There have been quite a number of leaks and rumours surrounding Google’s upcoming mid-range smartphone, the Pixel 4a. Thanks to an exclusive new leak by 9to5Google, we now know almost everything about the device, including its list of specifications.
For starters, 9to5Google claims that the Pixel 4a will only be available in one screen size, indicating that there may not be an XL model like the Pixel 3a. If this is true, it’s quite an interesting decision, given that Google had always released its Pixel smartphones in two sizes prior to this.
Since the Pixel 4a is believed to be offered in only one screen size, Google will supposedly split the difference in size between its two predecessors. 9to5Google says that the mid-ranger will sport a 5.81-inch 2340 x 1080 OLED panel, which is slightly larger than the Pixel 3a’s 5.6-inch display, and a tad smaller than the 3a XL’s 6-inch screen.
Besides that, the Pixel 4a is said to feature a plastic construction, just like its predecessor. This should keep the price of the phone low – well, relatively – while offering the Pixel experience; it’s a winning formula, given the success of the Pixel 3a. If the build quality of the 3a is any indication, the 4a should still feel solid despite its plastic body.
Naturally, the Pixel 4a will come with a number of upgrades, most notably in the performance department. Leaks suggest that it will be powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 730 SoC, which is faster and more power-efficient than the Snapdragon 670 found in the Pixel 3a.
If the Pixel 4a does come with a Snapdragon 730 chipset, it will address one of the biggest complaints with the Pixel 3a, which had a number of performance issues. Granted, the Snapdragon 730 isn’t Qualcomm’s most powerful or latest chipset – even in its own series – but it should still be able to offer a respectable level of performance.
Design wise, the Pixel 4a will very likely sport a hole-punch cutout on the top left of the screen for the 8MP f/2.0 selfie camera; it’s said to be the very same sensor used by its predecessor. Given the lack of a top bezel, the Motion Sense radar chip – enabled by Google’s Project Soli – found in the Pixel 4 smartphones is unlikely to be offered by the Pixel 4a.
This may or may not be a disappointment to some folks, but we do think it’s not an exclusion many will miss. After all, Motion Sense doesn’t exactly offer much utility, not to mention the fact that the feature itself is disabled in a number of countries, including here in Malaysia.
Anyway, the camera system of the Pixel 4a is also detailed by 9to5Google. According to the site, the 4a will feature a single 12.2MP camera on the back, and…that’s it. There’s no telephoto or ultra-wide angle lens on offer here, just like how it was with the Pixel 3a, for better or worse.
Understandably, this is likely done to bring down the cost of the phone, but we imagine some folks will be disappointed that the new telephoto lens found in the Pixel 4 will not be brought to the more affordable Pixel 4a. Nonetheless, the singular camera module should still be able to offer the excellent picture quality Pixel smartphones are known for.
In the software side of things, the Pixel 4a will offer a similar software experience as the higher-end Pixel 4 smartphones. Not only is it said to feature the new Google Assistant that’s very fast and seamless to use, it’ll also come with three years of guaranteed software updates.
When it comes to battery capacity, the Pixel 4a is believed to be packing a 3,080mAh battery. While that’s just barely bigger than the Pixel 3a’s 3,000mAh cell, it’s worth noting that the 4a is expected to feature a more power-efficient 8nm Snapdragon 730 chipset. With that in mind, it’s possible the Pixel 4a will have slightly better battery life than the Pixel 3a.
Rounding out the rumoured specifications of the Pixel 4a include 6GB of RAM, 64GB or 128GB of internal storage, 18W fast charging via a USB-C port – no wireless charging support here – a rear fingerprint sensor, and the return of the 3.5mm headphone jack.
The Google Pixel 4a was supposedly set to be unveiled at Google I/O 2020, but given the current COVID-19 situation, the event had to be cancelled. That being said, retail boxes of the Pixel 4a recently appeared in a leak, so it’s entirely possible the mid-range phone will be released in the next couple of months.
As for how much the Pixel 4a will go for, it’s expected to retail from $399, which comes up to about RM1,720. The phone will likely be offered in two colour options: Barely Blue and Just Black.
(Featured image: Evan Blass)