Google CEO Sundar Pichai gives keynote speech at the September 29 new product event held in San Francisco, CA.
Google's biggest phone just got a bit smaller. On stage in San Francisco this morning, Google unveiled the Nexus 6P, a new version of its Nexus 6 smartphone with a slightly smaller 5.7-inch display and a completely new design. The phone is only 7.3mm thick and is supposed to be about the same overall size as the iPhone 6 Plus — that means it's fitting a slightly bigger screen into a body of about the same size. That screen, a WQHD AMOLED display, actually makes up nearly three quarters of the front of the device. Google used the event to announced the Nexus 5X, too.
Google is calling the Nexus 6P its "most premium phone yet." That's for a lot reasons. It's the first Nexus with an all-metal body. It includes two front-facing speakers. And it also has a fingerprint sensor on the back, placed where Google expects you to rest your finger while holding it. All you need to do is tap on the sensor with your finger, and the phone will wake up and unlock. It can also be used to authorize payments through Android Pay or in the Play Store.
But the really standout feature on the Nexus 6P, at least as Google tells it, is its camera. You'll notice that the 6P has a pretty large camera on its back, and that's because it's hiding away a 12.3-megapixel Sony sensor that features larger pixels than what you'll find on most smartphones, including the iPhone. That should allow the phone to take better photos in low-light, and that's basically what Google is saying. The camera is supposed to be optimized for indoor photography; it also features slow-motion video, 4K video, and burst mode for photos. An 8-megapixel camera is on the front.
The Nexus 6P is also switching over to USB Type-C for charging. The new reversible cable is starting to spread throughout the tech industry, and Google officially adds support for it in Marshmallow, the new version of Android that's shipping on this phone. Google says that the Nexus 6P also supports fast charging, allowing it to charge twice as fast as an iPhone 6 Plus.
Though Google didn't mention it up on stage, the Nexus 6P has some high-end internals. As mentioned by Wired, the phone has a Snapdragon 810 processor and 3GB of RAM. It also includes a large 3450mAh battery.
Preorders for the Nexus 6P begin today, with device shipments beginning in late October. Pricing starts at $499 for a 32GB model, and rises up to $549 for a 64GB model and $649 for a 128GB model. It'll be available in white, silver, and black. The phone is also unlocked and supposed to work across "major carriers" — though Google didn't name explicitly which ones. Naturally, it'll work on Google's Project Fi network, too. Finally, Google is introducing an extended warranty for Nexus phones. For the Nexus 6P, it'll cost $89 and add provide two years of coverage for mechanical breakdowns and accidental damage.
Google first introduced the Nexus 6 last year in partnership with Motorola. This year, it's working with Huawei instead, which is why the Nexus 6P looks like a brand new phone, rather than a continuation of the design we saw on the original Nexus 6. It's an important move for Huawei, which has been struggling to make inroads into the US, in part due to the country's fears over Chinese spying. Google may also benefit by befriending a Chinese phone maker, as it begins to slowly reestablish itself in what's quickly becoming an enormous technology market for its competitors.
COMMENTARY: At today's Google new product event in San Francisco it announced the Nexus 5X and Nexus 6P, succeeding the Nexus 5 and Nexus 6 respectively. Google’s seventh-generation phones are now official.
Nexus 5 vs Nexus 5X Side-by-Side Technical Specifications Comparison
Nexus 6 vs Nexus 6P Side-by-Side Technical Specifications Comparison