The Google Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL have been on the market for a while now, and they brought a lot of new tech to Mountain View’s in-house mobile hardware. However, with the Pixel 4a and 4a XL, we’re not expecting a lot of this new stuff to make the jump to the more affordable models. We now know the complete technical specifications of the new Pixel 4a.
Complete specs leak ahead of official launch
Thanks to colleagues at 9to5Google, we now know the complete spec sheet of the upcoming Google Pixel 4a. It is confirmed to be a plastic build with a 5.81-inch OLED FHD+ display. The resolution is 2340 x 1080. As expected, the Soli radar stuff is gone and the display will have a hole-punch for the selfie camera.
The chipset is a Qualcomm Snapdragon 730. The GPU is the Adreno 618. Google’s Titan M security chip is in there but there’s no Pixel Neural Core, just like we saw last year with the Pixel 3a. The Pixel 4a comes with 6GB of RAM. The battery is a 3080 mAh with support for 18W fast charging. The main camera is a 12.2-megapixel sensor with autofocus and OIS/EIS.
There is a 3.5mm headphone jack on the Google Pixel 4a.
The Pixel 4a is spotted out in the wild
Google pixel does not exactly run a tight ship when it comes to avoiding leaks – the Pixel 4 was one of the most leaked smartphones ever – so it’s no surprise then that the Pixel 4a has been spotted out in the wild already. The launch event, which was due to take place on May 12, has been canceled, so it looks like we’ll be seeing this phone for the first time officially via a live stream. However, you can take a peek at it today.
When we take a look at the back of the device, which in this image is covered by a first-party Google pixel case, we notice that the fingerprint sensor is once again in the middle like it was on the Pixel 3, Pixel 3 XL and Pixel 3a range. The camera module, however, looks to be the same setup as the main Pixel 4.
Three codenames leak for the Pixel 4a line
The good folk over at XDA Developers, thanks to a tip from Twitter user @akes29, have discovered three codenames for the Google Pixel 4a smartphones expected to launch this spring. Having dug through the Android Open Source Project (AOSP), the codenames were confirmed well as details about the SoC platforms each is based on. Each is fishy in more way than one!
Sunfish – the first codename to be spotted in the AOSP repository is powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 730 SoC (codenamed sm7150). This is a common chip for the upper-mid-range market. Phones that feature a Snapdragon 730 today are the Samsung Galaxy A71 and the Realme X2.
Redfin – the next leaked codename refers to the what the XDA Developers think could be either a smartphone or a development platform, but it’s running on the “sm7250”, the codename for Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 765. This SoC has integrated 5G, which will fuel speculation that Google pixel could be about to drop a 5G version in its Pixel 4a range. This would be surprising for us, especially given that regular Pixel 4 smartphones don’t support 5G. However, by the time we get to May, there will be a lot more 5G smartphones on the market ‘and Google pixel could just do this.
Bramble – the third codename appeared on the AOSP multiple times and it appears to be running on the same SoC, or at least the same Linux kernel version 4.19, as Redfin. It seems to be in development with Android 10 and as well as Android 11, so there is no guarantee this is a smartphone yet, we’ll just have to wait and see.
A spring 2020 release date?
The Pixel 3a and 3a XL launched in May 2019. Google should stick to the same release schedule this year and I would expect to see the 4a and 4a XL sometime in the spring. Sales of the Pixel 3a phones were very good, so there is little chance Google will abandon the mid-range at this stage.
Google Pixel 4a design and specs
Thanks to new renders published on 91mobiles, some design choices about the Pixel 4a series can now be revealed. Unsurprisingly, the 90Hz display and Soli radar chip that were behind some of the more innovative features on the Pixel 4 phones will not be included in the more affordable versions. That means a return to the traditional fingerprint sensor on the back of the smartphones and a hole-punched display for the selfie camera rather than the large top bezel which houses all the face unlock tech.
Price and availability
The Google Pixel 3a launched at $399, and it seems likely Google will follow this guideline again. If there is not Soli radar tech and only a single camera, $350 would not be out of the question here either. The mid-range market has gotten a lot busier than it was 12-months ago and Google could reduce the RRP in order to be more competitive. We’ll have to wait and see closer to the launch of the phone.