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How the new Pixel 6 and 6 Pro stack up to previous Google phones

With an all-new Tensor chip, new camera hardware and more, the Pixel 6 line offers a lot of improvement over past Pixels

Google unveiled its latest Pixel smartphones at its fall hardware event on October 19th. There’s a lot to be excited about with the new Pixel 6 and 6 Pro, but if you have an older Pixel, you may be wondering if it’s worth the upgrade.

Although we’d need a whole review to answer that question (and trust us, it’s coming!), we also put together this quick comparison to show what you get with a Pixel 6 over the Pixel 5 and Pixel 4.

Pixel 6

Pixel 6 Pro

Pixel 5

Google Pixel 4 XL

Display

6.4-inch FHD+ (1080 x 2340) OLED display, 403ppi, 90Hz refresh rate

6.71-inch, (1440 x 3120) LTPO AMOLED display, 512ppi, 120Hz refresh rate

6.0-inch FHD+ (1080 x 2340) OLED display, 432 ppi, 19.5:9 aspect ratio

6.3-inch, OLED display, 1440 x 3040 pixels, 90Hz refresh rate, 19:9 aspect ratio

Processor

Tensor

Tensor

Snapdragon 765G

Snapdragon 855

RAM

8GB of RAM

12GB of RAM

8GB of RAM

6GB of RAM

Storage

128GB, 256GB

128GB, 256GB

128GB

64GB, 128GB

Dimensions (in.)

160.4 x 75.1 x 8.2mm

163.9 x 75.8 x 8.9mm

144.7 x 70.4 x 8.0mm

160.4 x 75.1 x 8..2mm

Weight

151g

193g

Rear Facing Camera

50-megapixel (primary) + 12-megapixel (ultrawide)

50-megapixel (primary) + 48-megapixel (telelphoto, x4 zoom) + 12-megapixel (ultrawide)

12.2-megapixel (f/1.7) + 16-megapixel (f/2.2, ultrawide)

16-megapixel (f/2.4, OIS, wide angle) + 12.2-megapixel (f/1.7, OIS, telephoto)

Front Facing Camera

8-megapixel

11.1-megapixel

8-megapixel (f//2.0)

8-megapixel (f/2.0, ultra-wide)

OS

Android 12

Android 12

Android 11

Android 10

Battery

4,600mAh

5,000mAh

4,000mAh

3700mAh

Network Connectivity

LTE/ 5G

LTE/ 5G

GSM/HSPA/LTE/5G

GSM/HSPA/LTE

Sensors

Fingerprint (in-display), accelerometor, gyro, proximity, compass

Fingerprint (in-display), accelerometor, gyro, proximity, compass

Fingerprint (rear), accelerometor, gyro, proximity, compass`

face unlock, accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass, barometer

SIM Type

Nano SIM, eSIM

Nano SIM, eSIM

Nano SIM

Nano SIM, eSIM

Launch Date

October 28, 2021

October 28, 2021

September 30, 2020

October 15, 2019

Misc

Colours: Kinda Coral, Sorta Seafoam, Stormy Black | IP68 water and dust resistance

Colours: Cloudy White, Sorta Sunny, Stormy Black | IP68 water and dust resistance

Colours: Just Black | Subtle Sage, 90Hz refresh rate

Colours: Just Black, Oh So Orange, Clearly White | Motion Sense, face unlock, New Assistant (coming to Canada), Active Edge

Display

Pixel 6

6.4-inch FHD+ (1080 x 2340) OLED display, 403ppi, 90Hz refresh rate

Pixel 6 Pro

6.71-inch, (1440 x 3120) LTPO AMOLED display, 512ppi, 120Hz refresh rate

Pixel 5

6.0-inch FHD+ (1080 x 2340) OLED display, 432 ppi, 19.5:9 aspect ratio

Google Pixel 4 XL

6.3-inch, OLED display, 1440 x 3040 pixels, 90Hz refresh rate, 19:9 aspect ratio

Processor

Pixel 6

Tensor

Pixel 6 Pro

Tensor

Pixel 5

Snapdragon 765G

Google Pixel 4 XL

Snapdragon 855

RAM

Pixel 6

8GB of RAM

Pixel 6 Pro

12GB of RAM

Pixel 5

8GB of RAM

Google Pixel 4 XL

6GB of RAM

Storage

Pixel 6

128GB, 256GB

Pixel 6 Pro

128GB, 256GB

Pixel 5

128GB

Google Pixel 4 XL

64GB, 128GB

Dimensions (in.)

