Google unwraps latest flagship Pixel devices

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The Pixel 5 is powered by Android 10, and starts at $699 (R12 000).
The Pixel 5 is powered by Android 10, and starts at $699 (R12 000).

Even though industry pundits have pointed to South Africa’s “healthy smartphone market”, the country is not on the list to receive Google’s latest flagship phones.

Yesterday, the Alphabet-owned Internet giant unveiled a variety of hardware devices, including the Pixel 4a and Pixel 5.

Both devices are powered by Google's Android operating system. The company only reveals the selling price of the Pixel 5, saying it starts at $699 (around R11 600).

According to Google, the Pixel 4a will be available in Japan on 15 October, and eight other countries starting in November. Pixel 5 will be available in eight countries starting on 15 October, and in the US and Canada on 29 October.

“5G is the latest in mobile technology, bringing fast download and streaming speeds to users around the world. Whether you’re downloading the latest movie, listening to your favourite music on YouTube Music, catching up on podcasts with Google Podcasts or playing a game on Stadia, Pixel 4a and Pixel 5 will provide you with fast speeds,” says Brian Rakowski, Google’s VP of product management, in a blog post.

“YouTube, YouTube Music and Google Podcasts on Pixel 4a and Pixel 5 also give you access to the content you want when you don't have WiFi connectivity by pre-downloading content via 5G.”

According to Google, both devices are packed with artificial intelligence and assistant features, and are 5G-compatible.

The devices also feature a new ultra-wide lens alongside the standard rear camera, as well as cinematic pan, which is inspired by the equipment used by Hollywood directors.

Furthermore, the portrait mode on the Pixel 4a and Pixel 5 allows users to capture portraits that focus on the subject as the background fades into a blur.

Rakowski points out that the Pixel 4a and Pixel 5 also have all-day batteries that can last up to 48 hours with extreme battery saver. “This mode automatically limits active apps to just the essentials and lets you choose additional apps you want to keep on.

“Like all Pixel devices, security and safety are paramount in Pixel 4a (5G) and Pixel 5. Both devices come with our Titan M security chip to help keep your on-device data safe and secure, and both phones will get three years of software and security updates.

“Plus, Pixel 5 is designed with the environment in mind; we used 100% recycled aluminium in the back housing enclosure to reduce its carbon footprint.”

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