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Google discontinues Pixel 4 smartphone 9 months after release

Google has discontinued its high-end Pixel 4 smartphone just nine months after sales kicked off in October last year.

The US tech giant, which unveiled its much anticipated budget Pixel 4a this week, quietly discontinued its flagship device.  

Both the standard £669 Pixel 4 and £829 Pixel 4 XL are being killed off by the company, as first confirmed to The Verge

With the decision, Google has set a new marker to demonstrate the incredibly short lifespan of smartphones, which usually get a year on the market at least. 

Google didn’t disclose why Pixel 4 is being discontinued so soon, although it’s likely the new £349 Pixel 4a has had an influence on the decision in an uncertain financial climate, resulting from the current pandemic. 

Google's Pixel 4 (pictured above) was unveiled in an event in New York City in October 2019

Google’s Pixel 4 (pictured above) was unveiled in an event in New York City in October 2019

‘Google Store has sold through its inventory and completed sales of Pixel 4 [and] 4 XL,’ a Google spokesperson said. 

‘For people who are still interested in buying Pixel 4 [and] 4 XL, the product is available from some partners while supplies last. 

‘Just like all Pixel devices, Pixel 4 will continue to get software and security updates for at least three years from when the device first became available on the Google Store in the US.’

Both devices are out of stock in Google’s store in the US, the Verge reports, although some variants are still available in other regions, including the UK.   

The original Pixel, Pixel 2 and Pixel 3 were on the market for around 18 months each. 

Pixel 4, which has enjoyed just half that lifespan, is being displaced by the Pixel 5, although this device isn’t due until October at the very earliest.   

The company's latest offering will feature motion sensor controls, facial recognition software and improved cameras, Google says.

The company’s latest offering will feature motion sensor controls, facial recognition software and improved cameras, Google says. 

After entering the smartphone market in 2010 with the Nexus brand, Google kicked off the Pixel line in 2016.

Pixel 4 started sales in October 2019, packed with radar-sensing technology that can control the device remotely using hand gestures, powerful facial recognition software and improved cameras. 

The now deceased phone featured Google’s Project Solei, a chip that powers its unique radar abilities and its hand-gesture features. 

Shortly after the Pixel 4’s release, Google had to scramble to correct its facial recognition feature that allowed the device to be unlocked while users’ eyes were closed. 

Earlier this week, Google formally unveiled its much anticipated £349 Pixel 4a smartphone after months of delays due to the coronavirus pandemic.  

Pixel 4a is only available in black and will be available for pre-order in UK, Ireland, France, Germany, Italy, Spain on September 10 and will go on sale on October 1. 

Google has also announced that there will be a 5G version of the 4a, but it will not be released alongside the regular model. 

The budget-minded Pixel 4a is coming out four months after Apple released a discount iPhone, the second generation SE, priced at $399. 

The low price helped spur iPhone sales at a time of soaring unemployment, as the economy plunged into a deep recession 

GOOGLE ANNOUNCES PIXEL 4A 

Google has formally unveiled its much anticipated Pixel 4a smartphone after months of delays due to the coronavirus pandemic

Google has formally unveiled its much anticipated Pixel 4a smartphone after months of delays due to the coronavirus pandemic

Google has formally unveiled its much anticipated Pixel 4a smartphone after months of delays due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

The internet has been awash with rumours and leaks about the mid-market device since Google’s I/O event was cancelled in May.  

And the device has now finally been revealed and closely resembles the majority of leaks.

It sees a return for the much-loved rear-mounted fingerprint sensor as well as an excellent and simple camera system, a stalwart of Pixel handsets. 

All this comes at a price of just £349/£349, undercutting the rival iPhone SE.

Google and Apple, two true juggernauts in mobile manufacturing, have both thrown their weight behind affordable handsets that are smaller and cheaper than their flagships while still being full of some high-end tech.

Despite experiencing difficulties due to the current global situation, the Pixel 4a strikes an excellent balance between affordability, performance and aesthetics. 

It is only available in black and will be available for pre-order in UK, Ireland, France, Germany, Italy, Spain on September 10 and will go on sale on October 1. 

Google has also announced that there will be a 5G version of the 4a, but it will not be released alongside the regular model. 

In a vague statement in a blog post, Google said: ‘This fall, we’ll have two more devices to talk about: the Pixel 4a (5G), starting at $499, and Pixel 5, both with 5G.

‘Pixel 4a (5G) and Pixel 5 will be available in the U.S., Canada, the United Kingdom, Ireland, France, Germany, Japan, Taiwan and Australia. 

‘In the coming months, we’ll share more about these devices and our approach to 5G.’

 

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