War! Google declares ambitions to replace LG: But can Pixel 6 defeat Samsung and Apple's flagships?

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This article may contain personal views and opinion from the author.
War! Google declares ambitions to replace LG: But can Pixel 6 defeat Samsung and Apple's flagships?
So, if you read PhoneArena, you'd know about Google's recent "Why you should switch to Pixel -113 reasons" ad/video, where the Pixel-maker ruthlessly mocks LG and perhaps Samsung. I'll admit I was a bit late to the party, but this indeed felt ruthless! I mean - Google beat me to the punch to declare itself LG's successor.

Then again, the entire video is clearly meant to poke fun at everyone and everything, so I'm willing to believe Google's intentions were mostly sweet and pure, like fresh laundry off your LG or Samsung washer. Moreover, LG doesn't seem too offended at all - it appears that the refrigerator-maker has sent out emails to users with an offer to buy... a Pixel 5A?! What a love story.

Still, reasons #30, #111, and #112 were hilarious, but also an open declaration. A statement. Not just aimed to draw LG and Samsung customers' attention to the Pixel, but also a warning for some of the younger or even more experienced brands at the playground.

Even before this funny marketing campaign, it was clear what Google's trying to do. The company's core market is in the US, and although you might think the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro exist to convert iPhone users into Android fans, it doesn't look like this is the case. Let's see why...

You may also want to read
Pixel 6 Pro review
Pixel 5a review
Pixel 5 review

Does Google actually want to compete with Apple and Samsung?


Google's entire lineup is currently made up of four phones:


Right out of the gate, it seems like Google isn't coming for Apple or Samsung's heads, at least at the ultra-premium flagship price segment. The iPhone 13 Pro starts at $999, and Samsung's Galaxy S21 Ultra launched at a price of $1199. Furthermore, even Samsung's standard Galaxy S21+ flagship ($949) came out at a higher price than Google's most expensive Pixel. Also, prices for the Galaxy S22 series and iPhone 14 series aren't expected to go down.

You can interpret Google's decision to price the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro as they did in two ways:

  • Google is indeed trying to compete with Samsung and Apple, and that's why it undercuts them in price
  • Google isn't trying to directly compete with Samsung and Apple because it knows it... can't - at least not anytime soon

I believe both points are valid, but I tend to lean towards the latter. I think pricing the Pixel 6 at $599, and the Pixel 6 Pro at $899 was a very conscious decision, which leaves Google with time to prove itself and eventually get to that "ultra-premium" level.

Meanwhile, the process leaves Google with a chance of attracting customers and clearing the way from the likes of LG (took care of itself), OnePlus, Motorola, and even Xiaomi and Honor in Europe. But back to the US for a moment!

Google isn't coming for Apple's head: OnePlus, Motorola and Xiaomi should be more scared


Here are the top smartphone manufacturers in the US, according to quarterly market data (Q2 2021):


  • Apple (53%)
  • Samsung (26%)
  • Lenovo/Motorola (12%)
  • LG (3%)
  • Others (6%)

If you look at the Pixel 6, you realize that Google's aggressive pricing tries to do damage to brands like Motorola, OnePlus, Sony, and just about anyone that sells premium mid-rangers at around that $600 mark.

Fortunately for Google, the competition in that $600 price range is much weaker in the US than in other places like Europe and Asia. The great OnePlus Nord 2, which undercuts the Pixel 6 in price, is not for sale in the US, and of course, Xiaomi is also out of the question, despite having a dozen devices that can compete well with the Pixel 6.

Even if we move to Europe where Xiaomi and Honor are present, we'll find that the former might offer amazing value for less money in the face of the Xiaomi 11T, but it can't match the Pixel's cameras, as well as some premium features like wireless charging, and reverse wireless charging. Of course, Honor's most recent Honor 50 mid-ranger stands no chance against Google's Pixel 6.

Talking extra features, IP 67/68 water resistance is also hard to come by at this price point. Although Samsung will sell you a Galaxy A52s, which does come with an IP rating but is a far cry from the Pixel 6 when it comes to performance and overall camera quality.

If you know your Android phones, you'd know the Pixel 6 has no real competition at the moment


So, it looks like Google's Pixel 6 has little to no competition at this strange price point - it's not cheap, but it's also not priced too high. So, it's certainly looking like Google will push brands like OnePlus and Samsung to either bring flagship prices down or come up with new devices that can compete with the great value the Pixel 6 brings to the table.

The obvious Pixel 6 competitors will be Samsung's delayed Galaxy S21 FE, OnePlus 10, and of course, the Xiaomi 12. However, if we judge by current pricing, these phones should cost anywhere between $700-800, and perhaps even a bit more in Europe.

When it comes to the Pixel 6 Pro - the story more or less repeats itself. The iPhone 13 Pro costs 250 EUR more in Europe, and Samsung's upcoming Galaxy S22 Ultra will be even more expensive than the iPhone. Yet, Google seems to have covered all the basics to be able to meet the competition.

The Pixel 6 Pro has a flagship 120Hz display, the most powerful camera system on a Pixel ever, and all the bells and whistles. The 6 Pro will clearly be the biggest threat for phones like the OnePlus 10 Pro and Xiaomi 12.

Ultimately: Is Pixel 6 the first step of Google's masterplan to take over the smartphone world?



We come back to the idea that Google doesn't want to directly compete with the likes of Samsung and Apple... just yet. These brands have established brand identities and brand recognition. People know and love Samsung's "S" series, and iPhone users are the most loyal customers out there.

So, Google's odd price strategy is meant to put the company on the map... again. In the absence of LG and Sony's questionable attempts, Google only has to deal with OnePlus, Motorola, and Xiaomi - depending on where you are.

When compared to Apple or Samsung, Google's brand recognition might be nonexistent, but if the average Joe sees a OnePlus 10 and a Pixel 6 in-store, it's pretty obvious that Google will get the benefit of the doubt there. Xiaomi will be a tougher opponent in Europe, but let's see what Google can do.

In the end, you won't be surprised when I tell you - Google's Pixel 6 series is brilliant news for me and you as customers! Competition always pushes brands to do better, and frankly... the Pixel 6 might be the most important phone for the industry (in that regard) in a while! We'll explore this very topic soon, but until then, let us know if you like Google's aggressive attempt to disrupt the market!
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