Google Pixel 6 Review: And Is It the Best Android Smartphone?
Is the Google Pixel 6 the best Android smartphone?
Hi friends! Finally, we have one of the most long-awaited Android smartphones in our review - Pixel 6. As you probably already know, Pixels are considered top flagships with cool cameras and great optimization. But there is a big problem, which we will immediately voice - it is very problematic to purchase smartphones from this company in Ukraine or Russia. In free sale they are only in Europe and the USA. Of course, if you really want to, then getting a brand new Pixel 6 is possible. But is it worth it - the central question, which we will answer in today's review.
Display resolution and refresh rate:
1080x2400 pixels, 90Hz, HDR10+ support
158.6x74.8x8.9 mm, weight 207 g.
Glass + aluminum
Stormy Black (dark grey), Kinda Coral (coral), Sorta Seafoam (turquoise)
5nm Google Tensor
Two Cortex-X1 cores @ 2.80GHz, two Cortex-A76 cores @ 2.25GHz, and four Cortex-A55 cores @ 1.80GHz
8/128 GB, 8/256 GB
Main module: 50 MP, f/1.9 aperture, 1/1.31 pixel size, 1.2µm sensor size, omnidirectional phase detection autofocus, laser autofocus, optical stabilization;
Ultra-wide module: 12 MP, f/2.2 aperture, 1.25µm sensor size, 114˚ field of view
8 MP, f/2.0 aperture, 1.12µm matrix size
Bluetooth 5.2, NFC, Wi-Fi 6, GPS
$599 (8/128 GB)
With its characteristics, Google Pixel 6 is not surprising. Everything is just fine here, at the level of flagship devices. But let's understand in more detail why this device is so good (or vice versa bad).
We start, as always, with the package, and here Google is a little disappointing. In the kit you will not find a power supply, only an OTG adapter, a USB Type-C cable, a branded case and uninteresting documentation. Yes, yes, Google has also joined the company of companies that allegedly worry about nature and consider the power supply to be an extra detail in the phone package.
The original case is, of course, a nice addition: it really protects the smartphone and especially the camera block. But the cover looks just disgusting. Because of it, an already wide smartphone becomes even wider, and the company logo is simply glued. Along with Pixel 6 in dark gray colors, respectively, comes with a gray case, but its color is dirty and not at all pretty. In short, the impression of the Pixel 6 configuration is twofold, and the scales are more inclined towards the negative side.
The design of the Pixel 6 is specific. At first glance, it seems that the phone is square and bulky, there are no neat curves, and the bezels are thick and stand out strongly on the front panel. The back of the case is surrounded by a black stripe, on which the camera unit is located. The company logo is located in the center of the back cover. There are three colors - dark gray, which is more suitable for men, light pink for girls and turquoise, which can be called universal. The colors are really cute and understated.
The back panel of the Google Pixel 6 is made of glass and the frames are aluminum. A separate plus for Google is that plastic elements are not used anywhere. But there are complaints about the assembly itself. If you look closely, you can see that the smartphone is assembled quite poorly. And this is unpleasantly surprising, because you are holding an A-brand device in your hands, and not just Chinese junk for $ 100. The rough joint between the glass body and metal frames is especially felt. Not fatal, of course, and you can easily forget about it, because there is no physical discomfort when you hold the phone in your hands. And yet we could not help but warn you about this.
The Pixel 6 is big, wide and heavy. Dimensions are 158.6 x 74.8 x 8.9 mm with a weight of 207 grams. If you are looking for a more or less compact mobile device, this is definitely not for the Pixel 6. We also almost forgot to say about moisture protection: Google Pixel 6 is protected from moisture according to the IP68 standard. This is an important setting that most Android flagships don't have. The first impression that the Pixel 6 makes with its appearance is that it is bulky and a bit sloppy. And yet, we are sure that the design of the Pixel 6 will appeal to many, because, you see, everyone is already tired of the same type of elegant OnePlus-style flagships. I want something new and even specific.
