Why Did Google Skip Pixel 5 Launch In India? Here’s What We Think


It is now confirmed that the Google Pixel 5 and the Google Pixel 4a 5G will not see the light of day in India. The only hope of light from Google Launch Night In for Indian tech enthusiasts is that we finally have the launch date for the Pixel 4a.

Why Did Google Skip Pixel 5 Launch In India? Here’s What We Think


Do note that, Google also skipped the launch of the Pixel 4 and the Pixel 4 XL in India and there was a strong reason behind it. The Pixel 4 lineup came with a Soli sensor that uses a 60 GHz frequency range, which is reserved for the military services. Hence, these devices didn't get approval from various agencies.

However, with the Pixel 4a 5G and the Pixel 5, the company moved away from the Soli sensor and now uses a regular fingerprint sensor for biometric authentication purposes. So, what could be the reason that made Google not to launch the latest devices in India?

It's Price And 5G

The Google Pixel 4a 5G and the Pixel 5 are the first set of 5G capable smartphones, and both devices are powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 765G 5G processor, the same chipset that powers the OnePlus Nord that comes with a starting price of Rs. 25,000.

When Google launches a product in India, it is likely to be a bit expensive here when compared to North American markets. In fact, a Google device priced $500 would easily cost Rs. 50,000 here in India. So, considering the US price of the Pixel 5, which is $699, the device would easily cost over Rs. 60,000 in India, which is more than double the price of the OnePlus Nord, is equivalent if not better in many aspects.

India is a price-sensitive market, so selling this phone in large numbers would have been a huge task for the company. Even if we look at the track record of the Pixel smartphones, the company hasn't sold previous smartphones in large numbers.


Another reason is that the 5G network is not yet available in India. So, it doesn't make sense to launch a premium smartphone with a USP (5G) that has no use case in the country. Hence, only the Pixel 4a is launching in the country, which is a 4G smartphone and is likely to be priced around Rs. 30,000.

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