Many of you have asked: ‘Dude. You’re partnering up with Google?! What?! That’s unreal, tell us more!’ Well to be fair, I couldn’t say much back then, since I didn’t even know much.
Well it’s a lot. And I’ll do my best to convey it all in words.
I get an email from my friend Zamour on the morning of September 15th, 2016, asking if I was interested in potentially working on something with Google. At a loss for words, I scramble to gather myself and answer with a ‘YES’ among other words to show my appreciation and interest. I wasn’t sure that what I’d be doing, but I was beyond excited to combine Google’s technology with my work. There was so much potential! Fast forward a little bit, I’m at the #madebygoogle event where Google finally unveils the Pixel, a phone that went beyond my expectations in terms of what it had to offer.
So I had the once in a lifetime opportunity to partner up with Google Canada for the Pixel phone launch. Initially, I was taken aback and couldn’t believe that I was collaborating with Google! But it was real, and it was such a humbling adventure working with one of the world’s best innovative companies.
I’ve learned so much throughout the process – working with a brand like Google really allowed me to explore so much about myself as well as innovative technology. From VR to a really smart phone, life has become simpler through many things that their platform offers. Even exploring the Toronto office was an adventure in itself. The only thing I was thinking throughout every step of the way was, ‘Wow. This is happening?’.
They even gave myself, among other creators, the ability to simply create content as we pleased. It was a case of enabling our creative minds to go beyond the typical boundaries. The existing criteria served only as a blueprint to what we could do. Therefore, it was truly an amazing ride using tech to enhance my content while being constantly inspired. It was also a great experience getting to understand their products in further detail (which I’ll explain in further detail below), while having the ability to connect with amazing individuals from various creative industries. (Not to mention the Google team and the Media Profile team. I want to personally thank Zamour Johnson for reaching out to me and continuously providing me with support and guidance throughout the partnership, thanks man!)
My Google Pixel Experience Thus Far
Besides my appreciation for the journey, I want to share my personal experience with the phone. There are numerous things that this phone can do, but I’ll be focusing on the things that have really made a difference in my life.
I’ll start with my initial thoughts about the phone. Aesthetically speaking, it was simple and refined, in either the black or the white. My only criticism was the the empty space at the bottom of the phone, where many phones usually have their home button. I got over that pretty quickly when I realized that there was an ergonomic and user friendly fingerprint scanner on the back of the phone. It takes a little bit of time to get used to, but it’s really simple once it’s become a habit. I was excited to delve into the phone’s capabilities, as I’d heard a lot about how revolutionary they were. So here we go:
This one is pretty self-explanatory. DxOMark has rated the Pixel’s camera as the best smartphone camera on the market in 2016, and there really is no disputing that. I’ve used this phone’s camera numerous times as a substitute to a DSLR, when I didn’t have one on me. It takes vibrant pictures, and it’s even got a competing edge with night time shots. Recently, a lot of my photos on my social media platforms have been shot with my phone’s camera, which isn’t a huge surprise, but it’s allowed me to become more versatile. Truly amazing if you ask me.
Many people began raving about this feature when it first was announced. Well, what is it? It’s a virtual assistant that almost works like Siri from iOS, but smarter in my opinion. Your phone only recognizes your voice when you say ‘OK Google’, and prompts you to ask it any question. It’s become one of the most convenient things in my life, as it saves a lot of time and effort. It becomes extremely useful when you’re driving and you simply ask it to direct you somewhere – and that’s all it takes. It even amazes me that the assistant becomes more knowledgeable about you the longer you own the phone. As silly as it sounds, I don’t know if I can go back to using a smart phone without this feature.
This a fun accessory unique to the Pixel. The Live Case is a customizable protective case that can literally have anything on it. You can choose from one of your own photos or use a customizable location map or even existing artwork. What’s really cool is that the phone is able to detect the image on the case, and automatically display it as a wallpaper on the phone. Whaaaaaaat! Talk about standing out.
Daydream Virtual Reality
Virtual Reality is one of those things everyone wants to try nowadays, and it’s become very accessible through mobile devices that are capable. Google’s Daydream is very easy to use: simply strap in your phone and you’re good to go. It’s very immersive and a lot of fun. Kicking back and watching YouTube in VR is my new favorite lazy hobby, (other than reading of course.) There’s also a variety of apps and demos to try on VR that I haven’t even gotten to, so there’s a lot to explore here!
This. Is. Life. Saving. For real. Although my Google Pixel XL is the 32GB model, I no longer have to worry about storage space. With a Google device, you’re given unlimited cloud drive storage, which is amazing! It helps to clear up space on your device for other apps and uses, but I find that I do that much less now with the breathing room of unlimited storage. It goes such a long way if you’re someone who values photography or simply takes a lot of photos.
My experience has been unique to me (obviously), but I’ve really become more fond of my Pixel because of every step along the way. Being able to share my experience about my phone AND from my phone, is something that really amazes me. The Google Pixel is a great phone that has served me well so far, and I’m excited to continue using it as it’s simplified many aspects of my life.