One of the main highlights of the newly (and officially) announced Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL are their cameras. And so it’s not a surprise that they are introducing a lot of camera-focused features in order to further highlight that this is their best mobile camera smartphones so far. Two major announcements regarding this is the introduction, or rather, re-introduction of the AR Stickers that are now known as Playground and the further enhancement and improvement of the built-in Google Lens.
Aside from the name change, the Playground has also now been redesigned to make it easier for you to add AR stickers to your selfies or your photos. You can now choose the various characters to add as AR stickers just on top of the capture button. You can also see a button to the left of the shutter where you can see all the available stickers organized by tabs. The button on the right meanwhile lets you add speech bubbles to your photo.
If you don’t know which stickers to use, they use AI to suggest what will best suit your photo or video, depending on what you’re doing, whether you’re walking your dog, cooking in the kitchen, etc. You also get four new sticker packs to choose from: Weather, Pets, Sports, and Signs. You can also add Playmoji characters which will react to you and to each other. Basically, Playground is a lot similar to Snapchat, down to the more transparent UI.
As for Google Lens, they’re making it more integrated into the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL. Lens Suggestions will now bring common actions like calling a number, visiting a URL, scanning a QR code, directly in the Pixel camera. Just point your camera at the object tap it and the consequent action will happen. It even uses Pixel Visual Core so some actions will work even without Internet connection,
You can also now access Google Lens easier by long pressing your camera. You can also open it from the recent apps screen. Just drag up the home button from wherever you are and then long press on an image. This enhanced Lens will be available on all Pixel devices while Playground will be on Pixel 3 first but will eventually come to the two earlier ones.