The good news is that Google shipped a total of 3.9 million Pixel and Pixel 2 smartphones in 2017, which is double the figure that the company achieved in the previous year.
The bad news, however, is that Google Pixel devices have barely made a dent in the smartphone market, especially compared to the sales figures of Apple's iPhone.
Google Pixel Sales Improve, But Still Lacking
According to IDC's Francisco Jeronimo, the 3.9 million units shipped of Pixel and Pixel 2 smartphones in 2017 is just a fraction of the smartphone market, which sees total shipments of 1.5 billion units per year.
Pixel smartphone sales are certainly heading in the right direction, validating the company's recent push into making Google hardware. However, looking at the big picture, Google still has a lot of catching up to do.
In comparison, according to IDC, Apple shipped a total of 215.8 million iPhones in 2017, equivalent to about 4.15 million units a week. This would mean that Apple shipped more iPhones per week than the number of Google Pixel and Pixel 2 smartphones for the whole of 2017.
The Google Pixel smartphones were supposed to be Android's answer to Apple's iPhone. The devices come with powerful specifications and a bloatware-free experience with Google's mobile operating system that make them arguably the best Android smartphones in the market. However, despite a very capable product and a lavish marketing campaign, customers are apparently not yet getting on board the Pixel train.
Why Can't Google Pixel Catch Up To The iPhone?
Google Pixel smartphones are nice, but that would not matter much if customers are not able to purchase them. The Pixel and Pixel 2 devices are only available in up to eight countries, compared to the iPhone X, for example, that may be purchased in 70 countries. In addition, there are 499 Apple Stores spread out in 22 countries, while Google relies on occasional pop-ups and its online Google Store, with no constant physical retail presence. Lastly, Google Pixel smartphones are only available through Verizon, while the iPhone models are available in all carriers.
No smartphone comes without any issues, but if Google wants to make a bigger splash in the market, its Pixel devices will need to come as close as possible to being perfect. Perhaps then, Google could think of how to make the smartphones more accessible to everyone.