Google Pixel 7A
Good information, Pixel followers: the Pixel 7 simply received $100 cheaper. Well, not likely. But it’d as properly have. Even although Google nonetheless expenses $599 for its flagship Pixel, it simply launched the $499 (£449, AU$749) Pixel 7A — which incorporates most of the identical advantages at a cheaper price. (See our full Pixel 7A preorder information for the present finest offers, together with a $50 present card at Amazon, a $50 low cost with service activation at Best Buy and a free case and headphones on the Google Store.)
Google introduced the Pixel 7A at Google I/O, its annual developer convention the place it sometimes introduces new merchandise and updates to current ones. Other than the Pixel 7A, which is accessible now, Google additionally debuted the Pixel Fold, a brand new Pixel Tablet and a slew of latest AI-powered options for search and different providers.
Clearly, Google took suggestions on the Pixel 6A under consideration with its newest entry-level cellphone. The Pixel 7A positive aspects a 90Hz display screen for smoother graphics and scrolling, together with wi-fi charging and face unlock. Though these will not be must-haves for everybody, they’re widespread options that the Pixel 6A lacked.
Otherwise, the Pixel 7A has the identical Tensor G2 processor because the Pixel 7, a brand new 64-megapixel principal digicam and a 6.1-inch display screen similar to its predecessor. Since the Pixel 7A runs on Google’s cellular processor, you may count on most of the identical Pixel-specific options seen on different gadgets, just like the cellphone app’s Hold for Me setting, Google’s Recorder app and the corporate’s Real Tone picture processing tech, which is supposed to render pores and skin tones extra realistically.
Taken collectively, these adjustments assist bridge the hole between the Pixel 7A and the Pixel 7. At the identical time, it may possibly additionally make the shopping for choice extra difficult for those who’re searching for a brand new Pixel machine.
Google Pixel 7A appears to be like rather a lot just like the Pixel 7
Like the Pixel 6A, the Pixel 7A borrows design cues from its pricier predecessor. That contains the digicam bar, which has a matte metallic end that nearly matches the one on the Pixel 7. The Pixel 7A’s digicam strip is barely thinner than the Pixel 7’s, marking one of many few noticeable bodily variations between the 2 gadgets. The Pixel 7A can also be accessible in several shade choices in contrast with the Pixel 7. You can choose up Google’s cheaper cellphone in white, black, mild blue or vivid orange, whereas the Pixel 7 is available in white, mild yellow or black.
The Pixel 7A is enticing for a cellphone on this worth vary, very like the Pixel 6A. Part of me wonders if Google’s method to design with its A-series telephones motivated Samsung to up its recreation, too. The Galaxy A54 5G, which prices $450 and is Samsung’s direct competitor to the Pixel 7A, has a shiny end that makes it really feel extra premium than final 12 months’s Galaxy A53 5G.
The Pixel 7A has a 6.1-inch display screen; the identical dimension because the Pixel 6A’s and barely smaller than the 6.3-inch display screen on the Pixel 7. If you favor smaller telephones, you could discover the Pixel 7A simpler to make use of with one hand in contrast with the Pixel 7. I personally discover 6.1 inches to be the appropriate display screen dimension for a cellphone, because it supplies sufficient area to comfortably learn and watch movies with out feeling overwhelming to function.
The greatest change Google made to the Pixel 7A’s display screen is its skill to modify the refresh charge between 60Hz and 90Hz relying on what’s on the display screen. With this setting turned on, navigating the working system and scrolling by way of apps felt clean and slick. Truthfully, I did not all the time discover an enormous distinction in contrast with the Pixel 6A, which has a normal 60Hz display screen.
But there have been some instances when flipping by way of my Twitter feed felt noticeably speedy on the Pixel 7A. Regardless, it is nice to see Google incorporating extra premium options into its inexpensive gadgets, particularly as increased refresh charges are beginning to change into the norm.
It additionally helps Google keep extra aggressive with Samsung, which frequently trickles high-end options all the way down to its personal price range Galaxy telephones. The Galaxy A54 5G can enhance its refresh charge as much as 120Hz, for instance, much like Samsung’s high-end Galaxy S gadgets.
Google additionally says it bumped up the Pixel 7A’s brightness, which might handle one in all my greatest complaints in regards to the Pixel 6A. Unfortunately, I did not discover a lot of a distinction. Though I had no drawback utilizing the Pixel 7A at 50% brightness or decrease indoors, I nonetheless needed to crank it as much as between 75% and 100% outside.
