What you need to know
- The upcoming Pixel 5a 5G will reportedly feature one of last year's most popular chipsets.
- Given the leaked design, there will be little to differentiate this phone from its predecessor.
- The Pixel 5a 5G is expected to launch later this year, possibly along with the Pixel 6.
The Google Pixel 5a 5G may be pushed off for a limited release later this year, but that doesn't mean the leaks will stop coming in. Surprisingly, not too much is known about the device besides the fact that it'll look eerily similar to the most recent Pixel smartphones. The most recent tidbit finally gives us an idea of what chipset we might expect in the upcoming mid-range smartphone, and it's left us scratching our heads.
According to a report from 9to5Google, code within the latest Android 12 Developer Preview references "Barbet," the codename for the Pixel 5a 5G, along with "sm7250," which points to the Qualcomm Snapdragon 765. That was the chip that powered many of the best Android phones last year, including the Google Pixel 5.
If that's true, this would mean that the Pixel 5 and Pixel 5a 5G will share similar designs and the same chipset, just like the Pixel 5 and Google Pixel 4a 5G did. It would undoubtedly confuse Google's smartphone lineup, given that its devices have all sported the same design since the Google Pixel 4a but with questionably staggered releases. It also means the Pixel 5a 5G would be using a year-old but still capable chipset instead of the newer Qualcomm Snapdragon 780G.
Given that the Pixel 5a 5G will see a limited release in the U.S. and Japan, it might make sense for Google not to waste money and resources to supply the device with a newer chipset and make way for an even cheaper smartphone. Whatever Google's plans are, there's still some time before the device is expected to launch. It was first thought that the Pixel 5a would arrive at Google I/O 2021, and while that may no longer be true, there may be a few other hardware releases to look forward to in the meantime.