January patches for Google's Pixels are now live, together with a decent set of functional patch notes. Outside your usual security improvements, that means Pixel owners can also look forward to a handful of fixes, including some sound fixes for the Pixel 5 and 4a 5G, better automatic brightness on this year's phones, plus call improvements on certain MVNOs, and auto-rotation improvements across the whole currently supported Pixel lineup — no longer including the Pixel 2.
This story was originally published and last updated .
In the Android enthusiast bubble, the Pixel 4a is one of the most hotly anticipated devices of 2020. The previous Pixel 3a won our phone of the year award, and both hopes and concerns are high when it comes to the follow-up. At this point, we know almost everything about the phone, from specs and benchmarks to the bump in base storage and a potentially reduced price — plus rumors of a 5G version. And based on Google's recent teaser, we may not have long to wait before an announcement.
All rumors suggest that Google will only release the Pixel 4a in one size, even though there is some evidence that the company initially also worked on an XL model. Some CAD renders of this phone that should not be have now been leaked by Pigtou and @xleaks7, showing what that handset would've looked like. Spoiler alert: It's just a bigger Pixel 4a, with the exception of dual cameras on the back.
A report from XDA Developers today cites the existence of three codenames potentially related to Google's upcoming affordable smartphones (or phone), and evidence discovered alongside those names paints a more confusing picture of the situation than ever. The long and short of it: there could be two Pixel 4a variants after all, and one of them could support 5G.
According to XDA, the three codenames of note are sunfish, redfin, and bramble. Sunfish is allegedly equipped with a Snapdragon 730, a 4G-only Qualcomm chipset for mid-range phones. This makes sense: the Snapdragon 730 is the logical successor to the Snapdragon 670 found in the Pixel 3a and 3a XL, and probably carries a pretty similar price tag.
The Pixel 4a rumor mill is picking up some current after last week's OnLeaks renderpalooza. YouTuber Dave Lee, also known as Dave2D, has posted unattributed claims about the upcoming series of budget phones — including word that the 4a may not even be a series, but a singular model.
One of our audience's most anticipated smartphones of 2020 may come from, of all places, Google. While the Pixel 4 has been a critical flop (though it also was our readers' choice), the Pixel 3a was championed as an all-around utility unit by almost every corner of the Android geekdom. Now, we're getting what might be our first look at the phone to supersede that one — a Pixel 4a, if you will.