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5 hidden Pixel features for smarter calling

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Pixel phones are filled with efficiency-enhancing Google intelligence, and one area that’s all too easy to overlook is the way the devices can improve the act of actually talking on your cellular telephone.

Talking on your phone, you say? What is this, 1987?! Believe me, I get it, Vanilli. We’re all perpetually busy creatures these days, and the timeless art of speaking to another human on your mobile device can seem both archaic and annoying.

But hear me out: Here in the real world, placing or accepting (or maybe even just avoiding) a good old-fashioned phone call is occasionally inescapable. That’s especially true in the world of business, but it’s also apparent in other areas of life — from dialing up a restaurant to confirm your carnitas are ready to dodging your Uncle Ned’s quarterly regards-sending check-ins. (No offense, Ned. I never dodge your calls. Really. Send my regards to Aunt Agnes.)

Whatever the case may be, your trusty Pixel can make the process of dealing with a call easier, more efficient, and infinitely less annoying. So in honor of my new Pixel Academy e-course — a totally free seven-day email adventure that helps you uncover tons of next-level Pixel treasures — I wanted to share some of my favorite hidden Pixel calling possibilities. Check ’em out, try ’em out, and then come sign up for the course for even more super-practical Pixel awesomeness.

Pixel calling trick No. 1: The fast finder

We’ll start with some time-saving tricks specific to the act of placing a call — ’cause if you’re already dialing some digits and preparing to (gasp!) speak to another human, the last thing you want to do is make the process any more painful than it has to be.

One common calling annoyance is the need to find the number of a business you’re planning to ring for one reason or another — a medieval-feeling hassle that typically requires you to search for the business in one app, then either copy its number or follow a link to bring it over into your Phone app for the actual call.

Well, stop wasting your seconds with that silliness, you silly ol’ sea cucumber — and instead, just search for the business you want from right within the Phone app on your Pixel phone.

You might not ever realize it, but your Pixel Phone app is standing by and waiting to act as your personal virtual phonebook. All you’ve gotta do is type in the name of any business near you, and the app will automatically pop up relevant results in your area. From there, placing a call is just one more tap away. (If for some reason results don’t show up right away for you, tap the three-dot menu icon in the Phone app’s upper-right corner, select “Settings,” then select “Nearby places” and make sure the toggles in that area are on and active.)

Copyright © 2021 IDG Communications, Inc.

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