Google Launches Pixel 4 But Here’s Why It Won’t Be Coming to India

Google has confirmed that the latest Pixel 4 smartphones won’t be coming to the Indian market this year.

Tech News
3 min read
Google eased the face unlock feature and gesture control that uses the Soli radar chip.

Now that we’ve seen the Google Pixel 4 in flesh, and the prices have been announced, here’s the bad news for those waiting in India to buy the phone. Google has confirmed that neither the Pixel 4 nor the 4XL will be coming to our shores this year.

Why is this happening? As you might know, the Pixel 4 supports gesture-based Motion Sense control which is one of the coolest thing on this year’s Pixel devices.

However, this feature works on a frequency band which is not licensed in the country. This had previously question marks on the availability of the feature, but now Google has decided to avoid launching the device altogether.

Motion Sense is powered by Google’s Project Soli, which has been designed in-house to make smartphone experience touch-free.

Soli is basically a low-radar based fully integrated sensor which operates in the 60-GHz band. Google has design in such a way that it fits onto a chip which can be produced at scale and used across a wide range of mobile and wearable devices as well.

This is the sensor embedded on the Pixel 4 smartphones.
This is the sensor embedded on the Pixel 4 smartphones.
(Photo: Google/YouTube)
But in India, the 60Ghz band is private, which means, nobody can license this frequency band, including Google.  

This is what Google said in its official statement to The Quint on Tuesday about the Pixel 4 situation in India.

“Google has a wide range of products that we make available in different regions around the world. We determine availability based on a variety of factors, including local trends, and product features. We decided not to make Pixel 4 available in India. We remain committed to our current Pixel phones and look forward to bringing future Pixel devices to India”
Google spokesperson
Soli feeds into the authentication (for face unlock as well as hand gestures), and without that the Pixel 4 smartphones lack the required security standards. 
Motion Sense announced on the Pixel 4.
Motion Sense announced on the Pixel 4.
(Photo: Google/YouTube)

Using this tech, Pixel's face unlock puts the new Google flagship in the same league as the iPhone, which also uses face unlock as the primary unlock feature. Unfortunately, Indian users won’t get to experience it this year.

How Soli sensor works.
How Soli sensor works.
(Photo Courtesy: Google)

The search engine giant also pointed that the images used for face unlock will never be saved or shared with other Google services.

As for the devices, the Pixel 4 and 4XL smartphones feature the super smooth display with 90Hz refresh rate which we’ve already used on the OnePlus 7 and 7T series.

The phone is powered by the Snapdragon 855 (not the Plus version) and 6GB RAM, with the Pixel 4 and 34 XL carrying screen sizes of 5.7-inch Full HD+ and 6.3-inch Quad HD+ respectively. The phones have been priced starting from $799 (Rs 56,000 approx) but it doesn’t matter for those in India.

(The Quint is available on Telegram. For handpicked stories every day, subscribe to us on Telegram)

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