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Google leaked its own Pixel 6 secrets in a new Android 12 beta release

Updated Aug 24th, 2021 11:05AM EDT
Pixel 6 Camera
Image: Google

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Google unveiled the Pixel 6 a few days ago, shocking fans with the unexpected reveal. The Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro leaked in recent months, just like their predecessors. We knew that Google had a new design in store for the 2021 Pixel phone. Leaks also said that the new Pixel series will be the first one to rock a custom Google chip and a triple-lens camera. Google confirmed all that a few days ago, stopping short of painting a complete picture of the Pixel 6 series. The full set of specs, prices, and release date will be announced in the fall during a press conference. But the leaks will not stop just because Google made a preliminary announcement. A brand new Pixel 6 camera discovery in Android 12 reveals a few more secrets.

The Pixel 6 will mark a close collaboration between Google and Samsung. The South Korean giant is reportedly manufacturing the custom Tensor chip for Google. OLED panels for both Pixel phones are also likely to come from Samsung. The company will not stop there when it comes to providing parts for the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro devices.

The latest Android 12 beta release indicates that Samsung will also supply the primary camera for the Pixel 6 series, as well as the 5G modem.

The Pixel 6 camera

Google released the fourth beta of Android 12 on Wednesday, reaching the Platform Stability milestone. Xda-developers explains that the purpose of the release is to provide developers finalized APIs and app-facing behaviors so they can prepare their apps for the stable release. Android 12 Beta 4 also includes updates to several Google apps. It’s in these apps that the new Pixel 6 secrets reside.

The new Google Camera app for Pixel phones contains references to the Pixel 6’s main camera. That’s the wide-angle camera that will equip both the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro. According to the app, the wide-angle camera will be Samsung’s 50-megapixel Isocell GN1 sensor.

Samsung announced the camera last year along with support for faster Dual Pixel autofocus. Previous reports said that Google would use a 50-megapixel sensor for the Pixel 6 line. The new finding seems to confirm it.

The Samsung modem

The same developer who found the Pixel 6 main camera details inside Android 12 beta 4 also discovered that Google will use a Samsung modem. That’s the Exynos 5123, which is mapped to multiple devices. The code identifying these devices is encrypted. But the developer who found them was able to decrypt the information. The Exynos 5123 might come to five Google devices, with codenames including Oriole, Raven, Passport, and Slider. There is also a fifth unknown device.

Oriole and Raven are the codenames for the Pixel 6 and the Pixel 6 Pro. Passport is the rumored codename for the first foldable Pixel handsets.

While Pixel rumors are often accurate, there’s no way to confirm at this time that the Pixel 6 camera and 5G modem will both come from Samsung. Since this information comes from Google’s own software, however, it’s likely to be accurate.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.