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iPhone 13 vs Pixel 6 (2021): Which Flagship Model Should You Upgrade To?

The new Apple iPhone 13 has everyone’s attention right now but it’s going to have to share the spotlight soon because the Google Pixel 6 is set to arrive in October. And once it does, it will be a tough battle between these two flagship smartphones because they’ve both received amazing upgrades. Their photography capabilities are particularly impressive in comparison to their predecessors’. To make the decision process a little bit easier for you, here’s an in-depth iPhone 13 vs Pixel 6 comparison, covering their design, camera hardware, performance, and battery life.

iPhone 13 vs Pixel 6 Comparison Chart

ModeliPhone 13Pixel 6
 Apple iPhone 13 (128GB, Pink) [Locked] + Carrier SubscriptionPixel 6 chart
PriceCheck PriceTo be updated
Display 6.1-inch OLED6.4-inch OLED
Maximum Refresh Rate60Hz90Hz
Cameras12MP main camera, 12MP ultra-wide camera, 12MP front camera50MP main camera, 12MP ultra-wide camera
ProcessorA15 Bionic chipTensor chip
Storage Space128GB, 256GB, 512GB128GB

Design and Display

The Pixel 6 has a larger screen and higher refresh rate than the iPhone 13.

Pixel 6 vs iPhone 13 design
Both the Pixel 6 (left) and the iPhone 13 (right) have OLED screens.

Pixel phones are known to be quite utilitarian, usually sporting simple all-black designs. Which is why the new Pixel 6 comes as quite a polarizing surprise. Not only has Google ditched the minimalist look for a tri-color design but it has also given the new model a large and very noticeable camera bar that spans the width of the phone’s back. It’s definitely a bolder look which can either come across as a refreshing upgrade or an unwelcome change. As for the iPhone 13, its design is quite anticlimactic as it looks nearly identical to its predecessor, save for the thinner notch and the new pink color version.

As for their displays, the Pixel 6 is able to pull ahead of its competitor. Not only does it have a slightly bigger screen but its tiny punch-hole front camera is less distracting than the iPhone 13’s larger Face ID. Apple already cut back on its size by 20% though which is a commendable improvement. To top things off, the Pixel 6 has a higher refresh rate of 90Hz while the iPhone 13 is stuck at the basic 60Hz. When it comes to their actual screens, however, these two models are at par with each other. Both are equipped with OLED screens which means deep blacks, impressive contrast, and excellent viewing angles.

Camera

Both the Pixel 6 and the iPhone 13 have been equipped with new camera sensors.

Pixel 6 vs iPhone 13 camera
Both the Pixel 6 (left) and the iPhone 13 (right) are able to perform better in low light conditions.

Apple and Google are both recognized as leaders in mobile photography and their latest smartphone models serve as proof of this. With the Pixel 6, you get a 50MP main camera as well as a 12MP ultra-wide camera. In addition, Sony has given it a new sensor that has never been put in a Pixel phone before. Not only does this enhance the Pixel 6’s performance in low light but it will also be able to capture moving objects much better and deliver more high-quality HDR videos. All of these upgrades are complemented by Google’s powerful AI features as well as Pixel’s outstanding core shooting modes such as astrophotography and night mode.

As for the iPhone 13, it’s equipped with a 12MP main and ultra-wide camera. And similarly to the Pixel 6, it has also been given a new sensor which is the biggest one that has ever been put in an iPhone. This lets around 47% more light, which allows for much better performance in dim lighting conditions. In addition, the iPhone 12 Pro Max’s sensor-shift optical image stabilization has been passed down to it which further enhances image quality. To top things off, the iPhone 13 has a bunch of new tricks up its sleeves such as cinematic mode. This feature blurs the background of your videos in real time while keeping the subject in focus.

While both the Pixel 6 and the iPhone 13 were both given commendable camera hardware upgrades, neither of them has a zoom lens. This is a common drawback with many compact smartphones on the market.

Performance

The iPhone 13 outperforms the Pixel with its new A15 Bionic chip.

Pixel 6 vs iPhone 13 performance
The Pixel 6 will be powered by Google’s very first proprietary mobile processor.

The iPhone 12 is already quite the powerhouse in its own right but you can expect the iPhone 13 to be even more impressive performance-wise. Powered by the A15 Bionic chip, the iPhone 13 is the fastest smartphone you can get your hands on, trumping all Android models that are currently available.

While Apple has always been known for producing their own mobile chips, this isn’t the case for Google. Which is why it comes as quite a shock that they’re equipping the Pixel 6 with the first ever Google-made mobile processor. Called the Tensor, it replaces the Qualcomm Snapdragon processors that have been used for all the Pixel phones so far. Rumors have it, however, that the new Tensor chip won’t be able to outperform the Snapdragon 888 but will instead be around the same level as the Snapdragon 870. But we can still expect exciting things as the Tensor chip is aimed towards AI performance.

As for 5G connectivity, it has been said that the Pixel 6 will be using Samsung’s 5G modem. The iPhone 13, on the other hand, will be compatible with over 200 carriers in 60 countries by the end of this year as per Apple.

Battery and Cooling

The iPhone 13’s upgraded battery is likely to last longer than the Pixel 6’s.

Pixel 6 vs iPhone 13 battery
The iPhone 13’s battery is bigger than its predecessor’s.

While Apple didn’t divulge the exact size of the battery they put in the iPhone 13, they did say that it’s bigger than the iPhone 12’s. With this upgrade, you should be able to enjoy an additional 2.5 hours of usage on the iPhone 13 per charge. However, charging speeds are the same whether it be via the 20W wired charging or the 15W MagSafe wireless charging.

While it hasn’t been confirmed yet, it’s possible that the Pixel 6 will have a 4,614mAh battery. If this is true, the Pixel 6 will have a major endurance boost compared to the Pixel 5. It’s unlikely that it can outdo the iPhone 13 though because the Apple iOS is known for its efficient battery optimization.

Verdict

The iPhone 13 will be a tough act to follow for the Pixel 6.

The battle between the Apple iPhone 13 and the Google Pixel 6 will only become a reality once the latter hits the stores this coming October. But it’s safe to say for now that the iPhone 13 is one tough act to follow given all of the upgrades it has received. The biggest advantage it has over the Pixel 6 is its new A15 Bionic chip which gives it unparalleled speed and performance. While the Pixel 6’s new Tensor chip is exciting, it doesn’t seem to stand a chance against the iPhone 13’s mighty processor.

If you’re wondering how the iPhone 13 fares against its predecessor, you can check out our iPhone 13 vs 12 comparison.

FAQs

📌 When is the release date of the Google Pixel 6?

While the details have not been confirmed yet, it’s possible that the Pixel 6 will be hitting stores on October 28, 2021.

📌 When is the release date of the Apple iPhone 13?

The iPhone 13 hits stores on September 24, 2021 along with the other iPhone 13 models in the new lineup.

📌 How much is the Apple iPhone 13?

The iPhone 13 models have the same starting prices as their iPhone 12 counterparts, with the regular iPhone 13 set at $799.

📌 Is the Apple iPhone 13 worth it?

Apple did a great job of packing the new iPhone 13 with lots of impressive upgrades. Storage options are much bigger, the processor is more advanced and powerful, the camera hardware is more capable in low light, and battery life is more dependable. This makes it a worthy successor to the iPhone 12.

Last update on 2021-07-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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Denise Jose

Senior Editor at Compare Before Buying. Researcher and yoga teacher passionate about article writing, photography, wellness, and mindfulness.