At the Google I/O 2022 event back in May, the company took the unusual decision to announce a product that wouldn’t arrive until 2023. The official unveiling of the Google Pixel Tablet was a ‘blink and you’ll miss it’ style announcement, with just a promo picture and no specs to speak of.
While Google has kept quiet about the Pixel Tablet ever since, developer detective work has indicated that we’re looking at a budget-to-mid-range device, with the same processor as the Pixel 6, less RAM than the Pixel 6a and the middling front-facing IMX355 sensor used on both sides of the tablet. That’s a bit disappointing for anyone looking for a Google solution to rival the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 and iPad Pro.
But this could actually only tell half the tale, according to 9to5Google’s latest code dive. Examining Google’s latest beta release of Android 13, the site found references to a device called “tangorpro”. Tangor is the codename for the Pixel Tablet, and it’s sometimes shortened to “t6” in the code — which also makes the occasional references to “t6pro” telling, too.
Given that Google has introduced Pro versions of both the Pixel 6 and Pixel Buds, the possibility of two tiers for its upcoming tablet shouldn’t be too surprising, but what the actual differences will be remains largely unknown.
There’s only one hardware difference that 9to5Google has been able to glean so far: a different rear camera sensor. Unfortunately, the site can’t say what’s being used instead, only that it won’t be the IMX355 used on the regular tablet.
Other than that, it’s pure speculation. It could be purely cosmetic, with more premium materials used for the shell, or perhaps the Pro version could embrace a faster Tensor chip? Maybe the screen will be higher resolution, and it’ll pack more RAM? It could be any combination of these things, and we’ll just have to wait for confirmation from Google — if this advanced version ever does arrive in consumer's hands.
We may find out a little more soon: Google has an event scheduled for October 6. And while the company has already explicitly stated that this is for the Pixel 7 phones, Pixel Watch and “additions to the Nest smart home portfolio”, you wouldn’t put it past Google to give us an update on the Pixel Tablet. Especially when there’s a chance that the device will double up as a Nest Hub.
Make a more powerful tablet processor that can run high-end Apps. Stop using smartphone SoCs.
Get developers to make more powerful Apps. It’s great Google is making their own Apps better on tablets and is working with developers, but getting Zoom TikTok or Facebook optimized isn’t “Pro”. Where’s Photoshop? Or LumaFusion (which was announced in Feb)?