We’re about a month away from the Google I/O 2022 event and opening press conference. That’s where Google will launch Android 13 officially, alongside other software innovations. But that’s also where Google will unveil new hardware, with the Pixel 6a expected to show up at the event. The more affordable Pixel 6 variant should then hit stores sometime this summer, several months ahead of the Pixel 7 series. And if a Pixel 6a benchmark leak is accurate, the upcoming mid-range handset will be more exciting than its predecessors.
Is there going to be a Pixel 6a?
The first Pixel A-series device came in 2019. The Pixel 3a introduced a more affordable Pixel 3 experience.
Pixel A models were quite successful, and Google kept making new variants. While we have no official confirmation that a Pixel 6a is in the works for 2022, there’s no reason for Google to discontinue the mid-range series.
Moreover, we’ve seen plenty of Pixel 6a leaks so far, detailing the phone’s specs and features. Fans of the Pixel line surely know that Pixel rumors tend to be accurate. Google has never been able to prevent leaks, and the Pixel 6a is no different.
Even if Google can’t launch the Pixel 6a right after I/O 2022, it still makes sense to see it in stores this summer. And if a new Pixel 6a benchmark leak is true, the Pixel 6a will be Google’s most competitive mid-ranger to date.
The Pixel 6a will face off against iPhone SE 3 and Galaxy A53, mid-range devices from Apple and Samsung. And a specs leak back in November said the Pixel 6a will feature the same Google Tensor System-on-Chip (SoC) that powers the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro.
Now, a new leak seems to confirm that.
The Pixel 6a apparently just got its first Geekbench 5 score leak, seen below. The score seems to indicate that the phone will offer the same performance as the Pixel 6.
Moreover, the benchmark listing reveals the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6a will share an identical SoC. However, the Pixel 6a will sport just 6GB of RAM instead of 8GB.
While that’s the kind of compromise we expect from Google for a phone intended to undercut the Pixel 6’s $599 entry price, the Pixel 6a benchmark scores are great news for Pixel fans. They indicate Google is ready to use its best SoC inside mid-range phones.
That’s something we keep seeing with Apple’s iPhone SE phones. The current model runs on the same SoC as the iPhone 13, which means it’ll offer the same performance.
Google’s first-gen Tensor chip might not outperform the A15 Bionic in Apple’s latest iPhones. But it sure put up a great fight in a real-life speed test.
We will note that Google used the same Qualcomm Snapdragon 765 processor in the Pixel 5, Pixel 4a 5G, and Pixel 5a. However, that was a mid-range chip that effectively turned the “flagship” Pixel 5 into a disappointing mid-range phone.
This year, the Pixel 6a will deliver the same performance as the Pixel 6 — a true flagship phone — in a more affordable package. That alone should be a great reason to buy the Pixel 6a when it launches this summer.
More Pixel coverage: For more Pixel news, visit our Pixel 6 guide.