Google Pixel 6 Pro: our first impressions and some photos | VIDEO
28 October 2021 57
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Google Pixel 6 Pro is finally in my hands! As a longtime admirer of the Nexus first, then of the Pixels, I have been waiting for this moment with the best of hype for several weeks now. Which then, in truth, it is enough to be a technology lover to be teased by this smartphone, in which Google says it has been serious .
There is the first custom SoC from big G , a photographic sector that promises great things, Android 12 in a bowed version , futuristic AI functions and a very special design, finally there is a practically unbeatable quality / price ratio within the premium range.
Now it’s here, in my hands and I can begin to throw down first impressions. What a beautiful fortune!
A DISTINGUISHABLE DESIGN
The package does not offer great emotions : there is a Type-C / Type-C cable, a standard USB to USB C, a very basic pair of Type-C earphones (they are mandatory in the version sold in France, the one we have). No power supply, no cover, no stickers ( sigh!)
Here it is the Pixel 6 Pro, in the gray + gray color, that is the saddest, but that was there and in the only cut from 128 GB. We got it from the French Google Store and yesterday I personally drove to the border to retrieve it. (Thanks Simone!)
It is large, also quite heavy, but it is very balanced between the top and bottom , despite that “room bar” which would suggest otherwise. The curved edges are very reminiscent of the Google Pixel 2, which as far as I’m concerned remains unbeatable in terms of design. The back cover is in glass Gorilla Glass Victus , as well as the front one, but behind it seems that they have forgotten the oleophobic treatment and in 2 minutes it is already full of fingerprints .
Unfortunately, the protective glass of the optical unit also gets dirty easily , this could be not only an aesthetic problem but also a practical one. Furthermore, the glass of the room bar is divided into 3 parts, the two curves and a flat central one, a detail that I noticed immediately and made me a disappointed grimace on my face.
In general I have to to say I like it, the slightly industrial look is very distinguishable , original and finally different from the usual. Too bad it’s so big, a real shame.
The same design is also found on Pixel 6 but in slightly smaller dimensions, it is also an interesting product and with an even more attractive quality / price ratio, we will certainly talk about it in the future.
Let’s quickly move on to the configuration and then savor the display: 6, 71 “QHD, LTPO up to 120 Hz. Better than that impossible to ask, at least on paper, because if yesterday evening it seemed really remarkable, today with the sun I downsized the judgment a bit. It’s a screen that looks good on the high end but isn’t as bright as some competitors and is not perfect for color management. iPhone 13 Pro and Galaxy S 21 Ultra lo exceed, to be blunt.
In the first minutes of use I noticed a dangerous shift towards green reflections , fortunately, however, the alarm seems to have disappeared. Let’s not forget that these are the very first specimens to arrive on the market, there is always a minimum of defect risk in these cases.
THE GOOGLE TENSOR PROCESSOR
Google Pixel 6 Pro is interesting inside and out , I didn’t see time to test Google Tensor , the first SoC designed by Google specifically to support the computational needs of AI.
It has a brand new architecture, with two X1 cores, 2 A cores 76, 4 cores A 48 , already reading these codes someone will start asking questions: why the A 76 ? Why 2 core X1? I will try to answer everything in the full review, but in the meantime I start with some first impressions.
While restoring my account and almost 200 apps installed, he warmed up for good, then I heard it again hot recording video in 4K at 55 fps . Nothing exceptional, nothing alarming, more a testimony to the fact that a dangerously powerful engine runs under the hood.
No, no benchmark at least for the moment. They are always of little significance, even more so for a SoC in which the “brute power” is only “one of which” of the whole package, oriented more than anything else to machine learning.
However the smartphone is nice awake, responsive, fast, you can rest assured.
- display: Smooth Display OLED LTPO 6.7 “QHD +, 19, 5: 9, 512 ppi, HDR 10 +, refresh rate 120 Hz, screen-to-body ratio 89%, contrast 1. 000. 000: 1
- material: front and back Corning Gorilla Glass Victus
- processor: Google Tensor with Titan M2 co-processor
- 12 GB of RAM
- 128 / 256 Internal GB not expandable
- connectivity: 5G sub-6GHz, WiFi 6E, Bluetooth 5.2 , NFC, GPS, Glonass, Galileo, QZSS
- dual SIM (SIM + eSIM)
- unlock: fingerprint sensor integrated into the display
- protection: IP 68
- audio: stereo
- other: ARCore
- front: 11, 1MP, 1, 22 um, f / 2.2, FF, FOV 94 °
- 50 main MP octa PD Quad Bayer. 1,2um, f / 1, 85, FOV 82 ° , 1/1, 31 “, Super Res Zoom up to 7x
- 12 Ultra wide angle MP, 1, 25 um, f / 2.2, FOV 106. 5th
- 48 MP tele, 0.8um, f / 3.5, FOV 23, 5 °, 1/2 “sensor, OIS, 4x optical zoom, Super Res Zoom up to 20 x
- LDAF, OIS
- dual LED flash, Pixel Shift, Auto HDR, 4K video up to 60 fps
- battery : 5. 003 mAh, Qi certified charging, wired 30 W
- OS: Android 12 with Material You
- support: 5 years
- dimensions and weight: 163, 9x 75, 9×8.9mm for 210 g
- colors: Stormy Black, Cloudy White, Sunny Sorta
GOOGLE DOES NOT GIVE A GOOD EXAMPLE
Within a few hours I was shocked by the amount of bugs, problems graphics, jamming, lag, performance drops, battery drain that Google Pixel 6 Pro has . Incredible. He alternates moments when everything runs smoothly, with others when he throws a tantrum like any other gamma base.
