For the past few years, Google has been releasing its ‘a’ series of pixels in the middle of the year, aimed at consumers looking for a budget device. This year’s Pixel 7a will launch in India at Rs 43,999 ($536), which isn’t exactly a cheap price for the country, but is closer to the US price of $499 (Rs 40,937).
Notably, last year, the Pixel 6a launched in India at the same rupee price while its US price was $449. Reddit and Twitter expressed dissatisfaction with the high price.
Google noted that the company will continue to sell the Pixel 6a in the country at a reduced price of ₹29,999 (~$365), which is not too far from the reduced price of $349 in the US. Some e-commerce platforms like Walmart-owned Flipkart is already selling the device for ₹27,999 ($341). The price may drop even further with holiday discounts later in the year.
The company said it is “excited” to bring the 7a to India. Despite reports suggesting that Google wanted to move some production to the country, it is still making the latest device in Vietnam.
“It has been encouraging to see the interest that people across the country have shown in the Pixel 6a, Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro in the past year, and with this new introduction, Pixel remains committed to India,” a company spokesperson said.
Despite marketing efforts, Google has yet to capture any significant market share in the country. Navkendar Singh, associate vice president at IDC India, said the company shipped more than 150,000 devices to the country last year. But it already surpassed the 175,000 mark in the first quarter of 2023, largely thanks to the Pixel 6a. For comparison, the Indian smartphone market recorded 144 million shipments last year.
Google mainly operates in the $300-$500 segment in India, which grew 20% in 2022. Additionally, the company mainly sells its devices through online channels, which had a 53% market share and outsold the offline channel. Singh said more people upgrading their phones are looking towards this segment, which has also benefited from the sub-$300 segment declining by 15% last year.
The Mountain View-based company will have to work hard against competitors like Nothing, OnePlus, Vivo, and Xiaomi, which sell various models in the $300-$500 range.