Google releases big Pixel feature drop update with lots of improvements

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Today’s the start of a new month and Google is going big for Pixel owners by releasing a software update with lots of new features and improvements.

Getting better sleep is a big focus of this month’s Pixel feature drop update. Google is adding a new Bedtime tab to its Clock app that’ll let you set a regular bedtime and wake-up schedule, which can help improve your quality of sleep if you follow it. The app will show you a preview of tomorrow’s calendar and tell you how much sleep you’ll get, and you can adjust your bedtime accordingly if you’d like.

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Once you’ve set up your bedtime, the Clock app will send you a reminder shortly before and give you an option to play calming sounds from apps like Calm, Spotify, and YouTube Music. You can also pair these Bedtime features with Digital Wellbeing to limit interruptions and, if you stay up past your bedtime, see which apps were keeping you up.

Google wants to help you wake up better, too. The Sunrise Alarm feature will show a visual cue as your wake-up time is approaching to help you get up more gently.

These new features are rolling out to Pixel devices today, and all other Android devices will be able to get ’em in the Clock app later this summer.

Also improving in this month’s new update is Google’s Personal Safety app. The new safety check feature will let you set a scheduled check-in before you do something like go on a walk or hike alone. After the amount of time you set expires, the app will ask for a safety check to make sure you’re ok.

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If you don’t respond to it, the app will alert your emergency contacts. If you need immediate help, you can have the app notify your emergency contacts and share your real-time location with Google Maps so they or someone else can come help you.

The Personal Safety app was previously only available on the Pixel 4, but it’s now rolling out to all Pixel devices. Plus, the app’s car crash detection feature will be coming to the Pixel 3 after originally only being offered on the Pixel 4.

Google’s Recorder app makes it easy for you to record voice and view the transcriptions, and with this new update, you can use Google Assistant to start and stop recordings plus search past recordings. Just say something like “Hey Google, start recording my meeting.” The update also enables you to save a transcript to Google Docs for easy sharing.

This new update is making Google’s Adaptive Battery feature better, too. On the Pixel 2 and newer, Adaptive Battery can predict when your battery will die and futher reduce background activity to keep your phone running even longer.

Rounding out this new Google Pixel update are some security patches and functional improvements. For example, Google says there’s a fix for a bug that’d cause the network indicator to go missing on the lock screen of Pixel phones as well as a fix for an issue where the Now Playing text would get cut off on the always-on display. You can see a full list of these improvements below.

This new update is starting to roll out today, but Google says it’s going out in phases and so timing will vary depending on carrier and device. Owners of the Pixel 2 and 2 XL as well as the Pixel 3 and 3 XL on T-Mobile will begin receiving update notifications on June 4.

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Sources: Google (1), (2), Pixel Phone Help forums

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  • Android_God

    We have to wait a few months for the sleep feature in the clock? Oh gosh Google, I’m sorry the rest of us aren’t worthy of such a revolutionary feature!
    A$$holes

  • dcmanryan

    How did we ever survive without our phones running every aspect of our life? I personally eat until I’m tired and sleep until I’m hungry. Not to mention these cool new clock things that tell time some people go off.

  • Andrew

    The pixel is so underrated