The Google Pixel 4a has made another early appearance, this time in the listing for a coronavirus-tracing app. This isn't so much of a leak since we knew the phone was coming, but it's another sign that the phone's reveal and launch aren't far away.
Frandroid (opens in new tab) (via 9to5Google (opens in new tab)) found mention of the Pixel 4a on a list of phones claimed to be compatible with the StopCovid contact-tracing app that recently launched on the Google Play Store. The codename "sunfish," next to a simple "x" in the brand column, is known to be the alias of the Pixel 4a handset.
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This seems to indicate that the developer of the StopCovid app Lunabee could be in possession of a pre-release Pixel 4a device for testing purposes. Otherwise, it may be simply an assumption on its part that the new Pixel will work with the app, or it's had communications with Google to confirm forward-compatibility.
While the Pixel 4a has been delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic, it's now expected to be revealed in July. It will become the replacement for Google's excellent Pixel 3a mid-range handset, and will rival the $399 Apple iPhone SE 2020 in the budget flagship arena.
Fortunately, the Pixel 4a looks set to bring a range of features to give it an edge in this battle. The OLED punch-hole display (set to measure in at 5.7 or 5.8 inches) will make it look like a proper modern smartphone, unlike the bezels on the iPhone SE or even the Pixel 4.
The Pixel 4a will likely have a weaker Snapdragon 730 chipset compared to the A13 Bionic chip in the iPhone SE, which is the same one found in the iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro. But the Pixel 4a should still have enough power for the average user, especially as some leaks have suggested it could come with 6GB of RAM, an upgrade over the Pixel 3a's 4GB.
It'll also inherit the same awesome camera tech as the rest of the Pixel family, although you'll only get a single rear sensor. But Google's camera tech has shown it can deliver some of the best smartphone photos around even on a phone that costs $400, so the iPhone SE will certainly have a fight on its hands later this year.