It has been a week since Google announced the Pixel 5a and stated that, after reports that the device was completely canceled, it would only be in the USA and Japan.
Considering the Pixel 4a I tested one of the best cheap phones in 2021, I was initially shocked that the follow-up would not be released in the UK.
But after spending some time with very cheap, very high-quality and very good phones in the last few days, my mind has changed a bit. In markets like the UK, can Google really offer some of the technology available elsewhere for the price?
The Pixel 4a is a great phone – but it is a bit basic. It sells itself solely on camera performance and is smaller than average size, falling behind the competition in many areas. I can’t imagine that Google would be doing anything differently with the Pixel 5a.
Competition is too big
Already this year I have been blown away by an offer at the same price as the Pixel 4a. Phones like the Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro offer a 120Hz OLED display, a large battery at £ 249 and ridiculously fast charging – which is £ 100 cheaper than the Pixel 4a.
John Mundy stated in his in-depth review, “The Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro is one of the cheapest phones you can buy, even better than some of the best mid-range phones we’ve reviewed. There are not many phones in the market today that give you more for your money. “
Then there is the Poco range – another Xiaomi brand – which is currently in the spotlight by the Poco F3. The £ 329 phone has a processor that trues the flagship Pixel 5 and offers 5G – something more is missing on the 4a, though it will certainly be added to the 5a.
There are other options. Both Realme 8 Pro and Realme X50 Pro have been affected and have come well below the asking price of Pixel 4a.
These phones may not offer the sheer picture quality of the Pixel 4a, but they do offer more variety with different lens and zoom options. If you don’t need very good picture quality, there’s little reason for the Pixel on one of these phones and I can’t consider the Pixel 5a to be a big step to capture them.
It is also worth keeping in mind the Pixel 4a 5G which, despite its name, is actually more like the Pixel 5 than the Pixel 4a. It matches the pricier model in terms of processor and camera. It wouldn’t be too much of a stretch to see the Pixel 5a like the 4a 5G. Add a lot of extra features and you will start encroaching everything you have to Pixel 5, or Pixel 6 in Google.
This is not to say that Google should dig its A series phones entirely in the UK. While the phones listed above affect many areas, I am still disappointed with the software they use. The worst is Android’s version of Xiaomi with in-built ads, heavy bloatware and bugs. Google’s Pixel phones are not free of bugs, but you get frequent updates and a slick version of Android.
Maybe in 2022 when enough time has passed and the Pixel 4a is really outdated, I welcome the arrival of the 6a, but for now, there are many other cheap phones that have snatched the Limelight from Google’s A Series. .