Daily Authority: 📱 Key Pixel 7 questions answered

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Google Pixel 7 Lemongrass 1

Rita El Khoury / Android Authority

☀️ Hey there! We gave our cat some fish as a treat a couple of times and she seems to love it. The only problem is that she now seems to take umbrage with her usual pureed treats. She used to attack her old treats and now she stares at it for 30 seconds before sauntering over to her bowl.

The Pixel 7 embargo lifts

Google Pixel 7 Pro camera housing

Rita El Khoury / Android Authority

Google lifted the embargo on Pixel 7 series reviews and more detailed impressions yesterday, allowing us to delve deeper into these phones and figure out if they were worth buying. We’ve got plenty of coverage to chew through.

Is it great for photos?

  • Of course, people tend to buy Pixels for the camera quality, so what can the Pixel 7 series do?
  • AA features editor Rita El-Khoury took a ton of snaps on the Pixel 7 Pro and gave us this monster article highlighting 200+ photos.
  • This article shows off a bunch of scenarios, such as HDR, ultrawide shots, macro images, snaps across a variety of zoom factors, Night Sight, and more.
  • We don’t have an official verdict in this article, but the photos do speak for themselves.
  • AA reviewer Dhruv Bhutani also put the Pixel 7 zoom to the test, declaring that the phone delivers great results between 2x and 5x.
  • Dhruv adds that the phone also delivers 10x shots that hold up “extremely well” by smartphone standards.
  • However, he reckons that 15x is about as far as you want to go in good lighting and that 30x is a no-go for decent snaps.

Is the Tensor G2 a big upgrade?

  • We posted a Tensor G2 benchmark article, and testing shows that the Pixel 7’s chipset is a mild upgrade at most.
  • The chipset sees a nice multi-core CPU performance bump, but virtually no change to single-core performance.
  • GPU benchmarks also show a slight regression over the original Tensor. GPU stress tests are another story, though.
  • The Tensor G2 bests the Pixel 6 chip in stress testing and can even beat some Snapdragon phones like the S22 Ultra and Xperia 1 IV.
  • It won’t be the most cutting-edge chipset on the market, then. But Google is eyeing sustained performance rather than peak figures.
  • AA colleague Rob Triggs also asserts that the Pixel 7 shows raw specs aren’t all that anymore.

Is the fingerprint scanner better?

  • We also put the Pixel 7’s fingerprint scanner through its paces. After all, the Pixel 6 series was roundly criticized for its scanner at launch.
  • Fortunately, our testing shows that the new phone’s scanner was significantly faster than the old phone.
  • But we also thought that the two handsets were both accurate, showing that Google has indeed addressed this on the old phone.
  • “If you need to return the Pixel 7, it probably wouldn’t be due to the fingerprint scanner,” we added.

As for our overall verdicts? We’re still taking the time to properly test the devices before we publish our reviews. But expect our Pixel 7 Pro review to go live later today if all goes to plan.

Thursday Thing

brain cells pong cortical labs BBC

We’ve previously heard of animals playing video games, but what about lab-grown brain cells? Yep, researchers from Cortical Labs grew a so-called mini-brain in a lab and connected it to Pong, the BBC reported.

The mini-brain consisted of over 800,000 human brain cells grown from stem cells and some mouse embryos. The cells were then connected via electrodes to the game, showing where the ball was and how far it was from a paddle.

The result? Well, the researchers said the mini-brain learned how to play in five minutes. It missed the ball often, but the team says its success rate was still above random chance. The team also pointed out that the mini-brain didn’t actually know it was playing pong, owing to its lack of consciousness.