Pixel 6 and 6 Pro’s Face Unlock feature didn’t make it to launch, but there’s still hope
In the weeks leading up to the Pixel 6 series launch, we learned quite a bit about Google’s latest flagship devices. Leaks showcased their design, confirmed the hardware specifications, and even highlighted some of the new software features of the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro. While most of these leaks were accurate, leaks suggesting that the Pixel 6 series would feature Face Unlock turned out to be false when Google lifted the covers off the devices last month. However, new findings suggest that Google planned to launch the devices with Face Unlock, and the company may still release it via an upcoming feature drop.
As mentioned earlier, we had spotted several mentions of Face Unlock on the Pixel 6 series ahead of the launch. In fact, we even saw leaked marketing images of the devices with a clear mention of Face Unlock on the security page. However, Google didn’t talk about it during the launch event, and the devices launched without the feature. As it turns out, Google planned on offering Face Unlock on the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro but decided on removing it at the last moment.
On July 9th a change was commited to the pixel 6´s powerhal config file for “face unlock”.
Apparently google is calling the feature “Tuscany” in this commit.
There might still be hope the feature will surface in the next feature drop.
— Mile (@mile_freak07) November 10, 2021
XDA Recognized Developer Freak07 has found evidence pointing towards Face Unlock support on the Pixel 6. In a recent string of tweets, they revealed that Google introduced a code change to the Pixel 6’s PowerHAL config file on July 9th. Its description suggests that Google internally called the Face Unlock feature “Tuscany,” and was working to improve its impact on the battery by boosting the CPU clusters for a more precise time window.
Although it isn’t clear why Google chose to drop the feature before the launch, the fact that it hasn’t removed all evidence from the source suggests that Face Unlock could make its way to the Pixel 6 series in the future. We speculate that the company faced some critical issues with Face Unlock before the launch and postponed/canceled its release. If that’s the case, Google could release it via a Pixel Feature Drop in the future.