The Now Playing feature on the Pixel 2 uses machine learning to recognize when music is playing and display the song and artist names on your lock screen, so that you no longer need to scramble to find the name of that song. The key is a miniaturized neural network that runs on a tiny chip in the Pixel 2. This system is trained to recognize the audio fingerprint of over 70,000 songs, and it’s updated weekly with the latest from Google Play Music. Most importantly, this audio recognition happens on the device — so that when a song comes on, your phone can compare just a few seconds of music to its internal database and quickly recall the information without sending information to the cloud. This means that Now Playing works fast, is private to you and keeps power consumption to a minimum.
Now Playing is a complex feature made simple by bringing the right hardware, software, and AI together in a single product. And that’s an approach that teams across Google are using to create smarter features, more helpful products, and entirely new paradigms for technology. It’s a unique moment where the combination of AI, software, and hardware can help us design more helpful and delightful experiences for users.