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Google gives the Pixel a new look

Not the Pixel you remember

The Pixel 6 marks a change in design for Google’s smartphones. With the exception of the Pixel 6 Pro, it is the largest phone Google has made so far. It sports a 6.4-inch AMOLED display with a faster 90Hz screen refresh rate, plus brighter output and more vibrant colours.

The back comes with a new camera array laid out across the panel to stand out further in showcasing this phone as a worthy shooter. Gorilla Glass on both the screen and back protect the Pixel 6 from accidental scratches and falls, while matte edges make the phone easier to hold for better grip.

A larger 4614mAh battery and better optimization means you won’t have to worry about whether you can make it through a full day on one charge. You can still charge wirelessly, or via USB-C, as well as reverse wireless charge when you need to charge something in a pinch. The Pixel 6 also gets a boost in both memory and storage, coming with 12GB of RAM and 128GB or 256GB of storage.

What’s the difference between the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro?

The Pixel 6 Pro has some design traits and features that the Pixel 6 doesn’t have. The Pixel 6 has a smaller display compared to the Pixel 6 Pro’s 6.7-inch AMOLED. Matte edges are different from the metallic alloy Google used to manufacture the 6 Pro. Both phones have Gorilla Glass Victus on the front, yet only the 6 Pro has it on the back, whereas the Pixel 6 uses the less durable Gorilla Glass 6.

The Pixel 6 is equipped with two cameras in the rear: the wide and ultra-wide. In addition to those two cameras, which are the same, the Pixel 6 Pro also has a 12-megapixel telephoto lens alongside them. The front camera on the Pixel 6 Pro has a wider 97-degree field of view, while the Pixel 6 shoots at a narrower 84-degrees.

While the Pixel 6 has a 90Hz refresh rate for its AMOLED screen, the 6 Pro is faster at 120Hz. And because of its smaller size relative to the 6 Pro, the latter has a larger 5000mAh battery.

They also differ in colour options, with the Pixel 6 Pro coming in Kinda Coral, Stormy Black or Sorta Seafoam. The Pixel 6 comes in Sorta Sunny, Cloudy White or Stormy Black.

New hardware, new software

Google put its own silicon into the Pixel 6, so this phone runs on a totally different processor than previous Pixel phones did. Tensor is a system-on-a-chip (SoC) that enables old and new features to run up to 80% faster than the Pixel 5. That includes smarter artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning work together to help translate foreign languages faster, transcribe live recordings and make Voice Typing more seamless.

It also extends to useful everyday features, like phone calls. You still get Call Screen, Google’s screening feature to root out spammers and telemarketers, and it gets some extra help. Wait Time can give you a sense of how long it may take to speak with a customer service person before you make the call. Hold for Me uses Googles Assistant to tell you when an agent is ready to talk when you call a toll-free number. Direct My Call is a new feature Google will soon add to Canada to bypass an automated menu during a call.

Real-time translation and Voice Typing simplify how easy it is to communicate in different languages. Dictate text messages when you can’t type them, and the Pixel 6 will take the spelling of your contacts and apply them whenever you say their names. It even adds punctuation for greater accuracy.

The Pixel 6 starts with Android 12, but you can expect three years of Android updates, and five years of security updates. The Titan M2 chip inside helps protect you and your data from outside threats by working in the background to deal with any potential issues you need to be aware of.

New-look camera

Google changed the cameras on the front and back to help you produce better images. The main wide camera is a 50-megapixel sensor that is much larger than the Pixel 5. Shoot with it in Night Sight mode, and you can take in up to 150% more light than the Pixel 5 could detect.

A newer 12-megapixel ultra-wide camera also benefits from the Pixel 6’s ability to draw in more light. While it can’t capture 150% more light, it is still more than capable of drawing in more than the Pixel 5’s ultra-wide lens could. The 8-megapixel front camera keeps your selfie game intact whenever you need to point it at yourself.

The new Motion mode gives you two new ways to capture scenes with movement. Follow and lock onto a subject with Action Pan and freeze them in sharp motion while the background is blurry. Use Long Exposure to slow down all movement for softer and more pleasing impact. Try Magic Eraser to remove unwanted parts of a photo afterward by just rubbing them out.

You can also record video in 4K at 60fps with both rear lenses, and the front camera. All of the previous modes return, including Slow Motion, Cinematic Pan and Time Lapse.