Google gives Pixel phones another try with Pixel 6 range

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The Pixel 6 range has superfast 5G wireless capability, says Google.
The Pixel 6 range has superfast 5G wireless capability, says Google.

Alphabet-owned internet giant Google has introduced its latest Pixel phone range, the flagship Pixel 6 and 6 Pro, after the tech giant discontinued manufacturing its predecessors, the Pixel 5 and 4 models, early this year.

After not achieving the anticipated success with the midrange Pixel 5 and 4, Google changed focus for the 6 series, positioning it as its flagship contender to Apple and Samsung’s high-end phones.

The phones, which it says have superfast 5G wireless capability, are powered by Google’s first processor, Tensor, a mobile system on a chip designed around Google’s artificial intelligence applications. The company notes this enables “entirely new capabilities” that allow the phone to perform faster, smarter and adapt to user preferences.

Google hopes to beat its competitors with the Pixel 6’s performance and upgraded camera features, while keeping the price slightly lower than its rivals’ high-end phones.

The new range launches with Android 12, Google’s operating system that will be coming later this year to Android devices.

“Pixel has a bold new design this year, with a cohesive look across the software on the inside and the hardware on the outside,” says Brian Rakowski, VP of product management at Google.

“The first thing you’ll notice is the camera bar, giving the phone a clean, symmetrical design that puts the camera front-and-centre. Android 12 builds on the best features of Android, so your phone can really be your phone: It can adapt to you, it’s secure by default and private by design.”

The phone’s camera system, according to Rakowski, has been improved from the hardware to the computational photography, and both phones also have completely new ultra-wide lenses with larger sensors.

The devices have a new 1/1.3-inch primary sensor on the back, which captures up to 150% more light compared to Pixel 5’s primary sensor − creating photos and videos with greater detail and richer colour, says Google.

The Pixel 6 range has a camera bar, giving the phone a symmetrical design.
The Pixel 6 range has a camera bar, giving the phone a symmetrical design.

The Pixel starts at $599 (R8 700), while the Pro, which has upgraded finishes, starts at $899 (R13 000). The phone will be made available to select countries from 28 October, and Google has partnered with global courier services to enable the phone to be shipped to most parts of the globe, including SA.

Google says the Pixel 6 range is among the devices highly-rated for their security capabilities.

“Pixel 6 includes the next-generation Titan M2TM, which works with the Tensor security core to protect sensitive user data, PINs and passwords. We’ve also extended our support window to at least five years of security updates, so your phone has up-to-date protection,” notes Rakowski.

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