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Introducing Pixel 5: Google officially joins the 5G game with a new flagship phone



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Google Pixel 5

Stephen Shankland / CNET

Google released the $ 699 (£ 599, AU $ 999) Pixel 5 on Wednesday, its first phone with 5G wireless capabilities.

The publication marks the first time that the search giant will take advantage of technology that boasts 10 to 100 times the speed of 4G cellular networks. Almost all other Android phone manufacturers, including Samsung, LG and Motorola, have introduced 5G phones in the last year and a half. Apple’s upcoming iPhone 12 is also expected to be 5G.

Google is also launching a new version of the Pixel 4A, the mid-range phone that was announced last month that can also connect to 5G networks. The Pixel 4A 5G it costs $ 499 (£ 499, AU $ 799), or $ 150 more than the non-5G version. Google unveiled the new phones during a virtual event on Wednesday, which also unveiled a new one Chromecast streaming device and a Smart Nest Audio speaker. The company typically unveils its new gadgets every fall during a New York launch, but took the event online due to coronavirus pandemic.


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Earlier, Google annoyed the Pixel 5, as well as the 5G-compatible version of the midtier 4A, last month. But on Wednesday, the company unveiled the rest of the details of its flagship Pixel 5. They include a display that extends to the front of the device, with a camera for drilling holes in the upper left corner. The device is waterproof and 8GB RAM.

Selling devices is crucial for Google because the company knows that people are no longer just looking for things on desktops. They tell their smart speakers to play selected playlists, using their phones to order food to take home from their favorite restaurants, or create jogging routes with mapping apps.

The more Google knows about people and their interests, the more valuable its ads become to marketers who pay the company to target potential buyers based on their likes, dislikes, age, interests, and location. The company’s large-scale digital advertising operation, which is being investigated by antitrust regulators, generates most of Google’s annual sales of $ 160 billion.

Google Pixel 5 is facing serious pressure as the search giant continues to struggle in the premium phone business. In terms of smartphone software, Google’s Android, the world’s most widely used mobile operating system, powers nearly nine out of every 10 smartphones shipped worldwide. But the company has failed to achieve traction with its own branded phones, and Pixel sales have been weak for years. Google executives have blamed the decline in fierce competition in the premium phone market, which is dominated by Apple and Samsung.

The challenge of selling its high-end phones prompted Google to create its midtier line last year. The Pixel 3A helped boost Google’s smartphone business, but was discontinued in July. Pixel 4A will face strong competition from the budget phones of Apple and Samsung – iPhone SE and the Galaxy A51 – both cost about $ 400.


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