Google underwhelms with latest Pixel phones

Google today unveiled a pair of underwhelming 5G Android smartphones: the Pixel 5 and the Pixel 4a 5G with features and lower price points put the handset more directly in competition with lower-end to mid-range Android phones.

Google's Pixel 5
Google’s Pixel 5

Mark Gurman for Bloomberg News:

While IDC data show Pixel shipments rose 52% to 7.2 million units last year, Apple, Samsung and Huawei Technologies Co. each sell more than 100 million handsets annually.

The Pixel 5 moves to a front display that is almost all screen. Both new phones include slower processors, fewer camera sensors and cost less than the premier phones from its rivals. The Alphabet Inc. unit also removed the facial recognition camera and motion sensor from last year’s Pixel 4, instead adding a hole-punch sized notch for the camera and reverting to a fingerprint sensor on the back. The starting price for the Pixel 5 is $699, $100 less than last year, and the same price as the entry-level iPhone 11.

The flagship handset unveiled Wednesday for new fifth-generation, or 5G, wireless networks now comes in a single 6-inch model, replacing the 5.7-inch and 6.3-inch Pixel 4 offerings from last year. It comes in black and green.

The Pixel 4a 5G is similar to the Pixel 4a announced in August, but adds a 6.2-inch screen, improved cameras and a faster processor. That phone costs $499, considerably more than the smaller non-5G variant. Both phones are scheduled to be released Oct. 15, Google said.

MacDailyNews Take: Alternate headline: Google throws in the towel on smartphones.


        1. I watched the entire debate, listened to every word, and still have no idea how the president plans to address our country’s many problems in his 2nd term. Still no plan to replace ACA (we’ve been waiting 4 years for that and all we get are tepid executive orders), no plan to deal with Covid (reopen ASAP), no plan to deal with racial issues, no plan to deal with climate change, same for every question. If he has plans, that would’ve been the time to talk about them. The president used his entire arsenal —insults, racial slurs, lies, conspiracy theories—but gave no actual details of any plans for the future. While I give the president credit for speaking in mostly complete sentences, he didn’t answer a single question. Though I can see why his followers loved his performance, the president did what he does best.

            1. I was hoping to hear the president actually talk about some issues. Is he incapable of articulating his party’s platform? Isn’t that the point of a debate, to debate the issues? Clearly the president has a very limited grasp of the issues, so he really had no choice but to say nothing of substance, as he always does. What can one do when they’re in a battle of wits totally unarmed? And last time I checked, just after the RNC, the entire Republic platform was a nothing more than a declaration of unconditional devotion to Mr. Trump, punctuated with a classic Nazi slogan for good measure. Has that been updated?

            2. Sorry, but Trump could have just had a robot spew his collected Twitter-verse catalogue at 30 second intervals, instead of showing up in person. His performance was a disgrace, and it certainly didn’t do him any favors with anyone who is undecided.

              “There should be more debates because Americans need to confront the fact that Trump and Biden didn’t merely have an “off night” on Tuesday. Their performances were every bit as calculated and cynical as they were unserious and exhausting. They were, believe it or not, trying their best.”


        2. I watched the entire debate. Trump looked terrible, sweaty, tired. Biden looked healthy. Trump came off very poorly. I’m not American so I don’t care either way but if you think Trump did well in that debate you’re just plain nuts. Trump is not winning asymmetrically, he’s just pandering to an ever-shrinking base that loves bullies. He can’t win with that strategy. His actual strategy is to invalidate the election with help from the Supreme Court, because Trump knows he is going to lose. I suspect Biden’s win is going to be so huge that even that strategy won’t work. Trump’s polling is getting worse, not better. His poor debate performance is contributing to that downward trend. Even Rick Santorum didn’t try to spin Trump’s debate performance. Santorum! When you lose Santorum you know you failed huuuuuuge.

          1. You’re not seeing it from the proper perspective.

            Trump, despite Wallace being Biden’s aide throughout (which the majority of likely voters saw plainly, by the way), got Biden to declare he’s not for Green New Deal, supports the police, say Antifa is an idea not a real thing, stoop to name-calling (“Clown”) and disrespecting the presidency (“Shut up”) thereby destroying any claim he might have had to higher ground “statesmanship,” etc.

            Trump is not stupid. Far from it. And those who dismiss him as “stupid” always lose.

            In the first debate, Trump solidified his already rock-solid base and got Biden to blow up large portions of his own base. Trump voters are now even more energized, if that’s even possible. Large portions of Biden’s fragmented base of supporters are now even more disillusioned.

            Anyone who says or thinks Biden won that debate does not understand Trump’s debate goals (accomplished very well), basic politics, likely voters, voter factions, etc.

            1. I assume you have been reading your crystal ball as there no way that you could actually know that as the evidence for it simply cannot exist at this juncture, it’s purely what you want and are desperate to be true and you haven’t even attempted to offer up an equally imaginary version of any such evidence to back your argument in your defence. That speaks volumes.

              All Trump offers is disruptive tactics in anything he does he has nothing to offer of a positive nature and simply covers his appalling performance at every level with smoke and mirrors that sadly fools those desperate for good news and have a taste for ignorant bigotry which they mistake for decisiveness. It at best can only work short term the markets can respond to the bs like his supporters but markets are as much about perception of strength than actual physical strength in an economy and as we have already seen that can decline as quickly as rises. Fact is he has no answers to the long term needs of a sophisticated economy just the mentality of the casino and that will be found out under someone else’s Presidency sadly when he will sit back and blame others for his own inherent failures as he has always done and far too many desperate people have lapped up. But hey go for it if you want, it’s your rollercoaster to hell.

