Washington: Google on Wednesday released two new smartphones with 5G wireless capabilities with the Pixel trademark, showing off the Android mobile system, but with limited market share.
The California technology giant announced in a streaming media event that the new Pixel 5 will start at $699 for US customers, and the reduced price Pixel 4a with 5G will cost $499.
These phones will be on sale in the US and other markets starting October 15.
The new handsets are “packing more helpful Google features into phones backed by the power and speeds of 5G,” said Google vice president Brian Rakowski.
The announcement puts Google ahead of Apple in the 5G smartphone competition and is expected to launch a 5G iPhone in the next few weeks. As consumers began to seek upgrades, it also positioned Google as a competitively priced 5G device.
Google’s Pixel phones won praise for their powerful cameras and integrated artificial intelligence, but failed to reach the top of the smartphone market such as South Korea’s Samsung, Apple and China’s Huawei.
Nevertheless, the Pixel device can still be used as a showcase for Google and Android, integrating hardware and software as well as the latest Google applications.
“Google has pivoted its Pixel line from competing at the highest price points to offering more value, but the competition has intensified in the mid-tier market as well,” said Avi Greengart of the consultancy Techsponential.
“That leaves the Pixel 5 again trying to differentiate itself on its camera and software.”
The global smartphone market is struggling in the economic crisis triggered by the pandemic, and many consumers are waiting for the launch of 5G devices.
According to data from research firm IDC, total smartphone sales fell by 16% in the second quarter. According to its survey, Huawei is ahead of Samsung, Apple and Chinese companies Xiaomi and Oppo lead the market.
At the event on Wednesday, the company also announced an enhanced version of its Google TV platform, which can compete with Roku and Amazon’s Fire TV.
“The new Google TV experience brings together movies, shows, live TV and more from across your apps and subscriptions and organizes them just for you,” said Google TV senior director Shalini Govilpai.
According to the company, it also launched a new Nest Audio smart speaker that is 75% higher than its original smart speaker with the Google Home brand and has a 50% higher bass.