CNET logo Why You Can Trust CNET

Our expert, award-winning staff selects the products we cover and rigorously researches and tests our top picks. If you buy through our links, we may get a commission. Reviews ethics statement

Google has low expectations for Pixel 5 phone sales this year, report says

The new 5G phone was launched this week.

Corinne Reichert Senior Writer
Corinne Reichert (she/her) grew up in Sydney, Australia and moved to California in 2019. She holds degrees in law and communications, and currently writes news, analysis and features for CNET across the topics of electric vehicles, broadband networks, mobile devices, big tech, artificial intelligence, home technology and entertainment. In her spare time, she watches soccer games and F1 races, and goes to Disneyland as often as possible.
Expertise News, mobile, broadband, 5G, home tech, streaming services, entertainment, AI, policy, business, politics Credentials
  • I've been covering technology and mobile for 12 years, first as a telecommunications reporter and assistant editor at ZDNet in Australia, then as CNET's West Coast head of breaking news, and now in the Thought Leadership team.
Corinne Reichert
Pixel 5 Pixel 4A 5G
Juan Garzon/CNET

Google is reportedly planning to produce only 800,000 Pixel 5 phones this year, because it has lower expectations on sales due to the coronavirus pandemic and slow sales last year. Google sold 7.2 million Pixel phones last year, according to IDC. But it's planning to produce just 3 million units this year in total across the Pixel 5, Pixel 4A 5G and Pixel 4A, Nikkei Asia reported Wednesday, citing unnamed sources.

Google's production of phones has been delayed due to COVID-19, the report said, and the company's plans to produce phones in Vietnam as well as China have also been put on hold.

"Google gave a relatively conservative order forecast this year because its flagship Pixel 4 did not sell well last year, and because COVID-19 is causing their team to stay on the safe side concerning handsets for now," a Google source reportedly told Nikkei.

Google didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

During the Launch Night In event Wednesday, Google unveiled the Pixel 5; the Pixel 4A 5G; a new Chromecast; a new Nest-branded smart speaker, the Nest Audio; and even a phone feature called Hold for Me, which allows Google Assistant to handle calls when you're put on hold for lengthy periods.

You can preorder the Pixel 5 for $699 online now. It ships later in October. The Pixel 4A 5G costs $499

Watch this: Everything just announced at Google's Pixel 5 event