Pixel phones swept under the rug during Google's earnings call
Now, we all know Google’s main source of revenue is its search engine. But the company is also quite proud of its achievements in the field of smartphones. The Pixel phones are often compared to iPhones and Samsung’s Galaxy S series. But they don’t compare in one key aspect: sales.
Unfortunately, the latest Google earnings call does little to shed light on exactly how many Pixel devices the company sold. In fact, the whole phone business barely made an appearance during the call. In the transcript of the call, the word "Pixel" was mentioned only 3 times and "smartphone" didn't make it at all.
Google’s smartphones are not even worthy of their own revenue category, bunched up instead in the “Other revenue” column where the Play Store also resides, conveniently masking exactly what percentage of the other revenue is coming from Pixels.
What Sundar Pichai had to say about the devices is even vaguer. About the Pixel 3a’s performance on the market, he said it “sold well last year”. But what about the flagship, Pixel 4? Well, “With Pixel 4, we continue to build out our capabilities and are keenly focused on execution, delivering great user experiences and broadening our distribution.“
So, it didn’t sell well then. This statement sounds a bit like telling someone they have a great personality while avoiding any comments about their looks.
The short segment regarding hardware ends on a positive note, though (you can’t bum out those investors, after all), with “I’m excited about our road map ahead across our products.” That road map is apparently a secret, but we do know that a Pixel 4a is coming out soon and so far all signs point that it will sell well just like its predecessor.
Overall, however, the call leaves the impression that Google’s ambitions on the hardware side aren’t high and the company is just going with the flow while focusing on its software products. Hopefully, Google won't give up on its Pixels altogether, with Huawei out of the picture in the West, we'd hate it if competition in the high-end segment got even slimmer.