October 18, 2021

Google continues upending the phone launch playbook with new Pixel 6 teaser – Chrome Unboxed

Usually, this time of year we’re talking about Google and their inability to keep the lid on whatever hardware they are preparing to launch. Remember the Pixel 3? The Pixel 4? How about the Pixelbook, Pixel Slate and Pixelbook Go? All of them leaked, all out there for everyone to see before Google could actually officially unveil them. Leaker culture is what it is and there’s no stopping it at this point, it seems, so why not embrace it?

Google seemed to lean into that thinking in early August when, after several very credible leaks of their upcoming Pixel 6 phones, they up and shared some official looks at the new phones and the new Tensor SoC that will power them from the inside. Though the details were scant, it was honestly plenty to throw water on the leak flames and by simply acknowledging that the phones did exist, it kept hype up while taking back control of the narrative.

Though a few media folks actually got to hold the phones, they couldn’t share photos, particular specs or anything else Google chose not to share. Instead, we got reports of how the devices feel, how they look, and not much else. Over on Google’s Store, they don’t share much more info there, either. You can see the phones from the back, read a tad bit about Tensor, and have a look at the color options. It was enough to give Google the reigns over this story once again, and it was a smart move. After all, leaks have deflated their releases in the past, so why not lean into it a bit?

A new preview has surfaced

Instead of a new leak, we’re now getting a new, official video from Google for the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro. This time around, the details are a bit different. Instead of official press renders and images, we get to briefly see the phone in real people’s hands. We get to see it in the real world. Somehow, for the first time, this makes the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro come alive and become more real.

It looks the same and there are no surprises offered in the video (though I’m almost certain there’s an Easter Egg hiding in there somewhere), but seeing the device being used by humans is just refreshing versus all the renders we’ve looked at for months.

Google’s new “For All You Are” catchline in the video is pretty good, too. The commercial basically highlights three main things Google want users to know the Pixel 6 will be great at: learning, evolving and adapting. Much of that will likely be tied to Material You and Android 12, but I have a feeling there’s more to it than that.

Tensor will allow Google to do things with the camera, ML, and AI that they’ve not done before. Sure, Material You will be an ever-changing, customized look for your phone, but I don’t see where that would have anything to do with learning or evolving. Those sound like ML and AI buzzwords for sure, so I’m hopeful that Google is leaning into these phones doing things that are simple, helpful, and automated. We don’t have long to wait and it feels like the final thing Google has left to do is let us know when the official announcement date will be.

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