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The Pixel 6's translation tech includes real-time text conversations
- The Tensor chip in the Pixel 6 line enables a new Live Translate feature.
- This happens locally on the phone, and completely offline.
- English, French, German, Italian, and Japanese are currently supported.
One of the upgrades made possible by the custom Tensor processor in the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro is a Live Translate feature, good enough that it can enable natural conversations, Google claims.
One of the highlights of Tuesday’s Pixel event was an interview with clutter consultant Marie Kondo, who used a the Pixel 6 to translate queries in English to her native Japanese, then reply in kind. In more conventional use cases, Live Translate detects whether messages in apps like WhatsApp are in a supported foreign language, then offers a translation automatically.
Related: Google Pixel 6 Pro hands-on
Processing is handled on-device via the Private Compute Core, which means not just improved privacy, but the ability to work offline, Google says. The tradeoff is that Live Translate is currently restricted to English, French, German, Italian, and Japanese, leaving out major languages like Chinese and Hindi. Conventional interpretation is still possible in a total of 48 languages.
The Pixel 6 and 6 Pro are already up for pre-order, and will start shipping October 28. Both devices include the Tensor chip, and features like wide and ultra-wide cameras, the former with a colossal 50MP sensor. The Pro includes a 4x telephoto camera, however, and several other upgrades, such as more RAM, more battery, and a slightly bigger 6.7-inch display running up to 120Hz instead of 90Hz.