Google has introduced the new Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL smartphones in New York, and the two devices come with camera upgrades, improved Google Lens support, and a new AR sticker mode called Playground. This mode brings a more powerful AR experience than before, allowing users to snap photos and selfies with additional animated characters or text in the frame. Playground brings Playmoji – a slew of animated characters that react to each other and to you as well. Playground works both on the back camera and in selfie mode, allowing users to get creative and add fun superhero Playmojis in their photos and videos. Furthermore, Google Lens gets a new Lens suggestions feature on the new Pixel smartphones, and a new shortcut to improve the experience.
The new Pixel devices have a Playground mode that suggests AI content for users. It allows users to add Playmoji characters which include superheroes like Iron Man, and animated stickers for social play. It also works in selfie mode so you can pretend like you’re standing next to the characters you love, like Iron Man from the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Google notes that new packs for Weather, Pets, Sports and Signs have been added to Playground, and the Childish Gambino packs in coming later in the year, and it will allow users to mimic dance steps and moves.
Playground also supports scene recognition, and suggests content to play around with based on the scene you are in. “Are you walking your dog? Cooking in the kitchen? Gardening in the backyard? Playground uses advanced computer vision and machine learning to recommend relevant Playmoji, stickers and captions to populate the scene,” the tech giant notes on its blog. All of the content you make using Playground is shareable on social media as well.
Google has also improved the Google Lens experience by adding a feature called Lens Suggestions. The feature essentially recognises common actions using the main camera itself, and doesn’t require an Internet connection either. It uses the Pixel Visual Core chip to save phone numbers from business cards or take-out menu ,or send an email from a flyer. A new shortcut has also been added to start Lens, and long-pressing inside the main camera will do the trick. The new phones also make Lens more accessible from the recent apps screen. Just drag up from the home button and long press on an image to search for it via Lens. This is particularly useful when you see a product while browsing and wish to see if it is available online for purchase somewhere.
Can Google Pixel 3 succeed in India without massive discounts? We discussed this on Orbital, our weekly technology podcast, which you can subscribe to via Apple Podcasts or RSS, download the episode, or just hit the play button below.