The Pixel 6a could apparently support a 90Hz display according to some sources. A technique to force the smartphone to display a higher refresh rate has reportedly been developed, but would not work on all models at this time.
It used to be one of his flaws, but might not be one day. Some Pixel 6a may now support a 90Hz display, but not through an official method. Google’s smartphone is one of the best smartphones under 500 euros, but unfortunately does not offer a screen with a high refresh rate.
However, users have already found a method to offer the screen of the smartphone at a refresh rate of 90 Hz using a new method which still requires a little technical know-how.
A hack that fills one of the major weaknesses of the smartphone
It is the account of @TheLunarixus which shows us the first proof, in images, of such an exploit on the device. According to this user, the screen used on the Pixel 6a even has the ability to support a display of up to 120Hz.
UFO test for those doubting pic.twitter.com/5CwrCEi1GJ
— Nathan (@TheLunarixus) August 10, 2022
This hack does not currently work on all models and does not yet work perfectly well. The change is achievable on the Pixel 6a, as it has a screen similar to the Pixel 6 which already supported a 90Hz display.
The technique is still under development at present. It would consist of installing modified display drivers on the smartphone so that the Pixel 6a starts to offer this new display mode natively via a dedicated button in the settings.
Could there be a bit of Pixel 6 in this Pixel 6a?
As said before, this trick would not work on all models. This is confirmed by Mishaal Rahman, former editor-in-chief of XDA Developers after having tried to carry out the maneuver himself. His screen then no longer displayed anything and seemed to receive the operation badly.
Okay, first of all, I couldn’t get my own Pixel 6a to run at 90Hz. The modified display driver that I installed by flashing the vendor_boot image provided by @TheLunarixus indeed exposed a new 2400×[email protected] display mode. The “Smooth display” option also got unlocked. pic.twitter.com/wAhJV9Ntsr
— Mishaal Rahman (@MishaalRahman) August 10, 2022
The account of @TheLunarixus had already carried out a similar hack before by installing drivers attributed to the Pixel 7 Pro on a Pixel 6 Pro in order to obtain an option that allows you to change the definition of the smartphone on Android 13.
It could be that some screens originally planned for the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro did not meet the level of requirements required for high-end models. Thus, in a logic of rationalization of production costs, it is not impossible that Google reused the tiles in question, but to integrate them into the Pixel 6a for which the criteria are easier to meet. This method is called hardware binning. This could explain why some lucky people manage to activate this option when others do not. Other explanations obviously remain to be considered.
A hack to refine
This hack is also not without fault and is still far from perfect. For example, it gives the screen a lower quality calibration and can cause display anomalies. However, these problems could be reduced as this solution is refined. However, we cannot recommend trying this technique.
Handling also requires unlocking the smartphone’s bootloader and breaking Google’s SafetyNet. Things that may not be to the liking of “normal” smartphone users. It would also be necessary to “flash” images that are not currently available in the smartphone system to complete the method. So many more reasons not to recommend you try it.
As it stands, we don’t yet know if this change will be able to be applied to all Pixel 6a models one day. Better not to expect too much. But the fact that such an option is already possible is already something very beneficial for hackers.
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