Google Pixel phones get bedtime features and safety tools

The tech giant's latest "feature drop" focuses on safety, sleep and an adaptive battery to let you know how long it'll last.

Dara Kerr Former senior reporter
Dara Kerr was a senior reporter for CNET covering the on-demand economy and tech culture. She grew up in Colorado, went to school in New York City and can never remember how to pronounce gif.
Dara Kerr
2 min read

This is Google's third "feature drop" for its Pixel lineup.

Angela Lang/CNET

Google announced Monday that new features are coming to its Pixel phones. In its latest "feature drop," the tech giant said it's bringing fresh tools to Android devices that focus on safety and helping people get better sleep. Google is also bringing an adaptive battery to its Pixel lineup, which aims to better predict when the battery will run out and to reduce background activity.

Last December, the company kicked off "feature drops," which roll out every three months. Monday's announcement is its third "feature drop." Google's first drop included photo features and automatic call screening. The second round brought AR effects and more display features. 

In this third drop, Google's bedtime feature in Clock aims to help users create a consistent sleep schedule and to limit screen time. People can fall asleep to calming sounds and set an alarm to wake up to music. Google will also let users know how much time they're spending awake on which apps if they use their phone after bedtime.

Google adds new safety features to Pixel devices.


Google is also bringing its Personal Safety app to all Pixel devices (it used to only be on Pixel 4). And Pixel 3 will be getting car crash detection. The company is introducing new safety features too, such as a way to schedule a check-in from the app.

"For example if you're about to go on a run or hike alone, safety check will make sure you made it back safely," Tok Tokuda, technical program manager for Pixel, wrote in a blog post. "If you don't respond to the scheduled check-in, the app will alert your emergency contacts. In the event that you need immediate help or are in a dangerous situation, emergency sharing notifies all of your emergency contacts and shares your real-time location through Google Maps so they can send help or find you."

Google is also updating its Recorder app to let users start, stop and search voice recordings with Google Assistant. People can additionally save those transcripts to Google Docs. 

All of these new updates will rollout to all Pixel users over the next two weeks.

Watch this: Google Pixels could say goodbye to Qualcomm soon