The imminent Pixel 3a XL is basically Google’s version of the iPhone XR.
In short, it’s expected to be a 6-inch phone with a LCD display instead of a pricier* OLED but with some of the pricier Pixel phones’ best features.
Like the iPhone XR, it will cut corners of course, as this latest “leak” from YouTuber “This is Tech Today” points out (no wide-angle selfie cameras, for instance: see video at bottom).
How does the Pixel 3a (5.6-inch) and Pixel 3a XL (6-inch) — due to be announced likely on May 7 — stack up?
Good camera: probably the same (great) rear camera in the pricier Pixel 3/Pixel 3 XL (released last October). The iPhone XR, on the other hand, gives you a single rear camera instead of the dual cameras on the iPhone X.
Materials: The newer Pixel 3a/Pixel 3a XL will be made of plastic, according to an earlier report from This is Tech Today. The Pixel 3/Pixel 3 XL have glass backs. The iPhone XR uses aluminum instead of the X’s stainless steel sides.
AI: one of the things that the makes the Pixel a great phone is the software. Google would be foolish not to include its killer AI on the cheaper 3a. (The AI software is the reason I own a Pixel 3 XL.)
Headphone jack: Pixel 3a/Pixel 3a XL is expected to have a headphone jack, the Pixel 3/XL uses USB-C.
Charging: this is still a bit sketchy but possibly no wireless charging, according to This is Tech Today (see video).
Display: 1080p, similar resolution to the Pixel 3/XL. (Note that the iPhone XR has a much lower resolution display compared to the X.)
Price (rumored): $399 for the Pixel 3a / $479 for the larger Pixel 3a XL. Both prices are for 64GB models. Versions with 128GB of storage will be offered too.
But note that the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL are currently on sale at the Google Store for $599 and $699, respectively. That’s $200 off the regular price.
*Or as Google senior VP of devices and services Rick Osterloh put it to Fast Company: “We see opportunity to come up with products that make for more accessible price points, with a great user experience.”