Google is the tech company behind Android, the world’s most popular mobile OS, but this iconic software titan definitely took its sweet time when it came to actually designing and selling its own physical smartphone. It was well worth the wait: The Google Pixel and Pixel XL were rolled out a few years back, and since their release, the Pixel lineup has grown to feature some of the best flagship Android phones — which often feature a number of the best smartphone deals — that money can buy in 2019.
Google has updated the Pixel smartphones nicely over the years, too, releasing a new refresh on an annual basis to keep up with other flagship brands. Google expanded its lineup even further in 2019 when it launched the budget-friendly Pixel 3a and 3a XL as more affordable flagship alternatives. Unfortunately, though, we didn’t get to see the Google Pixel Watch this year, something that would have finally added a smart wearable to the stable (and one that might some day prove to be the first Android smartwatch that can actually give the Apple Watch some real competition).
Google has just revealed its newest phone, the Pixel 4, at its recent October Pixel event, and with Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and other holiday sales now upon us, now is the perfect time to start looking for price cuts on these excellent Android devices. If you’re on the hunt for that is arguably the top Android phone, then read on. We’ve got the best Google Pixel deals for you right here:
Google Pixel 4
The Google Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL just dropped in October and are now available from most smartphone retailers. Our review team had great things to say about its quick performance, superb OLED display, and solid camera module (despite the notable lack of a wide-angle lens, something that will hopefully be corrected with the Pixel 5), but the Pixel 4 didn’t reinvent the wheel. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but given that the Pixel 4 — while certainly a great phone — isn’t quite the upgrade we wanted, you’ll have to choose for yourself if buying a new one at launch price is worth it. The Pixel 3 is simply a better bang for the buck at the moment if you’re buying an unlocked device to bring to your own service provider.
If you have to have the latest Android flagship, though, then you can do much, much worse than the Pixel 4, although the best way to get a deal on one right now is probably through carrier trade-in discounts and sign-up offers for new customers. Nonetheless, we’ll keep our list updated with the latest unlocked Google Pixel 4 deals that pop up, and there’s no denying that if you’re going to score a discount on one in 2019, it’s going to be during Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and other holiday sales going on right now.
Google Pixel 3
The third-generation Pixel smartphones were released last fall and quickly earned a top spot among our favorite Android mobiles. In fact, the Google Pixel 3 and its larger sibling, the Pixel 3XL, are in the running for the best Androids of 2018 overall owing to their vibrant touchscreens, snappy hardware performance, and super-slick software interface — after all, if the Android operating system is your tool of choice, then it’s not likely to get much better than a device from the company who wrote the book on that mobile OS in the first place.
The Google Pixel 3 wasn’t a bad deal for a premium phone even at its original price, but you can naturally find them for even cheaper now, making this one perhaps the best value to be found in an Android flagship right now. If you don’t plan on shelling out the extra cash for the Pixel 4 but still want something that’s quite recent (a 2018 model can hardly be considered “old”), then the Pixel 3 offers a ton of bang for your buck.
Google Pixel 3a
In May of this year, Google added the first non-flagship Pixel devices to its smartphone lineup. The Google Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL were introduced as cheaper alternatives to the pricier flagship models, following the growing popularity of midrange phones (like Motorola’s Moto G series, to name one popular example) that offer much of the performance of premium phones with pared-down hardware and a much smaller price tag. The gamble paid off, and the Pixel 3a and 3a XL proved to be two of the best values to be found in an Android smartphone if you’re not fussy about premium touches like all-metal construction.
The Pixel 4 was just released, but we don’t yet know if Google will also be revealing an updated refresh of the Pixel 3a devices next spring. It’ll probably happen, although we’re obviously not expecting it this early (the Pixel 3a isn’t even one year old yet), and we’d be remiss if we didn’t include some Pixel 3a and 3a XL deals for you in the mean time.
Google Pixel and Pixel 2
Google isn’t a huge hardware manufacturer, so its first- and second-gen Pixel mobiles don’t get as much long-term support as other flagships like older iPhones do (to name just one example of many). What this means for deal-hunters is that unless you’re willing to buy a refurbished unit, you’ll likely have to sniff around a little bit to find a brand new Pixel or Pixel 2 still available online — but they are floating around here and there. Another good bit of news is that these older Pixel devices can be fully updated to run Android 10, so you’re not stuck with dated software.
Nonetheless, those early-generation Pixels are still quite good — if not a little bit long in the tooth today — especially if you’re the type of techie who likes to buy somewhat older high-end stuff at a mere fraction of its original price, saving hundreds. A premium flagship phone from 2016 or 2017 will still be a very solid phone in 2019, and since you can find professionally refurbished Google Pixel and Pixel 2 phones for around $100 to $200 depending on specs, you might be better off grabbing one of these instead of a Pixel 3a (or another newer budget phones) if you’re after a truly dirt-cheap Android.
Digital Trends may earn commission on products purchased through our links, which supports the work we do for our readers.
- Google Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL review
- Google discounts the Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL on Amazon for Black Friday
- Only two Sony Xperia phones will get Android 10 before the end of 2019
- Best smartphone deals for December 2019: iPhone, Samsung, and Google Pixel
- Google Pixel 3a vs. Samsung Galaxy A50: Time for a new midrange king?