Earlier today, Google announced the Pixel 5 and Pixel 4a 5G, both of which Verizon (Engadget’s parent company) will carry. But if you want to purchase the latter through the carrier, you’ll have to pay $600 or $25 per month on a two-year Verizon Device payment plan to get the device. That’s $100 more than the $499 Google plans to sell the Pixel 4a 5G through its website when the phone goes on sale next month.
You can chalk up the price hike on the fact Verzion’s version of the phone, the Pixel 4a 5G UW, has additional radios and antennas to take advantage of the carrier’s mmWave 5G buildouts. If you live in a city with mmWave coverage, you’ll get access to blazing-fast download speeds, but finding those areas can feel like a scavenger hunt. Here’s the other thing. For a $100 more, you can buy the Pixel 5 through Verizon and get a phone with a bigger battery, IP68 water resistance, Qi wireless charging, a 90Hz display and more RAM. Oh, and it too can connect to Verizon’s mmWave network.
At least for the time being, Verizon will be the only way you’ll be able to get the Pixel 4a 5G in white, with a footnote on Google’s website noting the unlocked variant will only be available in black at launch.
Verizon will begin taking pre-orders for the Pixel 4a 5G UW on October 29th, with general availability starting on November 19th. In the meantime, you can pre-order the Pixel 5 through the carrier today.