Google is purposefully crippling the Pixel 4’s brightness to save lots of battery life

Is anybody feeling deja vu? It appears yearly, Google makes puzzling selections with its Pixel shows. The Pixel 2 XL was criticized for terrible shade calibration, the Pixel three XL for its absurd notch, the Pixel Four for by no means sticking to the claimed 90Hz refresh charge. However there’s one other drawback with Google‘s newest: it’s display isn’t all that shiny. Worse, it appears Google is purposefully limiting the panel’s brightness, even in excessive ambient gentle.

As famous by Mishaal Rahman over at XDA, there’s a excessive brightness mode hidden within the Pixel 4‘s code. By default, the telephone is restricted tops out at about 444 nits. That’s okay, nevertheless it pales compared to one thing just like the Galaxy Observe 10+’s 1,308 nit peak brightness. It’s effective for many circumstances however could make the telephone exhausting to see in direct daylight, particularly when attempting to look at movies or view images. It’s one thing many reviewers have famous, and the numbers bear out.

When de-limited, the Pixel Four can attain about 610 nits. Nonetheless not as shiny because the competitors, however a  substantial enhance. Given the code, it appears Google thought of implementing a excessive brightness mode that will activate through the appropriate ambient circumstances – as seen on different units – however for no matter purpose opted in opposition to it. There’s just one different time it seems the show will attain its most brightness, and that’s when watching HDR video.

The choice to restrict brightness was presumably one to save lots of battery; the Pixel Four and Pixel Four XL’s batteries are notably smaller than comparable Android units. Nonetheless, it’s a puzzling selection. For one, it may very well be left as an non-compulsory toggle for customers to benefit from when wanted.

For one more… nicely, the telephones ought to simply have larger batteries. It’s 2019. Even Apple, which has at all times gotten away with tiny batteries because of its extremely optimized walled backyard, has larger batteries on each iPhone 11 Execs.

In the event you’ve acquired the technical know-how and have rooted your Pixel 4, all you want is to enter a few shell instructions. As soon as activated, the brightness mode solely kicks in should you’ve turned the brightness slider all the way in which up. It’ll impact your battery in excessive ambient gentle, however your telephone ought to in any other case carry out a lot the identical in any other case.

Sadly, the actual fact you want root entry makes this an impractical repair for many customers. A minimum of with the 90Hz problem, you may simply power it to stay on the greater refresh charge within the telephone’s developer settings. However who is aware of, perhaps if we complain loudly sufficient, Google will hear.

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Revealed November 8, 2019 — 21:21 UTC

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