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Pixel 4’s First Feature Drop Lands With Improved Face Unlock, More

Posted December 23, 2019 | Android | Google | Mobile | Pixel | Pixel 4 | Windows


Earlier this month, Google announced a new kind of updates for Pixel devices that will improve the Pixel handsets over time. Dubbed “feature drops”, the new updates are essentially similar to monthly patches that introduce new features to improve the experience for Pixel owners.

As promised, Google has started delivering the first feature drop for the Pixel 4 over the weekend. The company’s first feature drop for the Pixel 4 includes the promised features, but it also includes some new functionalities Google didn’t actually talk about in any of the official announcements.

The first major feature is an improved to Face Unlock. With the new feature, Face Unlock gets better over time by automatically improving your face models. The idea here is that Face Unlock will occasionally use your recent face unlock images to improve its existing face models, so it has a better idea of your facial features and can offer a better experience in the future. As XDA Developers notes, the images are all locally stored on your device, so they never actually go to Google’s cloud.

The new update also introduces support for T-Mobile eSIM, as reported by Android Police. This means you can now have a physical nanoSIM and an eSIM on your phone while being able to receive calls and texts from both.

There’s another minor update on the Pixel 4 that enables dual-frequency GNSS which allows the device to track two different satellite frequencies at once, allowing for more accurate location tracking. This likely has to do something with “better location quality in Google Maps” feature that Google already announced earlier in the month.

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