An extreme yet effective option
Factory resetting your Pixel phone clears all stored data, restoring it to the state it was in when it left the factory. It's an excellent last-resort method for troubleshooting once you've exhausted other options. It's also something you should do when you trade in your old Pixel and upgrade to a new Google Pixel 7 Pro. This is the most common reason for factory resetting, as you can be confident that no personal data remains on the device.
We're still waiting to try out the second-gen Tensor chip
Last year, Google's Pixel 6 series brought many firsts to the Pixel lineup. Perhaps the most important of them was the inclusion of the Google Tensor chip. While it was designed in-house by Google, the company notably enlisted the help of Samsung for actually putting it together. It looks like this collaboration will keep going for the foreseeable future, as Samsung is reported to be already hard at work testing a next-generation Google Tensor chip — one that could be interesting if you're planning to put off your Pixel purchase until 2023.
A new 'Other devices' field now lists further connected accessories
Android 13 Beta 3 is officially out. It definitely looked like more of a minor update at first glance, with the most notable thing about it being its platform stability milestone, but there are definitely a lot of changes on it that you might take a while to come across once you install it on your phone. Among them, you'll find more fine-tuned phone search capabilities or a slightly larger, iOS-like gesture navigation bar. A revamped version of the recently-introduced battery widget was also spotted. It's good news even if you're not a beta user, though, because it's also rolling out to older Android versions as well.
All the bells and whistles in the world won't make it a good value
The Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro were a much-needed breath of fresh air in Google's smartphone lineup. After years of half-measures and poor decisions, the Pixel team finally nailed it. While Google is getting better at phones, it still struggles with accessories. Case in point: the $79 Pixel Stand 2. The Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro can charge at up to 21 and 23W, respectively, matching wired charging speeds. However, that's just the maximum speed. Most of the time, the Pixel Stand charges much slower. That makes the price tag hard to swallow, particularly when other OEMs are producing much faster custom wireless standards. To top it off, the stand's Pixel-exclusive features don't work well enough to make up for that.
It's reportedly been delayed again
2022 is shaping up to be the most significant expansion to the Pixel franchise yet. At Google I/O, we weren't just treated to official announcements for the Pixel 6a and Pixel Buds Pro — we also saw brief teases of the Pixel 7 and 7 Pro, the Pixel Watch, and a Tensor-powered tablet that may just end up sporting the "Pixel" brand name. One long-rumored member of the family — the Pixel foldable — was notably missing from the event, and as we're learning today, we might be waiting even longer than expected.
Few users are also reporting it on the stable version of Android 12
Google started rolling out the Android 12 QPR3 beta 3 updates to the Pixel 4 and newer Pixel phones early this month, ahead of June’s Feature Drop. It polished the battery widget experience and fixed some existing bugs in previous versions, including several issues that could hamper connectivity and call quality and an issue where some Pixel 6 Pro screens flashed a white line after waking up. However, some users with the software downloaded are now experiencing a Pixel Launcher bug that prevents them from searching for apps installed on their device.
You can have them for yourself, too, even if you don't have a Pixel
May is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month and while you probably won't come to know everything about the vast diaspora that runs through this country, it's definitely a worthwhile cause to support our AAPI communities. You can take part in the celebrations by putting on some lovely new wallpapers from Google's Curated Culture collection.
I don't want to wave my hands at my phone, but I do want to wave them at all of my smart speakers
The Pixel 4 was a better phone than a lot of people give it credit for. Yes, it was overpriced, and yes, battery life on the smaller model sucked — alright, maybe it wasn't a great phone, but it was at least a very cool one. It marked a number of firsts for Pixels: it was the first with a high-refresh rate display (at 90Hz), it was the first to offer multiple rear cameras, and it was the first (and thus far, only) Pixel to offer secure face unlock. It was also the first consumer product to feature . Its utility in the phone was... questionable, but I think a similar implementation in Nest speakers and displays could be a game-changer in how we interact with them.
