When Google decided to launch the affordable variant of its smartphones, it was said that the company wanted to focus on capturing the affordable flagship segment. This is where companies like OnePlus struck gold and were able to create a space for themselves.
As a result of this experiment with the Pixel 3a, Google got the perfect pricing with the Pixel 4a, which as a result was among the best-sold Pixel devices in India. However, Pixel 4 and Pixel 5 and the 4a 5G were never launched in the country.
Now the Pixel 5a – the successor of the Pixel 4a, is due to release in June this year, may showcase how ambitious and confident Google is with the Indian market. It has been reported that the company intends to double down the inventory for the Pixel 5a for India.
Further, Googles executive in his discussion has hinted that not only Google plans to increase the inventory in the Indian market but also plans to launch the Pixel 5a at a price point thats similar to its predecessor.
To achieve this pricing, Google could be looking to work on two different strategies. Firstly, the company may continue to skip 5G connectivity from the upcoming phone. Since the commercial deployment of 5G in India is still a year and a half away, it makes sense to use 4G chipsets to keep the price under control.
Even Xiaomi, which recently launched the 2021 variant of its Note series, also skipped 5G for a similar reason and thus ensured that it could offer the features that make more sense like a better display and better camera setup.
This also explains why the Pixel 4a 5G and Pixel 5 werent launched in India. The companys executive mentioned that, “Why do we want an expensive phone when Indians can’t use 5G. Because of hardware cost, 5G variants weren’t launched in India.”
The other possible way to keep the costs in check is by manufacturing locally. Inspired by the reception it got for iPhone 11, Apple has even started to make the iPhone 12 in India. One can expect Google to follow suit. By manufacturing in India, Google will not only be able to bring the costs down but will also be able to benefit from the PLI scheme floated by the Indian government.
That being said, Google is reportedly working on a couple of devices that include a foldable phone and a couple of standard Pixel device in a candy bar form factor.
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