Photo by Vjeran Pavic / The Verg
The November 2019 update for Google’s Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL might smooth out one the biggest wrinkles from its launch a few weeks ago. Per 9to5Google, the release notes for the new update listed on Google’s Pixel Update Bulletin mentions that improvements have been made to the Smooth Display feature. While it doesn’t go into detail as to what has changed, presumably (and hopefully), it has implemented some changes to prevent the Pixel 4 from automatically dipping below a 90Hz refresh rate, or at least it has limited the conditions in which that happens.
When this issue surfaced, Google provided a statement to The Verge in which it said that it will override the Smooth Display setting to adjust refresh rate under certain circumstances, including “when the user turns on battery saver, certain content such as video (as it’s largely shot at 24 or 30fps), and even various brightness or ambient conditions.” It promised a software update that will let Smooth Display remain switched on in “more brightness conditions,” and this November, a patch could be the fulfillment of that promise. Fingers crossed that December’s update will make some progress on improving the Pixel 4’s troubling battery life.
This update also brings improvements to the Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL’s cameras, though, again, there aren’t any particulars to parse from the info provided. If you can’t wait for this update to hit, you can just flash it to your phone, but it will likely arrive over-the-air relatively soon.