December 1, 2023

With simply three works days at dwelling this week earlier than I go away for Seattle on Monday, every full of podcast recordings, conferences, and different distractions, time was of the essence: I needed to rise up and working with the Pixel 8 Professional and, ideally, the Pixel Watch 2, as rapidly as attainable. And … I did.

We flew dwelling from Mexico on Tuesday, and after arriving dwelling round time for supper, I wasted no time unboxing the Pixel 8 Professional and stepping by means of the preliminary configuration. Sadly, this configuration didn’t embrace transferring my T-Cell eSIM over to cellphone, as this course of requires me to interact the service’s buyer help system, which is an pointless time suck in its personal proper.

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Wednesdays are at all times busy between Home windows Weekly, which has was a three-hour dedication, and my regular work, however I discovered a while to put in many of the apps I take advantage of and configure a few of them. That night time, we had a previous dedication, nonetheless, so I didn’t have time to finish that course of not to mention transfer the eSIM.

On Thursday, I had a health care provider’s appointment within the morning, one which was additional away than anticipated with a 40-minute drive in each instructions, a gathering, and a second podcast to file, for Fingers-on Home windows. And that was an surprising slog as effectively, due to some technical issues, and I ended up being late for an additional prior dedication that night time, which meant I had little time to do something with the cellphone. However I had at the least woken up early that day, so I used that further time to configure the Pixel Watch 2, and actually wanted it, as that course of was surprisingly concerned.

After which at present got here: I once more wakened early, took photos of the Lenovo ThinkPad T14s I wrote up later that day, began backing up my images to the Google Pictures hooked up to my private Gmail account, and commenced work on Ask Paul early in order that it didn’t take all morning, because it usually does (and failed, however no matter). So there it was: About 12:45 pm, I had lower than an hour earlier than a Microsoft assembly, and I used to be bulk putting in my apps to the T14s as outlined in Roll Your Personal Home windows Time Machine (Premium), and I had a loopy thought.

Was this sufficient time to get the eSIM moved over?

It was, however solely as a result of my spouse didn’t want her cellphone throughout this time, permitting me to make use of that to speak to T-Cell buyer help in order that they might make the swap remotely. Which, truthfully, occurred in an inexpensive period of time given how tedious this may be. Lower than a half an hour later, the eSIM was up and working within the Pixel—I had taken the suitable steps to sever the hyperlinks to iMessage and Facetime first, which at all times causes issues throughout such a swap—and after a surprisingly quick assembly, I lastly had a while to write down a bit and finalize the Pixel configuration.

Or, at the least get it into a fairly workable state, I suppose. Google supplies a shocking array of options and choices to configure in its extremely optimized and closely modified Android model for Pixels, and it’ll take some time earlier than I get to all of them. (For instance, one in all my favourite Pixel options is humorously referred to as “Flip to Shhh.” It’s not enabled by default, however when it’s, it places the cellphone in Silent mode while you place it face down on a desk or different flat floor. Genius.)

However I’m doing fairly effectively right here, and this ought to be comparatively full by the point I head to the airport on Monday. Sooner or later, I put in the remainder of the apps I would wish, laid out the house display screen—I at all times use a single dwelling display screen—ran and configured every app with no matter person account, cellphone quantity, or no matter every wanted, downloaded some content material in YouTube Music for offline use on the approaching flights, and carried out all of the busy work that’s required on a clear set up as I desire.

And that implies that tonight, after we head out once more, for the third of three nights in a row, I’ll lastly have the ability to take the Pixel 8 Professional with me. Between the three weeks I waited to get the machine and the three additional days it took me to get it absolutely configured, it felt like an eternity.

The Pixel is, after all, acquainted. And in transferring to it over the previous few days, I’m reminded of these issues I very a lot desire on Android/Pixel, and people issues which are higher on the iPhone I’m forsaking. Android’s notification system is an enormous enchancment over what Apple gives, although I’ll miss the elegant Dynamic Island and the iPhone’s superior gesture navigation. And AirPlay, after all.

However I take advantage of plenty of Google apps and providers and little or no in the best way of Apple apps and providers, and that eases this type of transition. I moved to a mixture of Google and Microsoft Authenticator apps, and since Google Authenticator now helps account sync, transferring over all of these accounts, normally a guide and time-consuming course of, occurred within the blink of an eye fixed. Fantastic.

This Pixel can also be in some methods unfamiliar too, after all. The up to date digital camera system, with its three high-resolution lenses and extra advanced however highly effective Professional Digital camera app would require a while, for instance. However I took the pictures of the ThinkPad T14s with this cellphone, and am fairly proud of the outcomes, particularly the portrait mode stuff. And in utilizing the Pixel digital camera system, even a bit, I’m reminded of all of the issues I desire about it when in comparison with the iPhone: It simply appears simpler to get the image I anticipate on Pixel.

Google had beforehand launched a Magic Eraser characteristic in Google Pictures, however with the Pixel 8 Professional, you get an much more superior characteristic referred to as Magic Editor that lets you choose objects in a photograph (by tapping or circling them) after which transfer or delete them. And … yikes. After only a few quick exams, it’s fairly clear that this AI-based performance is legit: the editor normally fills within the space the place an object was very precisely, with no telltale smudges or different indicators of an edit. This makes me need to revisit images from the previous and see what I can do to enhance them.

And so I did simply that, utilizing the latest previous as a take a look at. Think about this picture of a big Day of the Useless character in Mexico Metropolis’s Zocalo, in entrance of the Nationwide Palace. May Magic Editor really take away him from the picture and precisely recreate the background?

Why sure it might.

I additionally observed that the Pixel 8 Professional was charging a lot sooner than its predecessors, one thing that has been a sore spot for this product line for a very long time. The Pixel 7 Professional, for instance, might solely cost at 22 watts, and a full cost might take so long as two hours. However the Pixel 8 Professional gave the impression to be charging at speeds extra akin to the iPhone, and so I seemed it up. Based on the Google Retailer web site, the Pixel 8 Professional can cost at as much as 30 watts, which is a pleasant enchancment, and since I’m utilizing a 30-watt charger with USB-PD 3.0 (PPS) as Google recommends, I should be getting the very best expertise. Good.

In fact, it’s not clear but whether or not the Pixel 8 Professional battery life additionally rises to the problem, one other space during which latest Pixels have fallen in need of the iPhone competitors. However I’ll discover out with some real-world use. (After which discover out what a full cost seems like too.)

Anyway. There’s a lot to look at right here. And now, lastly, I’ll.