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Google’s Pixel 6 problems are creating a crisis in trust

Google’s Pixel 6 is an excellent smartphone, one of the best Google has ever made. It fixes up issues we’ve seen in older Pixels, from outdated and weak hardware to boring designs. All things considered, it’s great — and our reviews say so. At the same time, the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro have come…

Google’s Pixel 6 smartphone is an exceptional phone, one of the most impressive Google has made. It addresses issues that we have seen with older Pixels, such as outdated hardware and boring designs. All things considered, it’s great — and our reviews say so. The Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro are still under attack from critics and enthusiasts alike. Over on the r/GooglePixel subreddit, there are many who would chafe at the idea of someone having a good experience with the Pixel 6, while prominent reviewers like Marques Brownlee (MKBHD) back them up.

From where I am, the Pixel 6 is not a bad phone. Reviews and personal experiences are consistent with this conclusion. Andy Boxall, my colleague, offers a more measured view of the issue from a user’s perspective. It’s a great phone and does exactly what it claims. I have very few complaints.

The rear panel of the Google Pixel 6.
Google Pixel 6. Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

“It’s certainly possible that Google is having widespread quality control problems, but it isn’t something I have seen directly (anecdotally, my Pixel 6 review units have been fine),” Avi Greengart, from Techsponential, told Digital Trends over email. The Pixel 6 may be bulletproof, but it must compete with an Apple and Samsung market, as well as low-cost Chinese brands .”

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But these bugs, network issues and battery draining most prominently, do exist and have been documented and reviewed by increasing numbers of users and reviewers. If not addressed quickly, this will be a problem for Google.

Updates can still turn things around

The under-display fingerprint scanner of the Google Pixel 6.
Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

It’s not just Pixel phones that are having a rough time, but Android 12 phones in general. The Verge attributes this to a mixture of the new platform and the tight deadlines engineers face. They may be right — we already know Google is working on Android 12L and Android 13 as we speak.

The company’s December update, which was purported to fix many of these issues, now has a tentative January 17 release date. Although it might not be getting the most word-of mouth coverage, Google is known for its ability to quickly fix software bugs. The majority of issues with Pixel 6 are software-related.

The Pixel 6 is an important phone for Google and Android in many ways. It is clear that the company knows it cannot just make a bunch of announcements about revamps before they sound hollow. This was evident with its attempts to integrate messaging apps. Google still has the chance to change the public’s perception of the Pixel 6 Pro and Pixel 6 Pro if it can smoothen out these rough edges quickly and send out a message that resonates well with customers, both those who are happy and those who feel burnt.

” It is still early to see how consumers will accept (or reject) the device. Marta Pinto, senior research manager at IDC, said via email that the device has only been available for a short time. “[The] Pixel 6 series represents a significant leap over previous Google Pixel iterations, and is not simply another update. It is a departure from the past, both in design and in terms of the components. This opens up a new future for Google Pixel devices. It is the first “true” flagship and a learning device in many ways. Not only in terms customer acceptance but also in marketing and product positioning. Google now aims to compete with other players like OnePlus, Samsung, and Apple.

It’s more than just Google’s skin. Pinto claims that the manufacturer would make the Pixel 6 a win for its carrier partners. This would allow them to offer a better choice in high-end markets and help break down the Apple/Samsung duopoly. There may be second-order effects if the success of the Pixel 6 is achieved.

The Pixel 6’s choice of processor, for example, would free up Qualcomm chips for other Android brands and help avoid the chip shortages that occurred last year. “Even though this isn’t a big-ticket product, it’s a first true flagship Google Pixel device. It’s a new era in Pixel devices and there will be no turning back. The new features won’t be reduced, they are already being used by other Android brands and the innovation won’t stop. Pinto said that this will depend on marketing and ongoing work by Google and partners to sell the new device to consumers.”

Much ado about nothing?

It’s worth stressing ag

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