Google Pixel 8 Pro just got a big AI upgrade with Gemini Nano — here's what you can do now

Google Pixel 8 Pro held in hand.
(Image credit: Future)

The Google Pixel 8 Pro is the first phone to get Google Gemini built-in, making an AI powerhouse of a phone even more capable.

Specifically, the Pixel 8 Pro's getting Gemini Nano, the lightweight version of Google's newly announced Gemini AI model. This version can run completely on-device without an internet connection for convenient and secure use, unlike the two more muscular Pro and Ultra versions.

Currently exclusive to Google's latest and greatest smartphone, Gemini Nano will initially supercharge two of the Pixel 8 Pro's signature features — the Summarize function in the Recorder app and Gboard's Smart Reply.

Google Gemini on Pixel 8 Pro summarize feature

(Image credit: Google)

Summarize lets you condense the key points of what you've captured in the Recorder app into a simpler, more readable form. As for Gboard, the enhanced version of Smart Reply will now suggest whole sentences in your autocomplete bar based on messages you've been sent. However, this is only available as a developer preview, meaning you'll need to turn it on in the Settings app first. Also, you can also only try it in WhatsApp right now, although more apps will be supported in the new year according to Google.

Google Gemini running on Google Pixel 8 Pro summarize feature

(Image credit: Google)

Gemini Pro and Ultra are coming to Google Bard early next year, and apparently will be usable via Google Assistant. These will require an internet connection unlike the Gemini Nano features, but Assistant with Bard sounds like another future Pixel update to look forward to.

More Pixel upgrades to check out

Google Pixel Fold dual-screen preview for camera

(Image credit: Google)

Google announced more AI enhancements on the way for Pixel phones in the form of a December Feature Drop. Among these are a new Video Boost feature for improving Pixel 8 Pro clips by uploading them to the cloud for enhancement, a Night Sight timelapse mode for the Pixel 8 and Pixel 8 Pro, a Dual Screen preview for the Pixel Fold that lets you show your camera viewfinder on the cover screen, and several other updates we've covered separately.

We've not tried out Gemini Nano on the Pixel 8 Pro yet, but considering how much we liked the phone's AI abilities at launch, we're hoping that we'll be impressed yet again as Google adds more abilities to Gemini and offers it on more devices. Although with the Samsung Galaxy S24 tipped to be all-in on AI as well, Google may be getting some stiff competition in this area very soon.

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Richard Priday
Assistant Phones Editor

Richard is based in London, covering news, reviews and how-tos for phones, tablets, gaming, and whatever else people need advice on. Following on from his MA in Magazine Journalism at the University of Sheffield, he's also written for WIRED U.K., The Register and Creative Bloq. When not at work, he's likely thinking about how to brew the perfect cup of specialty coffee.