This across the board, from the performance to the photographic part, also passing through abnormal consumption and some problems with the fingerprint sensor.
To be honest, Google has a certain tradition in this sense, those who have tried their smartphones since day one will surely remember the tragic situation of Pixel 2 XL, the Pixel 4 bugs, not to mention the first Pixel, on which Google found the square only after a few months. Going back a bit, Nexus 6, Nexus 4, all problematic in the first weeks, then gradually put back on track with some updates.
Perhaps the fact that Google Pixel 6 and 6 Pro officially arrive in Italy only in 2022, it might turn out to be a good thing in that regard.
FIRST IMPRESSIONS OF USE
Android 12 comes in the full optional version with the Pixel , this means dealing with a change in graphic language that could also be indigestible.
The cleanliness and simplicity of Android 11 are a distant memory with the Material You, personally I miss them and I struggle to accept the presence of such emphasized animations and a very present physics. The notification and quick toggle curtain is confusing and has been revolutionized for the umpteenth time, which is getting a bit disturbing.
There are some more taps that we are forced to do for trivial operations (activate the silent, act on the brightness slider, turn off the WiFi) and it makes me think that is the price to pay for such a refined and bombastic graphics. De gustobus. Personally I’ll have to get used to it but I don’t find it right to force the user to do it every 12 months.
Graphics aside, the experience of using the Pixels is always pleasant and accurate. Going deeper into the menus you realize how many useful automatisms there are, how many junk options Google will save us because the smartphone is really smart.
In this sense, you have to give time to time, you cannot review a Pixel after 2 days, you have to try it for a while, enter its mechanism, then it is difficult to go back.
I add here that the stereo sound seemed excellent but not irresistible , the vibration it is powerful and is located just below the display , it vibrates heavily but not very precisely, it is strange and here too you have to get used to it.
These are first impressions, I remember, I’ll probably have changed my mind in a few days.
The photographic hardware of this smartphone, combined with the proverbial Google software, has really important potential , although I have some doubts about the choice of sensors.
- 50 Standard MP: SAMSUNG ISOCELL GN1
- 48 MP telephoto lens: SAMSUNG ISOCELL GM2
- 12 MP ultrawide: Sony IMX 330
In Google they will certainly have made the necessary assessments, but GN1 is now overtaken by the GN2 by almost an inch, the GM2 is adopted by low-end and / or at least 1 year old smartphones, the 363 is a sensor of the 2017.
I took some photos between last night and today, I post them in a gallery so that everyone can get an idea. There will obviously be a need for further and more comprehensive evaluations, comparisons and analyzes.
The thing that struck me positively is the great cleanliness of some photos , the accuracy of the complexion (I took some photos of my baby but I don’t insert them for privacy), the light it brings out in some nocturnal contexts. The less convincing aspect is instead the constancy of performance , just the workhorse here is a stumbling block of the past. Some images are really bad, wrong. HDR is invasive, there is an over-saturation of some areas, an aggressive denoiser and the pure image quality in low light often leaves something to be desired.
Last night I had Honor with me 31 ( mid-range) of which I can not yet show the photos for embargo, but I assure you that in some circumstances it ridiculed the Pixel 6 Pro. Inevitably it is all the fault of an absolutely immature and improvable software.
SOON FOR REVIEW
While I was writing a first update with the security patches (which maybe bring something else as a dowry, who knows), we must also take into account that Google can convey updates of pieces of OS through the Play Store, I do not therefore exclude that in the space of ten days things can radically change. In this regard, watch out for the hasty reviews that you may read, keep in mind that this smartphone can change its face and most likely will soon.
To date I have been a little excited and a little disappointed , although it recognizes the excellent data sheet / price ratio and sees great potential in 360 degrees. In the review I will be more exhaustive and precise, it takes some time to make friends with this thoroughbred horse. We will update again!