Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL were unveiled back in October and were positioned as decidedly premium smartphones.
The flagship duo both sported improved designs from their respective predecessors and featured faster internal components.
While the Pixel 3 was certainly not priced as high as many competing flagships such as the Galaxy Note 9 or Huawei Mate 20 Pro, it appears Google may soon launch a more affordable version of the hardware in an effort to increase sales for the product line overall.
Such a move could be similar to that executed by Apple last year when it debuted the iPhone XR as a cheaper alternative to its more premium iPhone Xs and Xs Max.
A new report from Japanese outlet Nikkei, citing sources familiar with Google’s plans, has stated the firm is planning the grand unveiling of “its first lower-priced smartphone this year”.
The outlet said such a move has been designed to capitalise on a trend of customers increasingly opting to purchase more affordable smartphones rather than premium flagships, quoting from “industry sources”.
It was noted the more affordable version of the Pixel 3 would be priced lower than Apple Inc’s iPhone XR.
In the UK, the iPhone XR starts at £749, meaning the entry-level Pixel 3 is already cheaper than it.
However, it is worth mentioning in US markets the iPhone XR starts at $749 while the Pixel is priced from $799.
A cheaper model of the Pixel 3 could allow Google to radically undercut its American rival in terms of price.
The fresh report appears to add further credence to claims Google is planning to release a Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL Lite that first emerged last year.
Russian outlet Rozetked was the first to discuss the idea of a cheaper Pixel 3.
At the time, the publication showed claimed images of the handset.
The alleged Pixel 3 Lite was said to have a 5.56-inch LCD display, 4GB of RAM and be powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 670 processor.
The handset was shown with noticeably large bezels on its top and bottom.
Moreover, the claimed phone also appeared to have a plastic back panel.
It is worth noting the handset was displayed to have a headphone jack, a characteristic not present on Google’s more premium Pixel 3 models.
At the time it was also emphasised the single camera on the back of the phone would be as capable as that offered by its more premium brothers.
It has been claimed the Pixel 3 Lite could cost between $400 (£310.17) and $500 (£387.71).
However, it is worth noting nothing about either a Pixel 3 or Pixel 3 XL Lite have been officially confirmed by Google.