Google’s confirmed the Pixel 5 release for later this year. With the release on the horizon, interested buyers should start preparing for its arrival.
In a bit of a surprise, Google confirmed the existence of the Pixel 5 in its Pixel 4a announcement. The Pixel 4a, the company’s new budget phone, arrives later this month while the Pixel 5 lands sometime this fall alongside a 5G version of the Pixel 4a.
Google says the Pixel 4a 5G and Pixel 5 will be available in the U.S., Canada, the United Kingdom, Ireland, France, Germany, Japan, Taiwan and Australia and that it will provide more information about the devices in the coming months.
We don’t have an official release date for the Pixel 5, but there’s a good chance it launches in the company’s standard October window. Last year, the Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL launched in mid-October.
Google’s Pixel 4a and Pixel 5 announcement in France briefly confirmed the pre-order date for the Pixel 4a 5G and Pixel 5. Assuming the company doesn’t make a change, you can expect the devices to go on sale on October 8th.
Oddly enough, YouTuber Jon Prosser, who has released accurate information in the past, claims the Pixel 5 is coming September 30th.
If one of these dates holds, Google’s new flagship will clash directly with Apple’s new iPhone 12 series. Apple typically releases new iPhones in September, but it looks like the company will ship its flagship models in October.
If you’re planning to buy a new phone this fall, and you’re interested in picking up the Pixel 5, here are a few things you should do before the release date.
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Track Pixel 5 Rumors
If you’re interested in upgrading to Google’s new flagship you’ll want to get caught up on the latest information and track Pixel 5 rumors as we push toward the official announcement.
The rumor mill will keep you informed about the Pixel 5’s potential hardware and software features. It will also help you set realistic expectations about the device’s pricing, specs, and release date.
Check Your Upgrade Status
Make sure you keep an eye on your upgrade status as we push through the summer and fall.
Carriers will sometimes bump your upgrade status so you’ll want to check in on it to see if anything changes in the buildup to Google’s announcements.
Google hasn’t confirmed the Pixel 5’s carriers, but we imagine that you’ll be able to take an unlocked model to any one of the major carriers.
Get Familiar with Android 11
Unlike the Pixel 4a, the Pixel 5 will run Google’s Android 11 operating system out of the box. We recommend getting familiar with Android 11 ahead of the device’s arrival.
Android 11 is currently in beta testing ahead of a release in Q3. Google hasn’t announced a release date, but current signs point to a release in early September. Fortunately, you don’t have to wait until September to familiarize yourself with the software.
If you have an eligible device, you can download the Android 11 beta right now and get acquainted with it.
If you don’t have a phone that works with the beta, or you don’t want to install beta software, dig into feedback from testers.
Doing this will ensure that you aren’t caught off-guard by the look and feel of the Pixel 5’s software.
Lots of people love Google’s pure version of Android, but many others prefer the skins from companies like OnePlus and Samsung. You won’t know what group you fall into unless you do some research.
Use this time to get familiar with the companies that make accessories for the Pixel line. If you do this early enough, you’ll know which accessory makers to avoid and how much to spend if you want to pair a case, screen protector or something else with your Pixel 5.
Get familiar with pricing, styles, the pros and cons of popular manufacturers, and the level of protection these accessories will provide.
Look at Google’s Other Pixel Phones
Before you decide to make the Pixel 5 your next phone, make sure you look into Google’s other Pixel devices.
The Pixel 4a is the company’s new budget model. It doesn’t come with the latest and greatest features, but it’ll be more than enough for a lot of people, especially at its $350 price point.
Research Other Pixel 5 Alternatives
If you aren’t stuck on buying a Pixel device, you’ll also want to check out top Pixel 5 alternatives on shelves right now. Here are a few we recommend:
- iPhone 11
- iPhone 11 Pro
- iPhone 11 Pro Max
- iPhone XS
- iPhone XS Max
- iPhone XR
- iPhone SE 2020
- OnePlus 8
- OnePlus 7
- Galaxy S20
- Galaxy S10
- Galaxy Note 20
- Galaxy Note 10
You’ll also want to look into upcoming devices like Apple’s iPhone 12 series.
Make a Plan for Your Current Phone
Make sure you have a plan for your current phone so you aren’t scrambling when you go to buy your new device.
Make sure you keep the phone in pristine condition. This is how you’ll get the most money back from resellers, your carrier, or Google.
If you’re feeling generous, you might be able to find a friend or relative who could benefit from your current phone. You might also might want to look into donating your phone to charity.
Decide If You Need Preferred Care
Given the Pixel 4a’s status as Google’s budget device, the Pixel 5 won’t be cheap so you’ll probably want to protect your investment. You can buy a case, but you also might want to join Google’s Preferred Care program for added protection.
Google Preferred Care warranty covers accidental damage and device malfunctions. You can learn more about it over on Google’s website.
As we push toward the Pixel 5’s launch, research the program and see if it’s worth it.
If you’re unhappy with your data plan or your provider’s coverage, use this time to dig into competitors and see if you can find a better fit.
You’ll also want to dig into smaller carriers like Spectrum, Xfinity, and others. They might not get the Pixel 5 right away, but they’re typically cheaper.
Wait Because the Galaxy S21 Launch is Close
A report from SamMobile claims the Galaxy S21 series will launch in early January with a release in late January or February.
These reports have been backed by a different report out of Korea. This one claims that Samsung will launch the Galaxy S21 series in January with a release coming later in the month.
Leaker Jon Prosser, who has leaked accurate information about unreleased products in the past, says the Galaxy S21 is slated to launch on January 14th.
Prosser also says pre-orders will start on January 14th followed by a release a few weeks later on January 29th.
A report from Reuters throws its weight behind the early release. The publication says Samsung "may launch its flagship Galaxy S smartphones more than a month earlier than expected in a bid to grab market share from Huawei and fend off competition from Apple."
An unnamed Samsung official says because "the market environment is changing rapidly, it is true that it is not possible to guarantee whether the usual unpacking schedule will continue as it is."
Samsung India has also confirmed the Galaxy S21 launch for January 14th. And in a bit of surprise, the company says it's now taking pre-orders for the unannounced devices.
Everything is pointing to an arrival in January. So if you're interested in a new Galaxy S device, you might want to put your credit card away and wait.
One additional note: It looks like the Galaxy S21 series will debut by itself. Korean media believes Samsung's new flagship foldable phone, the Galaxy Z Flip 2, will arrive later in Q1.
This is notable because the original Galaxy Z Flip debuted alongside the Galaxy S20 series.
So if you're interested in a new Galaxy flagship, and you want to compare the Galaxy S21 to Samsung's new foldable, you might have to wait even longer.
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