Google has launched a budget version of its flagship Pixel smartphone as it aims to ramp up pressure on its tech rivals Apple and Samsung.
Yesterday at its annual developers conference, Google unveiled a £399 Pixel 3a, half the price of the Pixel 3 which was released last year.
Its Pixel 3a and larger Pixel 3a XL, which will cost £469, will be available in the 13 countries which currently sell the Pixel 3, including the UK.
Though the 3a will lose one of the Pixel 3’s two front-facing cameras and come without a wireless charging option, it shares many features with its more expensive stablemate.
#Pixel3a has arrived and its camera is worth all the hype and all the captures. And the best feature? Get all this for only $399.
✅Google Lens pic.twitter.com/nuzzym3Q5k
— Made by Google (@madebygoogle) May 7, 2019
This includes the model’s iconic OLED screen display, its Night Sight feature which uses AI to enhance images taken in low-light, and the addition of the Google’s new AR Maps app which superimposes an arrow over your camera feed.
In good news for many, the 3a will also come with a 3.5mm headphone jack, unlike its premium counterpart.
“For us, what’s important is for Pixel to get into the hands of more and more people,” head of Google’s product division Mario Queiroz told the BBC.
“Most phones in this general price range are phones from last year or from two years ago, or they are phones that are ‘specced’ very differently and even have different brands.
“We wanted to bring a true Pixel experience to this price point.”
Compared to its similarly priced counterparts from Samsung and Apple the Pixel 3 has achieved fairly lacklustre sales.
With this new entry level model Google will hope to undercut its rivals by offering many of the same premium features for a far lower price point.