Pixel 3 XL: Using the Top Shot Photo Feature

My new Pixel 3 XL arrived a couple of days ago and since then I have been geeking out getting to know it.

Since I got my original Pixel XL in November 2016, the feature I have used, and enjoyed, the most has been the camera. It is spectacular and taking pictures with the Pixel XL has been a revelation for this old engineer: I can actually take a decent picture….never knew I had that in me. I even published a book of landscape pictures.

From techy-nerd-geek to artist. Who knew. 🙂

pixel XL tracy tower at sunrise

Needless to say, I am R-E-A-L-L-Y looking forward to using my new Pixel 3 XL and, most of all, taking pictures with it for the next two years, that is, until the Pixel 5 XL comes out. 😉

With that in mind, here is what I found out about the Top Shot photo feature you see on TV. Oh wait….if you watch TV that is.

Halloween 2018 Photo Shoot with Blaze

Today is Halloween. After our morning walk, I grabbed two pumpkins and laid Blaze down between them to take a few pictures.

He always cooperates and we were nearly done when a woman walked by pushing a stroller. Blaze spotted her, then went from a pose to a standing bark in an instant.

“Oh, I’m so sorry for ruining your picture!” said the Woman.

After getting back to my study and looking at the pictures, I realized that some of them were MOVING.

I remembered the Top Shot commercial on TV and, in the 3 dot setting on the top right, I found, and chose, “Select shots” to go thru the video timeline of continuous motion to pick out the “best” shot of Blaze I could find (see the featured image above).

select shots

Below I selected a few video shots I went thru to find that one, true, Top Shot of Blaze.  Note: The original shot has the dot over the timeline cursor.

Pre-Shots (I saved a pre-shot for the featured image….before his lips started to get into bark mode)

preshot 1
preshot 2
preshot 3

Original Shot (when I actually snapped the picture)


Post Shots (after my original snap….glad he survived my “snap”….)

postshot 1
postshot 2
postshot 4
postshot 6


I will tell the woman with the stroller the next time she strolls by that she was the reason for the BEST picture! 🙂


I have my camera settings to motion automatic so the Pixel 3 XL actually made the decision to give me motion on only a few select shots. Not sure how they do this, but, it works well.

I will post more as I learn more about the Pixel 3 XL.

Oh yeah….I ordered the Pixel 3 XL direct from Google so I can participate in Beta testing new operating systems and other cool stuff. I am on AT&T, but, if the boss would approve it, I would love to try Project Fi. But no approval is in the offing because she gets a great deal for the two of us on AT&T.

Oh, well…..

Geek on!


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