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Rumored Rare Update for Tensor-Powered Pixels Imminent

The Kernel is the core program used on Android devices to run the CPU, manage memory, act as the liaison between software and hardware, control system resources, and more. If your Android phone uses a kernel that is dated, its performance might lag and the device might not be as secure as you’d like or want it to be. According to a tweet posted on “X” by Android expert Mishaal Rahman (via AndroidPolice), Google is rumored to be considering a very rare “major kernel upgrade” to all Tensor-powered Pixel phones.

This would include all Pixel models from 2021’s Pixel 6 series through this year’s Pixel 9 series after the new models are released, most likely, during October. Comments left by Google engineers on the Android Open Source Project (AOSP) site indicate that current Tensor-powered Pixels will get an update to Linux kernel 6.1. Pixels powered by the Tensor G1 and G2 application processors (AP) currently run on Linux kernel 5.10, while Tensor G3 Pixels run on Linux 5.15.

The Tensor G4 SoC expected to power the Pixel 9 series will also feature Linux kernel 5.15 and will also be updated to 6.10. No time frame for the update has been mentioned and the only thing expected is that a Linux kernel update would come alongside an OS update. Android owners would be encouraged to install said update since it would allow the performance of their Android phones to keep pace performance-wise, and allow the phones to continue receiving support from Google.

The Pixel 9 series could include a new member, a smaller-screened version of the Pixel 9 Pro which has a rumored code name of “caiman.” The unnamed device would carry a 6.3-inch display and would fit into the Pixel lineup similar to the way that the iPhone 15 Pro helps make up the iPhone 15 series.

The first Google customized Tensor chip is expected to be the Tensor G5 SoC which will be found in the Pixel 10 line in 2025. The chip will reportedly be manufactured by TSMC using its 3nm process node.

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