Pixel 6

160.4 x 75.1 x 8.2mm

Pixel 6 Pro

163.9 x 75.8 x 8.9mm

Pixel 5

144.7 x 70.4 x 8.0mm

Google Pixel 4 XL

160.4 x 75.1 x 8..2mm

Weight

Pixel 6

Pixel 6 Pro

Pixel 5

151g

Google Pixel 4 XL

193g

Rear Facing Camera

Pixel 6

50-megapixel (primary) + 12-megapixel (ultrawide)

Pixel 6 Pro

50-megapixel (primary) + 48-megapixel (telelphoto, x4 zoom) + 12-megapixel (ultrawide)

Pixel 5

12.2-megapixel (f/1.7) + 16-megapixel (f/2.2, ultrawide)

Google Pixel 4 XL

16-megapixel (f/2.4, OIS, wide angle) + 12.2-megapixel (f/1.7, OIS, telephoto)

Front Facing Camera

Pixel 6

8-megapixel

Pixel 6 Pro

11.1-megapixel

Pixel 5

8-megapixel (f//2.0)

Google Pixel 4 XL

8-megapixel (f/2.0, ultra-wide)

OS

Pixel 6

Android 12

Pixel 6 Pro

Android 12

Pixel 5

Android 11

Google Pixel 4 XL

Android 10

Battery

Pixel 6

4,600mAh

Pixel 6 Pro

5,000mAh

Pixel 5

4,000mAh

Google Pixel 4 XL

3700mAh

Network Connectivity

Pixel 6

LTE/ 5G

Pixel 6 Pro

LTE/ 5G

Pixel 5

GSM/HSPA/LTE/5G

Google Pixel 4 XL

GSM/HSPA/LTE

Sensors

Pixel 6

Fingerprint (in-display), accelerometor, gyro, proximity, compass

Pixel 6 Pro

Fingerprint (in-display), accelerometor, gyro, proximity, compass

Pixel 5

Fingerprint (rear), accelerometor, gyro, proximity, compass`

Google Pixel 4 XL

face unlock, accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass, barometer

SIM Type

Pixel 6

Nano SIM, eSIM

Pixel 6 Pro

Nano SIM, eSIM

Pixel 5

Nano SIM

Google Pixel 4 XL

Nano SIM, eSIM

Launch Date

Pixel 6

October 28, 2021

Pixel 6 Pro

October 28, 2021

Pixel 5

September 30, 2020

Google Pixel 4 XL

October 15, 2019

Misc

Pixel 6

Colours: Kinda Coral, Sorta Seafoam, Stormy Black | IP68 water and dust resistance

Pixel 6 Pro

Colours: Cloudy White, Sorta Sunny, Stormy Black | IP68 water and dust resistance

Pixel 5

Colours: Just Black | Subtle Sage, 90Hz refresh rate

Google Pixel 4 XL

Colours: Just Black, Oh So Orange, Clearly White | Motion Sense, face unlock, New Assistant (coming to Canada), Active Edge

First things first: the specs. The Pixel 6 and 6 Pro are much larger than their predecessors, boasting 6.4-inch and 6.71-inch displays respectively. It’s also worth noting that the Pixel 6 continues offering a 90Hz display, while the 6 Pro bumps that up to 120Hz. As for RAM, the Pixel 6 is on par with the Pixel 5 at 8GB, while the Pixel 6 Pro boasts a whopping 12GB. Both the 6 and 6 Pro start at 128GB of storage and offer larger batteries at 4,600mAh and 5,000mAh respectively.

One of the biggest differences, however, is the new Google Tensor system-on-a-chip (SoC). While previous Pixel phones used Qualcomm’s Snapdragon chips, this time around Google’s Tensor is powering all the new features. It’s arguably the star of the show — during the reveal event, Google showed off how Tensor enables new features like Magic Eraser, live translate and more.

Pixel 6

Unfortunately, Tensor is going to be the main reason why many new Pixel 6 features don’t find their way back to older Pixel models. Google says that it designed the chip to power these features to improve efficiency and make them work faster — without Tensor, those features won’t work (or won’t work as well).

It still remains to be seen what performance is like with Tensor, but my guess is it’ll be fine thanks to Google’s optimization magic.

All-new camera

Another area that saw significant improvement was the camera. Google’s Pixel camera hardware hasn’t meaningfully changed in years, but the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro make some huge changes.

The most notable change is the new camera bar that extends across the back of the phone. It’s certainly a unique look, although I’m interested to see how large it is in real life. There’s the new 50-megapixel primary sensor, which is also larger than before. All this should mean we’ll see higher-res photos with more light from the Pixel 6 series.

Pixel 6 camera

Both the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro also feature 12-megapixel ultrawide cameras, while the 6 Pro sports a 48-megapixel telephoto lens in a ‘periscope’ configuration. The periscope technique involves using a prism to reflect the light at a 90-degree angle, allowing phones to have more extensive lens configurations that extend through the body of the phone.

Couple with Google’s AI and ML magic and several impressive new features like ‘Magic Eraser,’ the new camera hardware looks set to provide some stunning pictures.

Considering all these new things together, it definitely looks like the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro will be must-have devices for most Pixel owners. Those with a Pixel 5 likely won’t need to upgrade, but the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro make a compelling case (at least, on paper).

For all of our coverage from Google’s Pixel 6 series event, follow this link.

Image credit: Google

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