Google Pixel 2 Playing Feature

Google Pixel 2
How to get the Google Pixel 2 ‘now playing’ feature on any Android?

What is Google Pixel 2 Playing Feature ?

Google’s new smartphones Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL have many new features. This new feature on mobile will automatically identify the name of songs whenever music is playing around you. The song name shows up on your lock screen, and with a quick tap, you can learn more about the artist, purchase the song, or play the track on your favourite music streaming service.

How to Have this Feature on Android Phone

The best way to emulate the Pixel 2 “Now Playing” functionality is with a new feature in the most popular music-identifying app. So to start, go to the Play Store and install Shazam.

Google Pixel 2 Now Playing Feature

Once installed, open Shazam and run through the setup process. In the middle of your display will be a massive button with the Shazam logo. Long-press the button and a popup will emerge asking if you wish to turn on Auto Shazam. Tap “Turn On” here, then Shazam will ask permission to record audio, so choose “Allow.”

Shazam app
Shazam app

Now that Auto Shazam is enabled, anytime Shazam hears music, it will identify the song and notify you when it gets a match. Though it may take a few minutes, it’s amazingly accurate when it comes to finding any song playing. This even works when your screen is off like in the Pixel 2, but it’s more consistent with the screen on and unlocked.

create an account with Shazam
create an account with Shazam

To see the name of any song, just tap the Shazam found notification and you’ll be taken to a page with more details. If you wish, you can create an account with Shazam which just requires an email address to save your list so that always have access to it. This provides an easy way to stream or purchase the songs Shazam has identified.

Features of the Shazam app

  • You can identify music instantly and share in the thrill of music discovery with the artists like Drake, Bruno Mars, Justin Bieber, The Weeknd, Ed Sheeran, DJ Khaled and others.
  • There are new discoveries from artists you’ve Shazamed that appear automatically.
  • You can follow new artists with a tap of a button and see what those artists are Shazaming.
  • Stay up-to-date about new singles, albums, and videos from the artists you follow.
  • Also, enjoy music lyrics and YouTube videos. Preview songs and add them to Apple Music or Spotify playlists.
  • Also find out what’s popular in your town, your country and the world.
  • You can see what your friends are Shazaming when you connect your Facebook account

Technologies Used

Technologies Used
Technologies Used

The Google Now Playing feature uses many state-of-the-art digital technologies like noise cancellation microphones, audio zoom, digital fingerprints, and machine learning (ML) technology. In addition, the offline music data library varies with your region. Hence, Google Pixel can serve you better through Now Playing.

The stretch of the recorded tune is of 8 seconds so that the device can easily match the sample with a local machine learning model’s track list database.         

Database of the Track List

The offline repository of music data in a Pixel phone ensures that you are not sharing ambient sound with Google or any other personal data processing entities. 

Pixel keeps updating the offline library always up to date so that the device can recognize maximum songs and music. Depending on your region, your Pixel phone can contain up to 500 MB of digital sound fingerprint for music identification. 

Battery Efficient and Manual Activation

Battery Efficient and Manual Activation
Battery Efficient and Manual Activation

You can activate and deactivate the Now Playing feature as per your need. When the feature is online, it scans the surroundings every 60 seconds or more to look for recognizable sounds. It helps the device to save battery. 

Intuitive Control

Google Now Playing shows you music content information even when the device is in lock mode. If you like the ambient music identified by the phone and want to know more, simply tap on the notification at the bottom of the screen.

The notification will expand to show you song details. You can mark the song as your favourite or add it to the playlist for the future.


Google Now Playing is a cornerstone feature that separates Pixel phones from random Android devices. Though other apps provide almost similar services, those applications are not as efficient as Now Playing on Pixel phones.

That is why expert Android developers have developed ways to bring the Now Playing feature to non-Pixel Android phones. Although you need to go through many technically-demanding steps, the result is favourable to you if you are an avid music lover. 

About the author

Kamal Kaur