There’s no denying that Google has always focused on elevating the photography experience on Pixel phones. With the launch of the Pixel 8 and 8 Pro, the tech giant has taken a groundbreaking step to redefine how you take photos using AI. There are a bunch of different features that have arrived with the Pixel 8 series, but the Best Take feature is indeed revolutionary, to say the least.
There’s a lot to this feature than meets the eye, and it will drastically change the way you capture everyday moments with your phone. It did for me, at least in the three days that I’ve spent with the Pixel 8 Pro. So, let’s learn how to use Best Take on Pixel 8 and 8 Pro, along with my impressions of this feature.
What is the ‘Best Take’ Feature on Pixel 8/8 Pro?
How many times have you had to take way too many photos with your friends for each one of you to be satisfied with the final shot? Even if you do settle on a photo, there are instances where not everyone is satisfied with the desired result. However, that will no longer be the case with the brand-new Best Take feature in Google Photos. Sadly, it is exclusive to the Pixel 8 and Pixel 8 Pro for now.
Using AI, the Best Take feature basically analyzes similar shots and provides you with a compilation of facial expressions from each of these photos. For example, you are trying to take a group photo or a selfie with one of your friends. Right when you hit the shutter button, either someone is looking the other way or blinking. That ruins the photo, and you gotta try again!
But, with the Best Take feature in the Google Photos app, you can take multiple shots and later on, use the feature to select the best possible facial expression for every person in a shot. This immediately ensures that you get the best shot from multiple shots without having to get it right each time.
The best thing? This feature doesn’t just work with group selfies..or groupfies (are we still calling it that, or has Gen Z coined a new word?). You can use it for selfies too. However, since it is normally the group selfies that are trickier to nail, you will end up using this feature more on those shots.
How to Use the Best Take Feature on Pixel 8 Pro
Something that I really liked about the Best Take feature is how easy it is to use. You don’t have to be adept at photo editing to use it. Just a couple of taps, and the AI does it all for you. With that being said, here’s how you use the Best Take feature on the Pixel 8 and 8 Pro:
1. First things first, capture multiple group selfies or your own selfies.
Note: If you have turned Google Photos Backup on, the photos you capture should automatically get uploaded to your Google Photos account. If it’s not turned on, you can head to Google Photos Settings and manually toggle on the backup feature.
2. Then, head to the Google Photos app on either of the Pixel 8 series phones.
3. Now, tap on any one photo from the multiple shots you took.
4. Next, tap on Edit and swipe on the bottom panel in Google Photos.
5. Here, go to the “Tools” tab to find the Best Take feature. Tap on it and the AI will start looking for similar shots.
6. Once it’s done analyzing, it will present the different facial expressions for you to select in a panel.
7. Tap on these faces to see all the expressions from the various shots compiled. Select the one that you like, and it should instantly replace the current facial expressions and angles in your photo.
8. And that’s it; the changes have been made to your photo. However, you can also “Save a Copy” of the edited image.
Here’s a quick before and after photo created using the Best Take feature in Google Photos on Pixel 8 and 8 Pro:
Note: The Best Take feature does not work on a system level. It can only be used if the shots that you are capturing are backed up and stored on Google Photos.
Is Google Pixel 8’s Best Take Worth the Hype?
I’m not going to lie, Best Take is one of the coolest photo editing features added to a smartphone in recent years. However, it is not really something new. Yeah, you heard that right. Remember the time when Nokia Lumias pretty much captured the entire smartphone market with their flagship cameras? If you ask me, Lumia phones were great (minus the Windows Store) and way ahead of their time.
Almost a decade ago, with the Nokia Lumia 925 and 1020, they released something very similar to what the Google Pixel 8 series is doing right now. Moreover, it worked great. Popular tech enthusiast @sondesix took to X (formerly Twitter) to reveal this piece of information, and it instantly gave me a flashback.
I remember how popular these camera features were. They took the tech world by storm back in the day, which is why everyone wanted to own a Nokia Lumia back then. Now? Your Lumia is probably dead, gathering dust in a drawer somewhere. The point is, that Google has been known to kill products. I mean, there’s a website (visit) dedicated to everything that Google has killed. That is exactly why I couldn’t help but frown when I heard that the Google Pixel 8 and 8 Pro were getting a whopping 7 years of software support. Will Google even be able to stick to its promise?
The Best Take feature is, hands down, a super cool camera feature that will save all of us the hassle of finding the right photo. Why do so when you can literally make one in a matter of seconds? My experience with Google Photos’ Best Take feature was pretty good, and it did take me aback. The kind of accuracy I got to see with the feature had me questioning everything. Will Skynet be a reality pretty soon? It’s just that good a feature, and you can’t tell that the facial expressions on a photo have been swapped with another. Who even needs Adobe Photoshop anymore?
However, it all boils down to if and how much you are planning on using these AI features. By the end of the day, Pixel phones have never been about performance. Instead, they have always been about peak Android experience and unbeatable cameras. If that’s what you want, there’s nothing quite like it in the smartphone market right now. With these phones, you just need to take a leap of faith. With that being said, let me know in the comments if the latest Google Pixel 8 series and its AI photo editing features are fascinating to you.