Of course, Google 6 received an AMOLED screen with a resolution of 1080x2400 pixels. Other parameters were not expected, given the price of the phone. The display has a diagonal of 6.4 inches, the working area occupies 83.4% of the entire front panel. The screen quality is not bad, the brightness is enough, the color reproduction is correct. But the refresh rate is only 90Hz, not 120Hz. There is no LTPO matrix either. For that kind of money, you can find smartphones with cooler screens, where there will be a royal refresh rate, and other goodies. And so in the display of Pixel 6 there is nothing special.
Separately, I would like to highlight the protection of tempered glass Corning Gorilla Glass Victus. In some situations, this glass is really able to save the smartphone screen. The under-display fingerprint scanner is a major new addition to Pixel smartphones. The scanner works relatively quickly, but not always perfectly.
The Always on Display mode is also specific. You can't change the ANM style no matter how hard you try. Everything is set by default and cannot be edited. Echoes of the new material design of Material You are felt, which we will talk about a little later.
Moving on to the "heart" of the Pixel 6 - its processor. On board the smartphone is a proprietary Google Tensor chip. In order not to drag out the intrigue, we’ll say right away that it produces results at the level of Qualcomm Snapdragon 888+ in Vivo X70 Pro Plus . It would seem that this is a top-end processor, but miracles do not happen in games. As always, we had the heavy toys Shadowgun Legends and Genshin Impact on our test. Things are going well in Shadowgun Legends, with an average frame rate of 59 FPS throughout the game. The maximum temperature in one place of the rear panel reached 45 degrees. These are normal indicators, and playing with them is more than comfortable. But in Genshin Impact, the picture is a little worse - the frame rate remained at 37 FPS, and the case heated up to 45 degrees over the entire surface. Yes, and there were periodic drawdowns of up to 20 frames, which also does not improve the gameplay.
In principle, you can play at ultra settings, but the Google Tensor processor is still inferior in terms of gaming to the Snapdragon 860 and 870 chips that are found in mid-budget models. Yes, and you will agree that you will not buy Pixel 6 for the sake of games. There are other, cooler options for this. And Pixel 6 is good in terms of camera and stable OS.
A few words about memory options. Google Pixel 6 has two modifications: 8/128 GB and 8/256 GB. The persistent storage standard is UFS 3.1. Everything is fine here, 8 gigabytes of RAM is enough, the phone flies. Of the minuses - you can not put a memory card.
The OS is another strength of the Pixel 6, and that's a pattern. If you want to try the coolest Android phone, look towards Pixels. Yes, sometimes there are minor bugs, but this happens with absolutely all mobile devices. Even with iPhones, which are famous for their super stable performance. Recall that Pixel 6 is powered by Android 12. But the design of Material You is a little annoying: everything is done in some sugary pink tones, the adaptation of shortcuts makes the icons the same as on Chinese nonames. All this is unusual and somehow strange.
Luckily, the Pixel boasts very deep customization. The user has the opportunity to almost completely customize the interface and the display of elements to suit their preferences. Starting with the color scheme of the system and ending with the wallpaper. Cool, right? This slightly improves the impression of Material You for the better. And in terms of stability, Pixel 6 should become a real TOP when new builds of the twelfth Android come out.
Pixels are called the best camera phones. And this is the real truth. First, let's quickly go over the technical specifications, and then we will tell you how the Pixel 6 takes pictures in reality compared to competitors. The main camera of the Googlephone has only two modules. I am glad that the company does not chase the number of sensors, like, for example, Xiaomi, but only makes a few necessary modules with cool parameters. The main sensor is 50 MP with f / 1.9 aperture, laser autofocus and optical stabilization are supported. There is also a 12-megapixel ultra-wide module with a 114˚ field of view. Video recording is possible in a maximum resolution of 4K at 60fps.
