If you want a more affordable phone with near stock-Android software, there are Android One phones like the Xiaomi Mi A1 and Moto X4. But soon there may be another option: a Google Pixel with a mid-range price tag.
Google is launching its Google Home line of smart speakers in India this week, but The Economic Times of India reports that Google also plans to bring other products including its Pixelbook laptop to India soon.
The publication also cites “senior industry executives” that claim Google is working on a mid-range Pixel phone for “price-sensitive markets such as India.” The company is said to be planning to launch that phone in July or August, with a new high-end/flagship Pixel phone coming in November.
There aren’t any details about what a mid-range Pixel would look like. It’d almost certainly include Google’s software stack including a Pixel launcher and Google camera app along with core apps such as Gmail, Assistant, Chrome, Google Maps, and YouTube. But it remains to be seen if it’d have the high-quality camera, ample memory and storage, or high-resolution display found in Google’s premium phones.
It’s also unclear if a mid-range Pixel would be exclusive to price-sensitive markets or if Google would also offer it in developer markets like the US and Europe. Doing so could eat into sales for the company’s higher-priced hardware… but it’s not like Pixel sales currently have Samsung or Apple quaking in their boots. There’s plenty of room for Google to grow its smartphone hardware business.
Then again, this is all pretty much just rumor and speculation at this point. Google hasn’t officially confirmed that it’s working on a mid-range Pixel and it’s possible that the sources cited by the Economic Times report are wrong or that their comments were misinterpreted.
Still, I have to admit that I’m curious to know what a more reasonably priced Pixel phone would look like.