After a rocky start, the Pixel 6 is back on track
The Pixel 6 has had a tumultuous early life. Unanimously praised in initial reviews for its price, performance, and photo prowess, wider use of the phone uncovered a number of serious bugs and other issues. To make matters worse, its first handful of updates arrived late — and some units missed December's update entirely. Problems have been far from universal, but for a time, they were common enough to dominate the conversation around the phone.
If you can't launch with it, might as well update
Back in 2019, the Pixel 4 debuted with a pretty elaborate face unlock system. For whatever reason, Google ended up rethink its approach to biometrics, and the 4a and 5 functioned with fingerprint sensors alone. The Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro came out in late 2021 and still, there was no sign that face unlock was returning. Following the discovery of some evidence suggesting there still might be ongoing work towards updating these phones with full face unlock support, a new report offers an insider look at the plan.
Riding the right-to-repair wave
In a strange twist, right-to-repair seems to be slowly catching up with smartphone makers who used to actively vilify it. Apple's Self Service program offers to make original iPhone parts available for people daring enough to fix their device at home, while Samsung recently followed suit with a similar program of its own. Now, Google is jumping on the bandwagon with a partnership with iFixit to provide original OEM parts to independent technicians.
It's a work in progress, though
Today is another milestone in the development of with the release of the second developer preview. Yes, it seems like we just had an Android release, but that was the unusual mid-season bump to 12L. Android 13 is the big update for 2022, and Google is adding even more privacy functionality. The new DP adds a Quick Settings shortcut to your privacy controls and security settings.
Colors and storage capacities, too
The long-rumored Pixel Watch and far less controversial Pixel 6a finally appear to be getting ready for their retail debut. Evidence of both devices has begun appearing in a US carrier's back-end inventory system. In addition to suggesting that a launch could be happening in the near future, we also pick up some insight into colors and storage options for both devices.
Upgrading Pixels can also get a boost
Phones and tablets launching with Android 13 may be able to load games faster than ever with a short boost in CPU speeds.
Material You is one a centerpiece of Android 12 on the Pixel phones, and that makes your choice of wallpaper more important than ever. Google offers a wide selection of backgrounds on Pixel phones, and the options have expanded today. Pixel owners will find three new images, courtesy of Daren Thomas Magee of Real Fun Wow.
A circular display without any bezel
Google's Pixel smartphones may not be a commercial success, but they help set a benchmark that other Android manufacturers should follow with their devices. While the big G also develops Wear OS, it has yet to launch a Pixel-branded wearable so far. A recent report revealed that this could change next year, as the company is working on "Rohan" — a first-party smartwatch running Wear OS 3. A new leak is giving the world its first look at the "Pixel Watch" by sharing some early marketing images.
All the deals, freebies, and trade-in offers
The Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro have been available for purchase for a couple of weeks now, but as with so many gadgets these days, they can be difficult to find. Even if you can spot some in stock, finding the right storefront to buy from is a challenge in and of itself — especially as retailers and carriers throw deals, bundles, and countless trade-in offers your way.
It's the most exciting release in a long time — if you have a Pixel phone
Google tweaked, tested, and experimented with Android 12 for about half a year before it went stable on Pixel phones, right when the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro launched. After all this work, you would imagine that the operating system is pretty stable now that it's live for everyone, but even on the brand-new Pixel 6 phones, we keep running into issues. Even though we initially published this review based on the latest beta release running on a Pixel 3, a lot of the problems mentioned still exists 1:1, with some new ones even popping up on the Pixel 6 phones which we've now finally got firmly in our hands.
Get your phone to take calls for you
Google seems to be the only smartphone company to care about really improving the call experience on phones. One of its most useful features, Call Screen, was limited to Pixel owners only in the US, Canada, and Japan. Fortunately, shortly after the Pixel 6 release, the company is bringing it to several other markets, including some countries in Europe.
Real Tone is meant to help you accurately photograph all skin tones
Inclusive technology is nothing short of critical today. How that technology is introduced plays an important part in its reception and the wider public acknowledgment of progress. Google's new advert relays the highly anticipated Real Tone camera capabilities of the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro, which are supposed to accurately represent all skin tones equally.