Google Pixel 5
Google Pixel 5 (Image only for representation)

When Google launched the Pixel 5 last year, a lot of questions were asked about the strategy of not going with a flagship chip and settling for the mid-range Qualcomm Snapdragon 7y65G SoC. Although it is a fairly capable processor – and I can attest to it after having used the OnePlus Nord and LG Velvet – the Pixel 5 oddly returned some sub-par results in synthetic GPU performance tests. Well, it appears that the April security update that Google started rolling out yesterday has fixed that issue.

Andrei Frumusanu from AnandTech, who extensively benchmarked the Pixel 5 in January, noted in a tweet that the ‘performance has been essentially doubled’ and is now in line, or even better, than a few other phones with the same Snapdragon 765G SoC inside. While it comes a sigh of relief for Pixel 5 owners who experienced the performance bottleneck, it is surprising – and disappointing – to see that it took Google so long to fix the issue on its top-of-the-line phone.

Talking about the sub-par benchmark scores of the Pixel 5, here’s what Andrei originally wrote in his article:

“I’m not exactly sure what Google has done here to the Snapdragon 765, but something is definitely very different compared to other devices employing the same chipset. The Pixel 5 here posts significantly lower performance than a comparable LG Velvet or an OPPO Reno3 Pro 5G, with some of the scores even coming in at half performance.”
Andrei went on to add that the gaming performance on the Pixel 5 was ‘just horrible’ and that playing a modern AAA game like Genshin Impact was a ‘horrendous’ experience. And that even when the graphics presets were set to the lowest, the gaming experience was not up to the mark. Where the Pixel lacked in raw power, it made up for it with its clean software that frequently gets new features and a reliable pair of cameras.
However, the camera hardware is not as versatile as rival phones in the same price bracket, and competitors like Apple and Google are really closing in on the signature ‘Pixel camera superiority’ – if that is even a thing. Google is following in the footsteps of Apple and is reportedly going to equip the upcoming Pixel 6 with a self-designed chip made in collaboration with Samsung. It remains to be seen whether Google can outperform Qualcomm and achieve the same level of hardware-software harmony as iPhones.

I’ve been writing about consumer technology for over three years now, having worked with names such as NDTV and Beebom in the past. Aside from covering the latest news, I’ve reviewed my fair share of devices ranging from smartphones and laptops to smart home devices. I also have interviewed tech execs and appeared as a host in YouTube videos talking about the latest and greatest gadgets out there.

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