You may have tuned into Google’s event expecting Nexus phones, but Google just threw a big wildcard into the mix: Meet the Pixel C. The big surprise at Google announcement was the Pixel C, an Android tablet developed by the team behind the Pixel Chromebooks. The Pixel C doesn’t run Chrome OS, it’s a 10.2-inch Android tablet with a removable keyboard.
While it doesn’t run Chrome OS, Pixel C does inherit the design and build quality of the Pixel line. It’s an all-aluminum silver laptop with a minimal squared-off design. The back of the device has the traditional Googlely-colored Pixel logo, which is a straight line with red, green, blue, and yellow segments. The line is actually a light, and tapping the back display the remaining battery power by lighting up part of the logo.
Google has opted for an Nvidia Tegra X1 processor and a powerful graphics card to go with it. So in terms of raw power, there should be enough here to do what you need.
The big show is the keyboard, which Google is rather proud of. And in some ways, Google deserves to be proud. It’s a Bluetooth keyboard, but it’s perfectly sized to the Pixel tablet and has the same high-quality metal shell. It snaps on with a magnet on a hinge that you can rotate up to a 135-degree angle. It’s a firm connection, and the tablet immediately recognizes when it’s connected and hides the software keyboard.
The other clever thing is how it charges: inductively, off the tablet itself. A charge should be good to last two months, so as long as you close the thing up with the tablet from time to time you should never have to think about it.
Google is shy about saying just when and where the Pixel C will be available, other than that it should arrive in time for the holidays. However, the pricing is about what you’d expect for a slate in this class: it’ll cost $499 for a version with 32GB of storage, and $599 for a 64GB version with another $149 for the keyboard.