The Pixel 6 is undeniably great at taking photos. There are quite a few competitors for this phone in terms of photos. We compared the Pixel 6 with the iPhone 13, and we will say right away that there is no specific winner in this comparison. The fact is that the approach and image processing algorithms for these models are completely different. Pixel 6 takes "embellished" pictures - very light, bright and unrealistic. It looks cool, but there is no plausible color rendition here.
The iPhone, on the other hand, takes more faded, natural and, let's say, cloudy photos. In night shooting, the photos from the Pixel also turn out to be bright and light, and from the iPhone - very dark. But the dynamic range, portrait mode and detailing are definitely better with the Pixel 6. In general, see for yourself: you need realistic images - this is for the iPhone 13, but just beautiful pictures - for the Pixel 6. It is better to shoot video on the thirteenth iPhone. It also has better noise reduction, and the sound recording is excellent.
Let's mention one more feature of Google Pixel 6 - removal of unnecessary objects in the photo. You can remove a person, a car, a building, a tree, a branch - anything. The function works properly and will definitely come in handy for many users. Pixel 6 also has two significant drawbacks. Firstly, this is the lack of a telephoto. Secondly, you can not switch between the main and front camera.
The front camera of the Pixel 6 is 8 megapixels with video recording at 1080p@30fps. Fotka normally, but, again, does not do miracles. There are offers on the market with a cooler front camera.
Pixel 6 is equipped with a 4614 mAh battery. There is fast wired charging at 30W and fast wireless at 21W. In theory, you can charge your smartphone up to 50% in 30 minutes. But do not forget that there is no power supply included, so you will have to purchase a separate branded charger with the appropriate power or a wireless station. This is a waste of time and money, and you still won’t get super fast charging. Even with the purchase of a branded power supply, it will take at least an hour to fully recharge the battery. Chinese flagships in this area benefit significantly, because you can find 67-watt and even 120-watt fast charging there.
In terms of autonomy, the Pixel 6 produces quite a normal result. In our proprietary test , the smartphone lasted 9 hours and 38 minutes. That is, with more or less active use, you are guaranteed to get a day of battery life. This is not to say that this is some kind of cool result - it is just normal.
And here the main problem of the Pixel 6 and all Google phones in general is revealed. As we mentioned earlier, phones from this brand cannot be found on official sale either in Russia, or in Ukraine, or in other CIS countries. You will be able to officially purchase the device only in Europe or the USA. And there the price for it is $599 for the basic version. This is not much, given the quality of the product, but we cannot count on such a price.
There is an option to purchase the Pixel 6 through an intermediary, but then we immediately add the shipping cost and customs duty to the price of the smartphone. A lot will come out. Some people in our countries are already taking pre-orders for the Pixel 6, demanding 900 bucks. This is an inadequate price list, and it’s definitely not worth considering buying a new product from Google at this price.
Google Pixel 6 turned out to be a good smartphone with its pros and cons. And let's be honest, the benefits still outweigh the drawbacks. Google has significantly upgraded its mobile device both in terms of hardware and in terms of the operating system. Whether the Pixel 6 is better than Chinese flagships is a big question. But two chic points can be noted - this is the camera and the operation of the OS. Is it worth it to buy a phone from "gray" sellers at a very high price - decide for yourself. Personally, I think that if you want a brand new Pixel, then it's better to buy the Pro version, which we'll talk about in the next review.
- protection against moisture and dust according to the IP68 standard;
- tempered glass Gorilla Glass Victus;
- stable operation of Android 12;
- the possibility of deep customization of the OS;
- adequate heating in games;
- excellent main camera;
- a day of battery life with active use.
- specific and bulky design;
- average performance in heavy games;
- no telephoto lens;
- you need to buy a power supply with fast charging;
- cannot be officially purchased in Russia and Ukraine.
Be sure to leave your impressions of the Pixel 6 in the comments and watch the video review. See you!