Google finally made the Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL official today after a huge amount of leaks, but that’s not going to matter to Indian consumers interested in these devices. That’s because, unlike past Pixels, these two are not going to be officially sold in India.
Google cites the Soli radar tech that powers the Motion Sense gestures as the culprit. Soli works in the 60GHz frequency and the Indian government doesn’t currently allow for public use of that. This means that, were Google to launch the Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL in the subcontinent, it would have to do that with Soli disabled.
And that would mean no touch-less gestures, but also no face unlock, because the Soli hardware is required for that as well. Since the new Pixels don’t have a fingerprint sensor or any other additional type of biometric authentication built-in, it’s safe to say that the user experience would suffer greatly. Not to mention that you’d have an entirely useless huge ‘forehead’ bezel above the screen.
So with all this in mind, Google’s decision to abandon the launch of its newest phones in India seems rather reasonable. It probably doesn’t hurt a lot financially ether, as sales numbers of previous Pixels in the subcontinent probably haven’t been outstanding anyway.