Today, Google sent out a press release detailing their new SoC called Pixel Visual Core. Surprisingly, the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL include this new SoC for image processing, but it isn’t enabled just yet. Google announced that this would be available to be enabled in the developer options once the Android 8.1 is released, which is a few weeks away.
The good news is that the Android 8.1 update will come in the form of a Developer Preview. That means that it will be available for the Google Pixel, Pixel XL, Pixel 2, and Pixel 2 XL. Aside from enabling Pixel Visual Core on the new Pixels, we don’t know what is coming to the original Pixels.
One of the things we know that is coming to the original Pixel and Pixel XL in the Android 8.1 is the new Pixel 2 Launcher. If you don’t want to wait for the Android 8.1 Developer Preview, you can get the Pixel 2 Launcher on any device thanks to an extracted APK. It is unknown if Google Lens or Music Recognition will come to the current Pixels in the update, but it’s possible.
Once the Developer Preview is live, you will be able to enroll in it by going to android.com/beta. If you are already enrolled in the beta program, you will still likely have to re-enroll your device for the new Developer Preview.