Google Pixel 9 tipped for an AI boost with some genuinely useful new features

Google AI should shift things up a gear with the Pixel 9

Google Pixel 9 render
(Image credit: Onleaks / 91Mobiles)
Quick Summary

Google is revamping its AI features on Pixel phones under the banner Google AI.

New features include Add Me which adds missing people to group photos, Screenshots which uses AI to organise information from grabs, and Studio which could allow for creative photo editing using AI.

Google has been one of the biggest drivers in consumer AI. For many years the company has been talking about DeepMind, large language models and more recently about Gemini as it moves to fill Google Assistant's shoes.

In addition, Google has talked openly about AI applications in its best Android phones – especially around the camera and photography – and it seems that the company is preparing to rebrand and expand the offering.

According to information coming from a source within Google, Android Authority reports that the AI features in your phone are going to be bundled up under one banner – Google AI. It looks like Samsung's branding with Galaxy AI has struck a chord with Google, leading to this new umbrella term.

It's not just a rebranding exercise, because we also learn that there are new features coming, aligned with the launch of the Pixel 9 devices which has been set for 13 August.

Under the Google AI naming, you'll find Gemini and Circle to Search, which will already be familiar to users, alongside new features including Add Me, Screenshots and Studio.

Add Me is said to be an extension of the functions offered by Best Take in the Pixel camera. Best Take will allow you to take a sequence of photos of a group of people and then create a super photo where everyone is looking their best, because you have access to all the faces in all the photos. It's a little creepy, but works well.

Add Me wants to solve that problem of what happens when someone isn't in the photo. That's common when you have a group of people, but someone is taking the actual picture. In this instance, you can swap photographers and then Add Me will be able to include that missing person into the group photo.

The next feature, Screenshots, is designed to make finding information easier. The main reason people take screenshots is so they can save something – a booking reference, restaurant details or something else that they will refer to later. Screenshots will use AI to better organise that information so it can be easily recalled and used.

That means you'll be able to ask Gemini on your phone for that information and you'll find it neatly summarised.

Studio is described as "You imagine it. Pixel creates it", which sounds like a generative AI experience, a bit like Apple's Image Playground. That's also one of the big missing elements of AI on Pixel devices. While it will use generative AI in photo editing, it won't actually create images from scratch.

We know that Google does have plans for image and video creation via AI and Studio could be the start of that experience, allowing a little more off-the-cuff creativity whenever and wherever you are.

The Google Pixel 9 has been leaked fairly extensively and as we're learning, it's not only going to have a new design, but will be super-charged with Google AI skills too.

Chris Hall

Chris has been writing about consumer tech for over 15 years. Formerly the Editor-in-Chief of Pocket-lint, he's covered just about every product launched, witnessed the birth of Android, the evolution of 5G, and the drive towards electric cars. You name it and Chris has written about it, driven it or reviewed it. Now working as a freelance technology expert, Chris' experience sees him covering all aspects of smartphones, smart homes and anything else connected. Chris has been published in titles as diverse as Computer Active and Autocar, and regularly appears on BBC News, BBC Radio, Sky, Monocle and Times Radio. He was once even on The Apprentice... but we don't talk about that.