            2. Those who dismiss Trump as stupid lose? Trump loses all the time. He loses money, he loses lawsuits, and he loses voters. Trump is not going to win. He won in 2016 by the slimmest of margins and lost the popular vote by a significant margin. The electoral college saved Trump.

              You’re right that Trump has a rock solid base but that base is way too small to win him the election. The extreme left isn’t large enough to matter. Biden doesn’t need to please them, they’re voting against Trump no matter what. Most people are in the centre, right where Biden is. I am right and you are so so wrong. I will be proven right by mid November after all the ballots are counted. Or are you like Trump and afraid to count all the votes? There is no problem with fraud when it comes to mail in voting. That is a lie Trump is feeding you.

              It truly is amazing that you’ve convinced yourself that what Trump did in the first debate was all on purpose and was part of a super intelligent strategy. Wow.

            3. spyinthesky,

              You’re standing too close. Step back a bit.

              It’s not a crystal ball I’m using, but very current data.

              In this race there are hardly no “undecideds” (new voters and the uninformed).

              Forget about the personalities, etc. I know you hate Trump. Set that aside and concentrate on the politics.

              Trump is actually very good at the politics of this, and, as the debate demonstrated, much better than Biden (who, I must point out has numerous failed presidential bids littered among with 47 years in politics for a reason).

              So, here are the main points:

              Trump does not care what Biden voters think of him. He’s not going to convince them to vote for him. If they think he’s uncouth already, being uncouth doesn’t hurt him with them in the least. Trump voters already know he’s uncouth and they’re going to vote for him anyway because they want certain things (tough stance on China, border security, lower taxes, open economy not more shut downs, an even greater number of conservative Constitutionalist Supreme Court Justices, etc.)

              So, Trump’s goal in the debate and going forward in the campaign is two-fold:

              • Fracture Biden’s base by forcing Biden to move more to the center losing his left flank. Mission accomplished with flying colors in the first debate (No green New Deal, supports the police, etc.).
              • Diminish Biden in the eyes of suburban women (soccer moms, hockey moms, whatever you want to call them) by getting a clearly volatile (perhaps due to dementia) candidate to act like Trump. Mission accomplished with flying colors in the first debate (“Clown,” telling a sitting U.S. President to “shut up,” etc.).

              Biden is supposed to be running as the “anti Trump,” but he quickly forgot that. His angry outbursts are exactly what Trump wanted to provoke.

              Okay, so what is the endgame? Trump voters were already energized and the enthusiasm gap was a gaping chasm over Biden voters prior to the debate. Now, after the debate, voters for whom “climate change” or “defund the police” or “medicare for all” or “radical change” is of utmost priority are unenthused even more over old, Sleepy Joe. Suburban women who don’t like Trump’s tweets (as if that matters, but to them it does), just heard the other guy call the President a “clown” and told him to “shut up.” “He’s mean, too!” They don’t like that either.

              Trump only needs a small percentage of them not to bother to vote and he’s doing that by making Joe less attractive to both the far left and to suburban women.

              In the first debate, Biden did nothing to dissuade any Trump voters, much less switch them to his side. If anything, the obvious bias of Chris Wallace throughout and Biden’s performance fired up Trump’s base even more.

              Biden really lost the first debate badly and, believe me, both campaigns know it. Trump was ON FIRE at his rally following the debate:

              (Trump starts at 1:40:55)

              He’s taken it up several notches now and that’s because he knows how well the first debate went for him. He knocked it out of the park.

            4. Now we know why Trump looked tired and generally terrible during the debate. He has COVID-19 and was already positive at the debate. Latest reports are that Trump does have symptoms and is feeling very tired (just like I said he looked at the debate, cha ching I’m right again). He has at least two major risk factors (that we know of) related to COVID-19. He’s obese and he has heart disease. Might be good for America if Trump gets very sick and recovers. Maybe he’ll stop calling it a democrat hoax then and start doing something about it.

            5. Plain Nuts,

              You are aptly-named.

              Nobody called COVID-19 a hoax. Pretending someone did something they didn’t only undermines you, not them.

            6. @Fist Them

              “Nobody called COVID-19 a hoax. Pretending someone did something they didn’t only undermines you, not them.”

              Nice deflection. Read carefully. I didn’t say Trump called the virus a hoax. He did however say it was a democrat hoax and he had to clarify that what he really meant was how the democrats are treating him about his poor handling of COVID-19. Still, many many many many many Trump supporters have in fact called COVID-19 a hoax. A simple search on YouTube will find those videos for you. Happy watching! Have fun squaring that with “Nobody called COVID-19 a hoax”. Hope your brain doesn’t explode.

              I will note that you had nothing at all to say about the fact that I was right about how terrible and tired Trump was at the debate. Now we know why he looked so bad. Already showing symptoms is not a good sign. That means two things. One, he was exposed to a large viral load. Two, he’s fat and weak.

  1. Google has underwhelmed with the Pixels for years now snd the latest Pixels are even more so. Google has given up on fixing the hot mess that’s Android’s flaws.

  2. Why are their phones underwhelming?

    Repeat after me…

    “Google is a search company…
    “Google is a search company…
    “Google is a search company…
    “Google is a search company…
    “Google is…

  3. It’s difficult to be excited when even Google can’t really be bothered to put in a real effort. There must be a method to their madness and I guess they feel in twenty years, like Windows before it people will simply gravitate towards it. Can’t see it myself so maybe it’s a just a sleeper in case something dramatic and unexpected happens in the future important to their business that they wish to control which might make it’s existence worthwhile to them.

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