What just happened? Google has confirmed that it's discontinuing the Pixel 3a and 3a XL, marking the end of the entire Pixel 3 lineup. While the duo won't be available to buy directly from Google, the company says third-party retailers will continue selling the phones while stock lasts.
The Pixel 3a and 3a XL went back to Google's Nexus era of value-oriented smartphones, only this time they brought a top-notch camera experience to the table, alongside slick, clean Android and timely system updates at a sub-$400 price point.
Launched in May last year, the phones dropped a few conveniences like water resistance and wireless charging, plus they shipped with only 64GB of storage, but these factors along with its plastic build allowed Google to put it within reach of more buyers. Also, the surprise inclusion of a headphone jack and fast charging only increased their appeal.
Google thinks the devices have run their due course and confirmed to Android Police that it will no longer be selling them. "Google Store has sold through its inventory and completed sales of Pixel 3a. For people who are still interested in buying Pixel 3a, the product is available from some partners while supplies last."
This leaves the Pixel 4 (and XL) as Google's sole (and expensive) offerings for now. The company's upcoming affordable model, the Pixel 4a, has been under development for quite some time, though it remains to be seen when Google deems it fit for release.
Right now, the Android landscape, although rich with options for every budget, lacks a true competitor to Apple's recently released iPhone SE. There are, however, rumors circulating around the upcoming OnePlus Nord (previously known as the OnePlus Z), which will apparently pack a 90Hz AMOLED screen, Snapdragon 765G, and triple-cameras while launching at a much lower price point than the company's current $800 offering and could potentially shape up to be a decent rival to Apple's affordable iPhone.