Pixel phones swept under the rug during Google's earnings call

Pixel phones swept under the rug during Google's earnings call
Earnings calls are meant for investors to see how the companies they’ve poured money into are doing, but they’re much more than that. We get all sorts of curious information from them, especially when giants such as Apple or Google are concerned.

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.

Related phones

Pixel 4
  • Display 5.7 inches
    2280 x 1080 pixels
  • Camera 12.2 MP (Dual camera)
    8 MP front
  • Hardware Qualcomm Snapdragon 855, 6GB RAM
  • Storage 64GB, not expandable
  • Battery 2800 mAh
  • OS Android 10



19. Damo579

Posts: 268; Member since: May 18, 2013

Google should stick to the 400-500 dollar a range they would sell more most likely.

14. cliive

Posts: 1; Member since: Jan 24, 2020

They need to rethink there pricing strategy as let’s be honest they might have some flagship specs on the 4 series but they look like midrange devices

16. meanestgenius

Posts: 23174; Member since: May 28, 2014

Totally agree. Pixels are way overpriced for what they offer. Even Google realizes that the Pixels are a failure. No way they could ever offer the best experience ever when they are full of more bugs than even iPhones.

23. Venom

Posts: 4137; Member since: Dec 14, 2017

And how, pray tell, do they look like midrange devices? That has to be the most ridiculous thing I've ever seen.

10. tokuzumi

Posts: 2038; Member since: Aug 27, 2009

I bought the 3a, because it was affordable, and had all the features I needed. I wish it had more than 64GB of storage, but I'm not missing out on anything by not choosing the flagship. I did have the first gen Pixel, and it was a great phone. But I got it used so I didn't have to pay the Pixel tax. But to be fair, I'm not paying $800+ for any phone. Apple, Samsung, Pixel, Sony, etc.

13. Venom

Posts: 4137; Member since: Dec 14, 2017

I agree. The 3A has been a great experience for me and is the BEST phone ever. Apple is ridiculously expensive and overpriced. Plus they have just as many bugs if not more than what some people think. Imagine pretending to have an iPhone and suddenly thinking you're a fan now lol.

17. meanestgenius

Posts: 23174; Member since: May 28, 2014

Imaging pretending that someone has to pretend to own an iPhone lmao. People like me never have to pretend, we just show proof: https://imgur.com/a/Ijb8dfe Now imagine pretending to be a Nokia smartphone fan by pretending to own their devices when you don’t even know what SoC they use, lol.

21. Venom

Posts: 4137; Member since: Dec 14, 2017

Lol why are you getting so defensive? I never said any names or pointed any fingers. Imagine trying so hard to prove something on a public forum. Calm down.

8. meanestgenius

Posts: 23174; Member since: May 28, 2014

“Swept under the rug” is very apropos for the flagship Pixels. The flagship Pixels do not compare to flagships from Apple, Huawei, Samsung, the BBK Electronics brands, or Xiaomi in more than just sales: They don’t compare when it comes to specs or features, either. Flagship Pixels don’t offer near enough for how much they cost. The midrange Pixels are better than the flagships, but they don’t compare to the likes of the BBK brands, Xiaomi and Huawei’s sub brand Honor when comparing specs/features and pricing. And with the midrange iPhone 9 and OnePlus 8 Lite smartphones on the horizon, the midrange Pixels are going to be a hard sell.

6. inFla

Posts: 243; Member since: Aug 17, 2018

Hype it all you can, junk doesn't sell.

7. meanestgenius

Posts: 23174; Member since: May 28, 2014

Have to agree with you there. The flagship Pixels just don’t compare to flagships from Apple, Huawei, Samsung, Xiaomi, OnePlus, or any of the other BBK brands.

12. Venom

Posts: 4137; Member since: Dec 14, 2017

That explains the Pureview lol.

15. meanestgenius

Posts: 23174; Member since: May 28, 2014

As the article suggest, it definitely explains Pixels. Even Google knows that they aren’t a hit, lol.

22. Venom

Posts: 4137; Member since: Dec 14, 2017

Sales of the 3A says otherwise.

1. AlienKiss

Posts: 364; Member since: May 21, 2019

As a smartphone fan I always look at other's people smartphones to see what brand/model they use. I've NEVER seen a Pixel in someone's hands! NEVER! I'm from Europe if you're wondering. Everyone has either Samsung, either Apple. Personally, I was never interested in the Nexus/Pixel lineup for 4 major reasons: - NO SD card slot = NO BUY! I don't even care about the rest of the specs anymore if there's no SD slot.. - Fuggliest design ever! - it has more bugs than a sloth! :)) - was waaaaaay too expensive for what it offers! No thanks! You can keep it! I'll go get a Samsung or a Sony instead and I'll be a LOT happier!

2. lmao2016

Posts: 89; Member since: Mar 17, 2016

I'm like you a fan of smartphones and I can tell you I see pixels out in the while but not has much as Samsung and apple I live in the US so maybe that's why idk

4. Shkselectah

Posts: 53; Member since: Jun 26, 2018

You have announced only 2 reasons, where are 2 more?

20. AlienKiss

Posts: 364; Member since: May 21, 2019

There are 4 reasons, each marked with the '-' sign.. Look again..

11. tuminatr

Posts: 1193; Member since: Feb 23, 2009

Just back from Netherlands and Hungary and I can mostly agree with your statement. I also pay attention and what I saw was mostly low-end phones, older iPhones and Samsung J and A series of phones. I do see a large market opportunity for the pixel A series of phones in Europe. I did see a few pixels including mine. Phones are a personal choice and everyone has their reasons for picking a brand or model I take a lot of photos and love the quality camera I can depend on I was also like you in the past SD slot was the way to go why would anyone get a phone that does not have expandable memory. The simple answer is I never used it, photos and music from the cloud built-in memory being much faster than an SD card. The SD card is just not necessary anymore.

18. mackan84

Posts: 724; Member since: Feb 13, 2014

Might have something to do with Pixel only being sold in 13 countries? ...and every other reason that has been mentioned.

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