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Everything we know about Google’s next phone

With the Pixel 5 now on shelves and offering that slick version of Android for a good price, our eyes are already turning to what Google could have in store with the Pixel 6. Here’s everything we know so far.

The Google Pixel 6 went in a different direction to the Pixel 5. For instance, Google ditched the XL model and used a mid-range Snapdragon 765G chipset. It also came with a more affordable price.

We were big fans of the Pixel 5 and it sits comfortably in our best Android phones and best camera phones list so here’s all we know so far about the next model.

Google Pixel 6 release date

There isn’t much to go on in regards to the release date of the Pixel 6 yet. However, looking back at the Pixel 5 launch should give us an idea.

Google’s previous flagship phone was announced at a live-streamed event on September 30 2020, with a full release following on October 15.

Google Pixel 6 leaks and rumours

The biggest news we’ve heard so far regarding the Pixel 6 is that it will be among the first Google devices to be powered not by a Qualcomm Snapdragon chipset, but by Google’s own GS101 SoC (system-on-chip) reportedly codenamed Whitechapel.

The report states the chip will be built with assistance from Samsung.

This is interesting for a number of reasons and it raises a lot of questions about the Pixel 6 (along with whatever other Pixel devices we get this year). The biggest question here is around performance, and whether this chip will offer performance more akin to a flagship phone or the Snapdragon 765G mid-range phone that powered both the Pixel 5 and Pixel 4a 5G.

Google has added its own co-processors into its phones before and this very much seems to be the next stage in this.

What we want from the Google Pixel 6

1. Please Google, can we have an XL version

There was a very obvious missing member of the Pixel 5 family and that was an XL version.

Usually a stalwart of Google’s phone line, there was no larger version of the Pixel 5, Pixel 4a or Pixel 4a 5G and that was a disappointment for many.

Without an XL model, the largest display you can get on the latest bunch of Pixel phones is 6.2-inches on the Pixel 4a 5G. That’s small in comparison to other Android devices, with only really the smallest Samsung Galaxy S20 iteration matching it.

We do really appreciate the small screen options, however there are so many things that are better when you’ve got a big display. Shooting pictures and having a big viewfinder, for instance, or game streaming through Stadia or GeForce Now.

Hopefully if, or when, we get a Pixel 6 they’ll be an XL version around too.

Related: Best phones

Pixel 5

2. Mid-range and cheaper is great, but let’s have a Pro version too

We certainly do appreciate Google’s approach with the Pixel 5. We need more affordable phones that offer true ‘flagship’ features and the camera on Google’s latest is certainly up there with the best.

But, we’d still like Google to flex its high-end muscles again, possibly in the form of a Pro version. Imagine if we get a Pixel 6 with mid-range specs and a Pixel 6 Pro with a better display, Snapdragon 888 chipset and the bells-and-whistles we’d expect.

3. It’s time for a new camera sensor

Google’s Pixel line of phones has always been known for its camera skills and we were impressed with the photos we got from the Pixel 5. Especially when you consider the £599 price-tag.

However. a lot of advancements in recent years have been down to computational tricks and we think we’re starting to see the limit of the current sensor Google is using. It’s no longer the camera king, with Apple, Samsung and Huawei now arguably better choices.

But, if we do get a brand-new sensor along with the usual year-on-year AI additions behind the scenes then there’s every chance Google will be back on top this time in 2021.

4. And while you’re at it can we have some proper zoom

Speaking of the camera, we’d love Google to finally go triple and combine a wide, ultra wide and telephoto camera together for the first time.

The Pixel 5’s zoom is far behind the competition and while that’s fine for the mid-range, if Google was to go high-end again then a periscope lens for ace optical zooming would be appreciated.

5. Don’t sacrifice the excellent battery life

While a lot of the items on the list are things we want added, there’s something we want to ensure is kept: the strong battery life.

After the awful endurance on the Pixel 4 and 4 XL, we were overjoyed to comfortably get a day of use out of all the new Pixels. Whatever new features are added with the Pixel 6, we want that good battery life to stay.

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