you seem to get a number of spam calls? Maybe it’s time to hire an associate to handle the phone calls for you. Fortunately, you don’t have to pay for an advisor because Google Assistant will handle everything.
Google Assistant will answer a call and question who is calling and why they are calling using this function. If the call is a robotic request, the Assistant will hang up, but if it is a human user, it will ring your phone and display the caller’s details.
There are a couple of items to keep in mind. To begin, you can use call screening manually when you get a call by tapping on the Screen Call button — you do not need to unlock the function to use it. Alternatively, you may configure the function to activate automatically if you get a call from an undisclosed amount.
To do so, launch the Phone app, then press the menu button at the end, then Settings, and finally the Spam and Call Screen button. Then, under Unknown Call Settings, tap Call Screen and pick the categories of calls you want to screen. You may either choose to ring your handset, screen calls and reject robocalls immediately, or quietly decline calls.