Last month Google had revealed that the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL feature a Pixel Visual Core chip for HDR+ processing purposes. The chip, however, was disabled by default and the company planned on enabling it with the Android 8.1 Developer Preview first.
Google dropped the first Developer Preview of Android 8.1 soon after this revelation and many people thought, it would also enable the Pixel Visual Core chip.
— Ron Amadeo (@RonAmadeo) October 31, 2017
To the disappointment of developers though, Google has not enabled the Pixel Visual Core on its new Pixel devices with the Android 8.1 Developer Preview update. Instead, the company has now updated the relevant Pixel Visual Core page to reflect that it would be enabling the chip with the Developer Preview 2 of Android 8.1. Google plans on releasing the second Developer Preview of Android 8.1 in November.
Apart from bringing performance improvements, the Pixel Visual Core would also allow third-party developers to add support for HDR+ functionality in their apps. The Pixel Visual Core is a custom designed IPU from Google featuring eight custom cores and 512 ALUs.
When activated, the Pixel Visual Core will process HDR+ photos up to 5x faster on the new Pixels while consuming 1/10th of the energy when compared to an Application Processor (AP). You can read more about the Pixel Visual Core here.[Via Android Developers]