Google Pixel 6 updates are still a problem, despite the company switching from Qualcomm to its own Tensor chip with the Pixel 6 series. While the new Pixel phones will get at least 5 years of security updates, they’re still guaranteed only 3 major Android updates.
This is disappointing as the Pixel 6 phones come with Google’s Tensor which is its custom silicon. Google phones with Qualcomm Snapdragon chips also get 3 major updates. The switch to custom silicon should’ve brought Google closer to the 5-update cycle of the iPhone.
While Google Pixel 6 updates promise 5 years of security patches, it cleverly excluded the major update cycle from the blog. We confirmed it through the Pixel support page. Google Tensor is a photography-focused SoC that gives us some amazing Pixel 6 camera features. However, the same magic has unfortunately failed to turn into updates.
No Reason, But No Fix Either
Less than a week ago, Qualcomm put out the above tweet about companies making their own chipsets. The tweet saw flak from Twitterati, bashing Qualcomm for making chips that limit Android device manufacturers to 3 major updates only. With the Tensor chip, we were expecting the Google Pixel 6 updates to surpass the 3 year-cycle.
One reason we can think why Google was limited to 3 major updates is Android’s large leaps. Android 12 is a major upgrade from its predecessor and comes with some neat new features. Android devices have a history of slowing down over updates due to varied hardware, which renders this reason invalid when it comes to Pixel 6.
So there’s practically no reason why Google couldn’t promise more than 3 updates on the Pixel 6. But still, it is what it is, and for now, it is a disappointment.