Google launches Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro to take on the iPhone 13
Google has unveiled two new Pixel smartphones – the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro – at a virtual event this evening.
The tech giant has seemingly taken a different approach than it did with last year’s mid-range Pixel 5 phone.
For 2021, the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro feature bleeding-edge components to help them go toe-to-toe with the best offerings from Apple and Samsung.
The two devices are built around Google’s in-house Tensor processor chip, which focuses on artificial intelligence, and the latest version of the Android operating system.
The Tensor chip is what Google is really keen on. It compares it to a Snapdragon 888, which is Qualcomm’s high-end processor found in many premium smartphones.
And, as with Pixels past, the camera is one of the main focuses of what the hardware and software can achieve. In fact, Google has forgone a camera bump in favour of an entire ‘camera bar’ that stretches across the back of the two phones.
The company said: ‘Pixel 6 has a distinctive graphic and vibrant look. The matte black metal band complements the expressive, versatile color options. Pixel 6 Pro was inspired by the finishes you see in luxury jewelry and watches.
‘It’s made with a polished metal unibody and transitions into gorgeous curved glass in colors that complement the metallic frames.’
Google says the 50-megapixel wide rear-facing camera can capture up to 150 per cent more light than the Pixel 5’s camera and, on the Pro phone, is capable of a 4x optical zoom and 20x digital zoom. The selfie camera on the Pro is also now able to capture 4k video.
There are some impressive new software tricks as well. The new ‘Magic Eraser’ mode lets you casually remove things from your photos – like strangers in the background or unwanted objects. And the new ‘Motion Mode’ mimics the long exposure settings on traditional cameras that turn rivers into wispy pathways of water and car headlights into unbroken streams of light on a dark road.
Google also claims a lot of work has gone into accurately recording skin tones when photographing human subjects. It’s not always been the smoothest ride thus far.
‘Our teams have been working directly with photographers, cinematographers and colorists who are celebrated for their beautiful and accurate imagery of communities of color,’ the company said.
‘We asked them to test our cameras and editing tools and provide honest feedback, which helped make our camera and auto enhancement features more equitable.’
While the cameras will no doubt impress, the rest of the phones are no slouch either.
The Pixel 6 has a 6.4-inch 2,400 x 1,080 OLED screen at 90Hz refresh while the Pro model bumps that up to a 6.7-inch 3,120 x 1440 OLED screen at 120Hz refresh.
There’s 8GB of RAM in the regular and 12GB in the Pro as well as storage configurations of 128GB and 256GB for both. And, because we’re still all wearing masks – Google has put in-display fingerprint scanners on both phones.
Both phones are rated IP68 water and dust resistant and neither one will come with a charger in the box.
Prices for the Pixel 6 start at £599 while its bigger brother starts at £849.