Tuesday, June 18, 2024
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Google Pixel 8, Pixel 8a Get Android AICore Update Ahead of Gemini Nano Rollout: Report

Google Pixel 8 and Pixel 8a are expected to gain support for on-device generative AI (GenAI) capabilities using Gemini Nano, and the company has reportedly rolled out an update to a system component that allows the functionality to be manually enabled. Gemini Nano is currently supported on a few smartphones, including the company’s flagship Pixel 8 Pro and the Samsung Galaxy S24 series that was unveiled earlier this year. Google has already confirmed that the Pixel 8 and Pixel 8a will also offer Gemini Nano support for on-device GenAI features.

Google Pixel 8, Pixel 8a Get AICore Update With Hidden Toggle

In a teardown of the latest AICore APK for the Pixel 8 and Pixel 8a, Android Authority spotted two toggles that are expected to appear in the developer options menu. The first option, Enable AICore Persistent, will dedicate a portion of the device’s memory so that it can run persistently.

Meanwhile, the Enable on-device GenAI Features toggle will let users enable or disable GenAI features on their smartphone. The description for the toggle states that this will control AI features that are powered by AICore and use Google’s Gemini AI model.

AICore Toggles on Pixel 8, Pixel 8a Could Be Disabled by Default

According to the publication, Gemini Nano on the Pixel 8 and Pixel 8a might need to be enabled via the developer options menu. While Google could announce these features via a Pixel Feature Drop, it is currently unclear whether the newly discovered toggles will be moved to another part of the Settings app.

The teardown also reveals the locations of these settings on Pixel smartphones, once they are activated. After opening the Settings app on these handsets, users would need to navigate to Developer Options > AICore Settings and enable both Enable on-device GenAI Features and Enable AICore Persistent toggles.

On the other hand, enabling the toggles on the Pixel 8 and Pixel 8a should enable some (if not all) Gemini Nano-powered features such as Write for Me, Summarise in Pixel Recorder, and Smart Reply for Gboard. The new toggles spotted on the Pixel 8 and Pixel 8a suggests that Pixel 8 series (including Pixel 8 Pro) owners should also be able to toggle these features off, if they don’t want AI features on their smartphone.


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