What Are Pixel Feature Drops and When Is the Next One Available?

Google’s Feature Drops bring exciting updates to Pixel devices four times a year. Here’s what you need to know about them, and when you can get them.

If you value fast and frequent software updates, there’s no better phone to get than a Google Pixel. Google leads the pack in this regard because it owns the software. Besides fast and regular updates, Google also has the so-called Pixel Feature Drops that make its Pixel lineup interesting. Here’s everything you need to know about Google’s Pixel Feature Drops.

What Is a Pixel Feature Drop?

Pixel Feature Drops are an initiative by Google where the company launches a bunch of new features on its smartphone lineup in one update. Feature Drops come in addition to the monthly software fixes and improvements and the major Android updates. But, unlike the regular software fixes, Pixel Feature drops are solely meant to add new functionality to Pixel phones.

Google launched the Pixel Feature Drop initiative in December 2019, promising a quarterly update schedule. Since its launch, the company has released several Feature Drops. In March 2022, Google released its tenth Pixel Feature Drop.

Feature Drops are not exclusive to Google smartphones, though. Google has confirmed that its Pixel Bud series will also receive Pixel Feature Drops. As expected, the Pixel Watch is also eligible for Feature Drops.

What Do You Get With a Pixel Feature Drop?

Google has added various new features to the Pixel series via Feature Drops. For instance, Google’s March 2022 Pixel Feature Drop added Night Sight mode in Snapchat, allowing users to capture better shots in low-light conditions inside the social media app. The update also added custom Gboard stickers, Interpreter Mode, and Live Captions for calls.

Besides these additions, other features availed on Pixel phones via a Feature Drop include the ability to create Locked Folders in Google Photos, Conversation Mode in the Sound Amplifier app, Bass boost control on Pixel Buds-A series, digital car key support exclusive to Pixel 6 series, and more.

When Is the Next Pixel Feature Drop Available?

As specified above, Google maintains a quarterly rollout schedule for Pixel Feature Drops. They’re usually launched mid-month in these months:

  • March
  • June
  • September
  • December

If you want to test out the changes early, you can join the Android Beta Program, where you’ll be able to install Quarterly Platform Release (QPR) betas in the months before they launch as the full Feature Drops.

Update Your Pixel Device to Enjoy New Features

To enjoy the latest features from Google, you must ensure that your device’s software is always up-to-date. You can check for updates by opening the Settings app and going to System > System update and tapping Check for update.

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