Google has been designing and building premium Android smartphones for many years, co-branding with various hardware partners since back in the days of the company's Nexus devices. More recently with its first generation Pixel series, the Mountain View team has taken more prominent ownership of the brand, with devices specifically underscored as "Made By Google." And indeed the design signatures of the first generation Pixel and Pixel XL were distinctly different from any other handset on the market, as are the latest Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL that Google is launching today, along with a redesigned Daydream View VR headset.
Designed by Google but manufactured by HTC (Pixel 2) and LG (Pixel 2 XL), these two new handsets also boast Google's latest Android 8.0 operating system, aka Oreo, an exclusive to Google Pixel and certain Nexus devices, at least for now. In some ways, this is also a big advantage as you'll note on the pages ahead...