The Pixel 4a should probably have launched at Google I/O in May, but since that event’s cancellation Google has stalled the announcement, potentially due to Covid-19 but it may transpire also in reaction to Apple’s $399 iPhone SE that beat the 4a to market.
Google might be ensuring the 4a can launch competitively, though its decidedly mid-range Snapdragon 730 chip will belie its mid-tier specs.
It is now thought, thanks to a neat summary in 9to5Google, that a larger Pixel 4a 5G will be announced too. The image above leaked last week from xleaks7 and Pigtou credited as a potential Pixel 5 XL, but it’s more likely to be the Pixel 4a 5G.
In fact, rumours suggest that 2020 will not see an ‘XL’ Pixel at all, even though the 4a 5G will be larger than the 4a and might have two cameras instead of one. It’ll also need a 5G-ready chipset, most likely the Snapdragon 765G
The third piece of this very confusing puzzle is the Pixel 5, said to be under ‘flagship’ specs but will somehow have to have more features than either Pixel 4a device to make it seem next-gen but also worthy of its likely higher price.
If Google does end up releasing the Pixel 4a, 4a 5G and Pixel 5 at the same time it’ll be confusing for many given the launch of three phones with two generations of numbering. But to the more casual phone-buying public, it’ll hopefully present three great Android phones at reasonable prices.
We hope it represents a shift in strategy for Google, who may be signalling a slow return to the better-priced Nexus days rather than sticking with the high-end Pixels of the last couple of years.