Google Pixel 5a Review – Price, Release Date, and More
The Google Pixel 5a 5G may only be coming to the US and Japan, leaving in question whether it’s coming to other regions – and if there will be a 4G LTE version.
It’s still early to form a cohesive idea of what Google’s next affordable smartphone will be – the Pixel 4a inherited from the Google Pixel 4; to get an idea of the Pixel 5a, we’ll have to use the Pixel 5 for a while to get a good glimpse at the future. The latter was a step back in terms of features as a more affordable flagship.
Until we hear more, we can look at what the Pixel 4a didn’t incorporate and list which features we would be genuinely excited to see in its successor. Read on for the few rumours we’ve already heard we want to see in the Pixel 5a.
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Google Pixel 5a Price and Release Date
The Google Pixel 5a release date hasn’t announced, but the Google IO 2021 dates have, and the Pixel 5a will likely be in attendance.
Google IO 2021 will run from May 18-20 as an online-only event, so those dates are our best guess for the launch window of the Google Pixel 5a.
That said, there’s no guarantee of this, with one earlier leak saying the Google Pixel 5a will launch on June 11. Plus, the Google Pixel 4a don’t announce until August 2020. That was later than expected and was probably a delay caused by the pandemic, but even so, it’s possible that the Pixel 5a would land in or around August of 2021 to leave a year’s gap between them.
It’s also unclear if the Pixel 5a will have a global launch – after rumours that it cancel outright started cropping up.
Google confirmed that the Pixel 5a 5G is coming to the US and Japan but didn’t state if it’s coming elsewhere or if there would be a 4G LTE version of the Pixel 5a.
As for the price, the Google Pixel 3a, the first mid-range phone in the series, was released at $399 / £399 / AU$649. The Pixel 4a went even lower, costing $349 / £349 / AU$599 at launch.
While the cost could go higher – mainly if 5G include, and we expect the upcoming Pixel 4a 5G to be pricier – we wouldn’t expect it to drop any lower. But we have been wrong before.
Google Pixel 5a News and Rumors
The first rumour we heard is that the Google Pixel 5a exists. Really!
A supposedly official document listed the Pixel 5a by name, along with codenames for what we expect is future Pixel phones.
It includes the Google Pixel 6 and 6 XL and what could be the rumoured Google foldable phone.
We’ve seen a second info dump, but it tells us of even fewer new features than the first rumours.
According to renders and feature leaks, the Google Pixel 5a will be near-identical to the Pixel 4a 5G with the same design, screen specs and cameras.
Google likely wouldn’t put out the same phone twice, though, so presumably, there’s more we have to learn.
For one thing, it might have a new chipset. More specifically, it might have the Snapdragon 780G chipset that’s made its debut in the Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite 5G.
This is the successor to the Snapdragon 765G in the Pixel 4a 5G, and it offers up to a 40% CPU performance uplift, plus improved photography, among other things.
Google Pixel 5a What we Want to See
We’re still enamoured with the Pixel 4a but even more eager to speculate how it could improve in the next affordable Pixel phone.
1. More Rear Cameras
We’ve wanted more rear cameras on the entire Pixel line for years and were hoping the Pixel 4a would inherit the telephoto lens of the Pixel 4.
Since that didn’t happen, our hopes shift to the Pixel 5a, which we’d love to see with a zoom and ultrawide lens (and heck, why not a macro while we’re at it).
2. 5G Connectivity Standard
While the Pixel 4a 5G will define how viable the mid-range 5G phone is in a market that seems happy enough with 4G LTE cheap phones, we’d love to see the Pixel 5a pack 5G as a standard feature.
This might depend on whether 2021 phones that connect to the advanced networks come any cheaper, given the price hike that this year’s 5G-capable phones experienced, but even an affordable 5G phone would be a stellar option.
3. Better Battery Life
The Pixel 4a didn’t immensely suffer the Pixel 4’s abysmal battery life, but it wasn’t spectacular, either, often with single-digit capacity left at the end of a single day.
Given many budget phones have 4,000mAh batteries or larger, we’d love to have the mid-range Pixel 5a last as long as the competition.
4. Metal and Glass Body
Yes, the mid-range line has had a polycarbonate plastic body since it debuted in the Pixel 3a. But it’s the most significant budget compromise on a device with incredible software and a reliable camera.
We’d love to see the Pixel 5a step up its game, especially since other equally-priced phones like the iPhone SE 2020 with glass backs and metal frames.
5. A Micro SD Slot
Google. Please. If you’re not going to ship your Pixel 4a with more than 128GB of storage, at least let us expand it on our own. Here’s hoping that amend in the Pixel 5a.