Google Pixel 6 rumor says it will get 4 years of Android updates

Google Pixel 6
(Image credit: Google)

The Google Pixel 6 is coming next week - expect it on October 19 at the company's Pixel launch - and a new leak suggests the upcoming phone will be supported with new software for many years to come.

According to @_snoopytech_ on Twitter, the Google Pixel 6 series will recieve four years of software upgrades and five years of security updates. That means it will be able to run Android 16 software, or whatever Google decides to call it.

Android 12, the company's latest update, is set to be available on the Google Pixel 3 and above. That phone was released in 2018, so this will be its third year of software upgrades, and it's uncertain whether the Pixel 3 series will get Android 13.

If this four years of updates for the Pixel 6 is true, it would be a remarkable step up for software updates from the company. If it's something Google intends to do, we may hear the company promise it during the Pixel 6 launch itself.

We've seen Snoopy get information on the Fitbit Charge 5 and Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 alongside other gadgets correct in the past. The source has little history with Pixel leaks, but their reliable track record on other subjects leads us to believe this could be accurate.

Analysis: A big step, but doesn't match iOS

Android updates are notoriously bad at making their way to older smartphones, and this change from Google is a positive step in the right direction. However, it doesn't compare to Apple and its iOS rollouts.

iOS 15 was released last month, and if you own 2015's iPhone 6S you're still supported by the update. That's a period of six years of consistent and useful updates to your handset.

If you own an Android phone, you won't find support anywhere near that long. If the Google Pixel 6 is promised to come with four years of updates, that'll be a major step forward from the company.

That's still only for Pixel devices though, and for modern ones at that. If you own an Android phone from an alternative brand, you may find you'll only get one or two updates before your phone is left behind.

James Peckham

James is the Editor-in-Chief at Android Police. Previously, he was Senior Phones Editor for TechRadar, and he has covered smartphones and the mobile space for the best part of a decade bringing you news on all the big announcements from top manufacturers making mobile phones and other portable gadgets. James is often testing out and reviewing the latest and greatest mobile phones, smartwatches, tablets, virtual reality headsets, fitness trackers and more. He once fell over.