Google Pixel 5 launch: release date, specs and pre-order news

The Google Pixel 5 is official. Google unveiled its new flagship phone at the Launch Night In event, calling it the ultimate 5G Google phone.

The Google Pixel series has made a name for itself in the world of mobile phone photography by packing in some of the most cutting-edge camera tech, and the Pixel 5 looks to be no exception. 

Could the Google Pixel 5 be your next smartphone? Here are all the details on the Pixel 5, from the price, release date and specs, to how you can pre-order (and take advantage of a tempting Pixel 5 + Bose pre-order deal).

Pixel 5 release date

Google Pixel 5: price, release date, design, leaks and news

(Image credit: Google)

The Pixel 5 has been unveiled and is available for pre-order now. 

The Google Pixel 5 will be available in the US on October 15. An exact release date for other markets has yet to be revealed, but when we tried to purchase one from the UK Google Store we were told we would get it on October 16.

There’s a tempting pre-order deal, which includes a free pair of Bose QC 35 II headphones (and it’s also available on the new Pixel 4a). See below for all the details. 

Google Pixel 5 phone + free Bose QC 35 II headphones
Buy a Pixel 5 before 19th October 11:59pm BST, or a Pixel 4a (5G) between 5th November and 18th November, and receive a complimentary set of Bose QC 35 II headphones. Available in the UK, Ireland, Germany and France for residents aged 18 or older; while stocks last. View Deal

Google has been predictable when it comes to unveiling its Pixel smartphones. The Pixel 1, 2, 3 and 4 were all unveiled in the month of October. The most recent, the Pixel 4 debuted on 15th October 2019 and shipped nine days later.

Of course, the coronavirus is far from predictable and has already thrown the tech industry into disarray, leading Apple to delay the iPhone 12 and Amazon to postpone its Amazon Prime Day sale.

Google confirmed it planned to announce its “new Chromecast, latest smart speaker and new Pixel phones” with a “Launch Night In” live stream.

Previously, we knew that the tech giant officially registered both the Pixel 5 and the more affordable Pixel 4a (5G) with the FCC authority on 1st September. 

Prior to this, the most reliable leak – spotted in an official blog post published by Google France – pointed to a pre-order date for the Pixel 5 as 8th October.

Looking further ahead, Google is rumoured to be working on a Pixel 5a, a more affordable spin on the 5G Pixel 5, as well as a foldable Pixel.

Pixel 5 price

The Google Pixel 5 costs £599 ($699, AU$1079). Google has confirmed that the phone is coming to the US, UK and Australia, and you can pre-order it now directly from Google’s web store.

Previous rumours saw a German tech blog peg the Pixel 5 price at €629 (£599, $699, AU$999). So that was pretty close.

Interestingly, that tip matched a post on Reddit which claimed that Google surveyed US consumers to gauge their reaction to Pixel 5 prices. The survey suggested that the Pixel 5 would start at $699 – a whopping $300 less than a Samsung Galaxy S20.

It’s not hard to see why Google is keen to put the Pixel 5 into as many hands as possible. According to GlobalStats, as of July 2020, Google holds just 1.5% of the smartphone market in the UK, compared to Apple with 46% and Samsung with 30%.

Google could also announce a Pixel 5a, which, like the Pixel 4a, would exist as a cheaper, pared-down version of the flagship Pixel phone. Leaked Android documents seen by 9to5Google suggest that the 5a, codenamed “Barbette”, could be released in Q2 2021.

Pixel 5 design and display

The Pixel 5 is a 6-inch, 5G phone, that’s available in black and green (Just Black and Sorta Sage, in fact).

The Pixel 5 has a 6-inch Full HD display with a resolution of 1080 x 2340, which is 432 pixels per inch. It’s an always-on display, and a flexible OLED screen.

That’s larger than the Pixel 4’s 5.7in display but, as it keeps the same resolution, has a slightly lower pixel density.

Thankfully, the Pixel 4’s paltry 2800mAh battery has been replaced by a much more acceptable 4080mAh juice pack for the Pixel 5. It’s Qi-certified for wireless charging, too, and as expected can wirelessly charge the Pixel Buds when they’re placed on its rear panel.

It’s a 90Hz display so the rumours around 120Hz proved unfounded. Rival handsets such as the Galaxy S20 and Galaxy Note 20 remain in front on paper here, then.

Display guru Ross Young had tweeted, “it is 120Hz!”, but perhaps he was referring to a Pixel 5 XL? The latest rumours suggest that Google won’t launch an ‘XL’ variant of the Pixel 5 – at least not in the immediate future. 

With 8GB RAM and 128GB storage, the Pixel 5 is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 765G (not the newer, faster 865) and unsurprisingly runs the latest Android 11 OS. Google has waterproofed the Pixel 5, too, giving it a water-protection rating of IPX8, meaning it can be fully submerged in water around a metre deep.

Back in May, a leak published by The Information suggested that Google was ‘disappointed’ with the Pixel 4, and that a number of key Pixel staff had quit as a result. Hopefully the Pixel 5 will prove more popular.

Oh, and rumours that Google is designing a foldable Pixel still haven’t gone away. Leaked internal Android documents seen by 9to5Google refer to a “foldable” Pixel device codenamed ‘Passport’, along with a release date of Q4 2021.

Pixel 5 camera

Pixel 5 pre-orders

(Image credit: Google)

The dual camera system array remains but marries an all-new 12.2 MP dual-pixel lens with optical and electronic image stabilisation, with an also new 16 MP ultra-wide that can snap a 107-degree field of view. 

Super Res Zoom is still onboard for keeping those zoomed-in photos sharp, while Night Sight is now also available in Portrait Mode.

The rear snapper is capable of capturing 4K/60fps and 1080p/120fps video, with the new Cinematic Pan on hand to smoothen them out. The front camera is 8MP.

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