This isn’t the first time Google is delivering a stock-Android running smartphone whose price starts at $649. The Nexus 6, just to refresh your memory came at the same price tag, and now we see a familiar price tag on a Pixel, with a completely unfamiliar face and design. Google has promised that software updates for both Pixel and Pixel XL will be rolled out for a period of two years, and that is exactly what is frustrating me at this point to know that despite being a fan of devices running pure Android, I will not be upgrading to one. While the price tag does offend me, it’s Google’s effort of what it does with our hard-earned money that’s really grinding my gears.
For Its Asking Price, Google Should Have Promised at Least 5-Years’ Worth of Software Updates for Its Pixel Smartphones
Pixel is available in the 32GB and 128GB capacity models and is available for the following prices:
- Pixel 32GB: $649
- Pixel 128GB: $749
- Pixel XL 32GB: $769
- Pixel XL 128GB: $869
If you are unable to see the price similarities with another company’s smartphone lineup, then allow us to break it down for you. Apple’s iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus are available for the exact same prices listed above and for the exact same storage models, and despite appreciating the clean look of stock Android, perhaps the only reason why I will probably switch to an iPhone is because, for the same price tag and internal storage, I will be guaranteed software updates for a much longer period. Just to remind you, it’s been reported that Apple’s iPhone 4 is now being placed on the obsolete list later this month.
Even now, if you visit the company’s website, iOS 10 will be listed as being compatible with iPhone 5, a handset that was announced way back in 2012, and if I do purchase a Pixel, I will only be guaranteed software updates till 2018? That’s completely unfair; when you purchase a smartphone, you just don’t do it for the powerful hardware and impressively designed look, you’re also paying a portion of that retail price for that refined software experience, which Google is only guaranteeing us for a period of 48 months, show the level of dedication to its users on the mobile platform. When you invest this much in the flagship, you expect it to work for a long period. No extra hurdles to cross configuring its software, no flashing, no nothing.
With all the money that consumers will end up paying the company, it becomes Google’s responsibility, but it appears that the tech giant seriously needs to think about whether its Pixel phones have been announced as a cash cow for the company, or as an upgraded software experience for the user. Some readers might argue that in the future, factory images of these phones could be announced, allowing you to flash the software on your Pixel devices. While I completely agree that this alternative exists, am I really paying $649 just so I can go through a tedious process of updating the software on my Android devices?
No, I am not. Instead, it should be Google’s turn to continue providing timely OTA updates for the price that we’ve paid for these phones. Either that or drastically reduce their pricing since that will be a huge weight off our shoulders.