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Google Pixel XL Review - Battery life and verdict Review

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Google Pixel XL – Battery Life

Battery life on the Pixel XL is fantastic, and screen aside, it’s one of the few things that sets it apart from the smaller model. Tucked inside is a non-removable 3,450mAh cell – 50mAh smaller than the Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge – and it can easily make it through the day and into the next without any issues.

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I typically unplug at 7am, have multiple email accounts constantly dragging in messages and multiple Slack, Twitter and Facebook accounts all constantly on the lookout. An hour of Spotify streaming on the way to work used only  5%, while an hour of HD streaming from Netflix used up between 8-9%. Graphics-intensive games – I was using Modern Combat and Real Racing – eat through about 13-15% per hour, with lesser demanding titles (Dots, Alto’s Adventure, and so on) using about half of that.

Those numbers are hardly a revelation, but they aren’t the reason the battery impresses. It’s how it consumes power when you’re not using it, or only conducting basic tasks. Standby times are fantastic; leave the phone overnight and it will barely use any power.

It also charges exceptionally quickly, only lagging behind the OnePlus 3 when it comes to charge times in relation to the size. A full charge from 0% takes about 1hr 20mins; I managed to go from 20% to 90% in only 35 minutes.

It’s Quick Charge 3.0-compatible and, like the Nexus 6P, uses USB Type-C instead of micro-USB. Google has also included two USB Type-C cables in the box: A USB Type-C to USB Type-C that plugs into the wall adapter, plus a USB Type-C to full-size USB for plugging into your computer.

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Should I buy the Pixel XL?

Look past the slightly mundane design, and you’ll find yourself a complete phone that more than justifies its lofty price tag. Yes, it is possible to get a great Android phone without spending £600+, but in the Pixel XL you have the very best of what’s on offer.

Google taking full control of this phone is a revelation, and it should really make other Android OEMs worried. The optimisation here is fantastic; it’s the fastest Android phone in general use, and the battery lasts longer than similarly sized cells.

It isn’t perfect, though: a lack of water-resistance and a microSD stand out when you’re comparing it to other similarly prices phones.

Buy Now: Google Pixel XL on EE (5GB) – £0 upfront, £47.99/month

Verdict

A true iPhone and Samsung Galaxy S7 rival featuring the best version of Android yet – and a camera that’s sure to get you excited about snapping away with your handset.

We test every mobile phone we review thoroughly. We use industry standard tests to compare features properly and we use the phone as our main device over the review period. We’ll always tell you what we find and we never, ever, accept money to review a product.

Find out more about how we test in our ethics policy.

Used as our main phone for the review period

Reviewed using respected industry benchmarks and real world testing

Always has a SIM card installed

Tested with phone calls, games and popular apps

Trusted Score

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Score in detail

  • Performance 10
  • Camera 9
  • Design 7
  • Battery Life 9
  • Value 7
  • Software 10
  • Calls & Sound 7
  • Screen Quality 9

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