Pixel 5, Pixel Feature Drop

Google’s latest feature drop brings tons of new features along with support for older Pixel Phones

Google, Pixel

If you used one of the older Pixel Phones and wanted the features from the latest Pixel 5, you don’t have to upgrade your device anymore. Google has brought in an early Christmas Gift as the December’s feature drop.

At the cost of restricting applications and other power-chewing components, you’ll get the promised Intense Battery Saver mode to wring out extra battery life. The modified Google Photos editor uses AI to propose edits that can be rendered with a single tap. Adaptive Sound increases the performance of your phone speaker based on ambient noise, and for group calls, Google Duo now supports screen sharing. Meanwhile, the Assistant-powered Hold for Me will save you the hassle of listening to music during help calls while waiting.

New functionality to maintain the battery’s long-term health will be provided by some Pixel phones receiving this feature drop: Adaptive Charging. Google claims Adaptive Charging “helps preserve battery health over time by dynamically controlling how quickly a Pixel device charges” when plugged in overnight, similar to the implementations we’ve seen from other smartphone manufacturers. Pixels 4 and newer are coming up with this.

The function of Adaptive Sound, which leaked last week. It utilises the microphone on the unit to continuously re-tune the performance of the speaker to suit the environment. That sounds a lot like the latest Sonos speakers’ real-time changes, like the use of Shift, curious given the ongoing litigation. The Pixel 4a 5G and Pixel 5 will also get more detailed GPS when walking, with the Live View AR navigation sure to be helpful, and Google Lens will be able to translate websites and applications from the Overview/multitasking menu of the camera.

The features of the Pixel 5 are coming to the 3 and 4 series just weeks after the initial Google update. Although there are still incentives to purchase the newer phones, the decline in the Google feature makes it clear that thanks to tech, the older Pixel will remain largely important.