Google has introduced new Pixel 8 smartphones, but you won’t be able to buy them officially in Ukraine. Why is the big tech corporation still ignoring Ukraine?
I would like to say that Google was a very pleasant surprise at its conference, and the new Google Pixel 8 and Pixel 8 Pro will revolutionise the smartphone market. I would like to be happy, but I can’t, for several reasons. One of them is that we should separate hype from reality and wait a bit to see how the phones perform in tests. We already remember last year’s problems with Pixel 7. Yes, even the iPhone 15 has a lot of problems at launch. But, over time, almost all problems are eliminated.
Another thing, however, is that the new Pixels are not officially coming to Ukraine, and there are no signs that this situation will change any time soon.
New Pixels may be interesting, but not for Ukrainians
Why do I want to buy a Google smartphone? There are many reasons, one of them being that I want a smartphone from one of the most innovative mobile device manufacturers. In addition, owners of Google smartphones don’t have to think much about how to download Android 14 to their Pixels. I specifically watched the presentation of the new Google Pixel 8 and Android 14. Of course, I am excited about the premiere of Android 14, because it will have several features that will make using a smartphone even more convenient. I liked the updated wallpaper selector the most. I was shocked to see how it works and what can be done with the support of artificial intelligence in this area. The feature makes it easy to change your wallpaper to match your preferred content and update it quickly. Simply enter the content of what you want on your wallpaper and then choose one of the suggestions created by artificial intelligence. Google showed an image of a house covered with indigo plants as an example. Android 14 also supports HDR images in Ultra HDR mode. This mode highlights vivid colours, makes highlights brighter and shadows darker. In addition, Ultra HDR displays high-resolution photos without changing the original image quality. There are a lot of innovations, but I don’t want to talk about them, because my article is about something else.
It is worth noting that the new Android 14 became available for Pixels literally immediately after the presentation. When will this happen on devices other than Google Pixel? Well, as always, it depends on the manufacturers themselves, which is one of the most frustrating things about the Android world, which, by the way, is not the case with iOS. I probably won’t be waiting too long because I’m currently using a Samsung smartphone, but I’ll still have to wait a bit for the official Android 14 for Samsung OneUI. It would be different if I had a Pixel. But it’s a pity I can’t buy it in Ukraine.
At least not in the official Google store, which ignores Ukraine. Let me remind you that in the US, the basic version costs $699, but this probably includes taxes, so it’s not very rosy either. In addition, delivery from the US will take at least 2 weeks, and probably with adventures, as usual. Of course, I can choose to buy, for example, the German version, where the Pixel 8 with 128 GB costs 799 euros. I would need to ask my friends in Germany to buy and send me the Pixel 8, for example, using the services of Nova Poshta. But I don’t really want to bother my friends with my problems. For some reason, I don’t want to buy a “grey” phone, because I’m not used to enriching intermediaries. In addition, they will have Pixel 8 no sooner than in a month, and I’m not sure that these will be new smartphones, not refurbished versions, or even used ones.
At this price, I could buy a OnePlus 11 5G or even a Samsung Galaxy S23, but I want to buy a Pixel. Mainly because of the updates, which are now significantly expanded, and the new features that come to Google smartphones as a priority. Perhaps it’s a matter of local “patriotism”, but until Google officially appears in Ukraine, I’m not going to buy their smartphone. Pixels that appear in Ukrainian stores are even more expensive than on the official website, which is understandable. I don’t see the point in overpaying for the fact that Google hasn’t given Ukraine a wide berth. The situation is almost similar in neighbouring Poland, where there is still no official Google store.
How would the arrival of Pixel in Ukraine change the market situation?
I’m looking forward to when Google really starts to take our market seriously. Of course, at first, few users will choose Pixel over, say, Samsung or Xiaomi, but this may change over time. Provided that we get the same as the US or the western part of Europe. Not to mention the fact that new features in Google apps are also initially available to US residents, but nothing can be done about that. This situation is obviously due to the fact that it is not profitable for Google to invest in another market. But does one of the world’s largest companies not have the funds to launch a Ukrainian website where you could order Google devices?
It’s clear that we live in the 21st century, where everything can be done online, and you can buy a smartphone through Amazon, but this is also associated with some rules and nuances. I’m sure that if we start to be taken seriously, a Pixel will appear in my pocket, but I feel that, unfortunately, this may not happen. There are a lot of people like me, but for some reason, Google considers it unnecessary to meet potential customers.
Why does Google still not take Ukraine seriously?
Some would say that the main reason is the war in Ukraine, and they would be partly right. Yes, the fighting on our territory is still ongoing, with shelling of Ukrainian cities happening almost every day. However, it is Google’s loyalty and the emergence of their official store that would help support our country. In this way, the American company would show the whole world that Ukraine should be taken seriously. It would be a very worthy step from Google.
Others will remind me that Google is not the only company that does not have an official store in Ukraine. Apple’s iPhones have a similar problem, but at least they are officially present in Ukrainian electronics stores. Although there is still no official Apple store. It is also worth mentioning that Microsoft also ignores the Ukrainian market. Yes, some services are available in Ukraine, but it is also impossible to buy Microsoft Surface officially here. That’s why we still have grey Pixel and Microsoft Surface on our shelves. That is why I will refrain from buying the new Pixel 8 this year.