Google’s Pixel 6 Japanese ad campaign is quirky and gorgeous

Let’s hope Google pulls out all the stops for the upcoming Pixel 6a

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in October 2021, shortly before Google announced its Pixel 6-series flagships. The Pixel 6 Pro is Google’s most ambitious phone to date, but it got off to a very rocky start. And with the recent Pixel 6a announcement, we’re curious to see how will Google market its mid-range offering around the globe. If this understated and unconvential Japanese ad campaign for the Pixel 6 is any indicator, we have a lot to look forward to.

It’s officially October, which means we’re likely just days away from the long-awaited launch of the Pixel 6. Google has spent the last two months teasing the phone, offering an early reveal before slowly showing off the phone in ads and in- person displays exclusive to New York City. A new ad airing in Japan is our latest hint for what’s to come, with a deep focus on how material you will enhance your experience.

ANDROIDPOLICE VIDEO OF THE DAY

This video isn’t the first time we’ve seen Google show off its next flagship device in a Japanese ad, though it’s certainly more revealing than last time. The video demonstrates how users can customize their home screens to fit their personality, whether they’re artists, bakers, or anything else (via 9to5Google).

It’s that first setup that’s the most interesting, though. We’ve seen Google show off an X-shaped widget before for Drive, but this is the first time we’ve seen it for playback controls. It shows up again in a later slide, highlighting photo memories of a family. Unlike music controls, this widget seems like an odd shape for images, so it’d be surprising to see this arrive down the road.


The end of the advertisement does show off a more traditional music widget, so these may never leave a design phase. Still, it’s some unique looks at what could be coming in the future for both material You and the Pixel 6.

Along with those weird X-shaped widgets, we’re also getting new looks at the upcoming weather redesign, as well as that new clock widget with a new built-in date. All told, it seems like home screen designs are about to get interesting again.

What’s next for Google?

Although the Pixel 6a and Pixel Watch stole the show at Google I/O 2022, the event was more subdued than in years past. The company’s vision of the future is more modest and focused. There was less flash and more utility: we can’t help but wonder if that pragmatism is the result of a protracted pandemic, changes in the global supply chain, or the challenges it faced with the Pixel 6? Perhaps its a little bit of each, or possibly none of them at all.



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