To the disappointment of many Nexus fans, the Pixel line has not been about affordability. The Google Pixel phones are high-end devices that showcase the best of what Google and Android have to offer. From everything we’ve seen about the Pixel 3 XL and Pixel 3, that will be the case again this year. However, there have been a few rumors of a mid-range Pixel and now we’re hearing about it again.
We first wrote about the alleged mid-range Pixel way back in April and then rumors popped up again in June. According to a new report from ET, Google is planning to launch a “mid-tier” Pixel in India after the global launch of the Pixel 3 XL and Pixel 3. This “mid-tier” Pixel will target the Rs 40,000-Rs 50000 range while the high-end Google Pixel phones will target the Rs 70,000-Rs 85,000 range.
The report goes on to say that the Pixel hardware team recently visited India. They were interested in exploring the Indian market for a mid-range device and especially interested in how OnePlus has done so well. The idea of a mid-range Pixel in India would be to entice owners of OnePlus, Oppo, and Vivo phones to switch. We don’t know much about the device right now. The last report claimed it could have a Qualcomm Snapdragon 710 SoC and launch in the first half of 2019.
India is the world’s second largest market and the Pixel phones are almost non-existent there. Google has only sold 80,000 Pixel 2 phones since launch in India. Google Pixel phones had only 1% market share in the premium category last quarter. So it’s clear that Google has a lot of room for growth in the country. They just need a device that will pull people away from the familiar names. OnePlus has been able to do a great job in India, now Google wants to see if they can do the same.