Both the Pixel 7A and Galaxy A54 5G are able to reaching 1,000 nits of brightness at their most setting. However, even at decrease settings, the Galaxy A54 5G’s display screen seemed noticeably brighter alongside the Pixel 7A’s.
Pixel 7A’s digicam takes nice pictures
The Pixel 7A has a powerful digicam that produced outcomes much like the Pixel 7’s. The Pixel 7A has a 64-megapixel principal digicam and a 13-megapixel ultrawide digicam, as proven beneath, each of which have a better decision than the Pixel 7’s principal and ultrawide digicam.
Pixel 7A digicam vs. Pixel 7, Pixel 6A and Galaxy A54 5G
|Google Pixel 7A||Google Pixel 7||Google Pixel 6A||Samsung Galaxy A54 5G|
|Rear digicam||64MP principal; 13MP ultrawide||50MP principal; 12MP ultrawide||12.2MP principal; 12MP ultrawide||50MP principal; 12MP ultrawide; 5MP macro|
|Zoom||8x digital zoom||8x digital zoom||7x digital zoom||10x digital zoom|
Even although the Pixel 7A’s principal digicam has extra megapixels than the step-up mannequin, Google says the Pixel 7’s principal digicam is extra mild delicate and, extra importantly, has a bigger sensor. But more often than not, I might barely inform the distinction between pictures taken on the Pixel 7A and the Pixel 7. There had been some situations the place the Pixel 7 captured extra element, however I needed to zoom in on my monitor to inform. I even thought the Pixel 7A did a greater job than the Pixel 7 at capturing a portrait of my husband close to a window in a mixture of indoor and outside lighting.
The Pixel 6A has an excellent digicam that snaps crisp and colourful pictures, particularly for a cellphone underneath $400. However, I seen the Pixel 7A generally uncovered the topic higher, as proven within the zoomed picture of a cease signal beneath and the picture of my husband. The Pixel 6A was additionally noticeably slower than the Pixel 7A when taking pictures in Night Mode. (Since the Pixel 6A was slower, my cat moved midshot, as you may see beneath).
I typically choose the Pixel 7A’s digicam over the Galaxy A54’s, since Samsung’s cellphone made colours look over uncovered when taking pictures outside. But the Galaxy A54 5G carried out properly in just a few of my assessments, particularly when taking pictures low-light pictures. It additionally has a more in-depth digital zoom than the Pixel 7A, Pixel 7 and Pixel 6A, although its picture got here out grainier.
The Pixel 7A’s 13-megapixel entrance digicam can take an excellent selfie. During my testing in opposition to the Pixel 7, Pixel 6A and Galaxy A54, the 7A’s selfie was my favourite as a result of it had the correct mix of element, shade accuracy and softening to make my face look flattering.
The Pixel 7A can shoot 4K video at as much as 60 frames per second, similar to the Pixel 7, and photographs shot on the 2 telephones seemed very comparable.
You additionally get most of the identical digicam taking pictures modes, backend tech and enhancing methods discovered on the Pixel 7, equivalent to Magic Eraser, Photo Unblur and Real Tone, which you’ll be able to learn extra about in my Pixel 7 evaluate. However, the Pixel 7A does not have the Pixel 7’s Action Pan, which focuses sharply on a transferring topic and blurs the background. But it does have Long Exposure mode, in contrast to the Pixel 6A, which has neither of these options.
The backside line: Even although the Pixel 7 technically has a extra superior digicam in line with Google, the Pixel 7A’s digicam will likely be simply advantageous for informal photographers. The Pixel 7A ought to be a lot satisfactory for the common cellphone person who primarily desires to take nice pictures of holidays, household gatherings and social events. Those who really need one of the best digicam on a Pixel cellphone ought to go for the Pixel 7 Pro, which has a devoted telephoto lens and different extras.
Pixel 7A has strong battery life and positive aspects wi-fi charging
The Pixel 7A can get by way of a full day on a single cost, although battery life will all the time fluctuate relying on the cellphone’s settings and which apps you are utilizing. My expertise diversified just a little relying on my circumstances.
On a lighter day of use spent principally at house, I used the Pixel 7A for primary duties like checking electronic mail, enjoying video games for 10 minutes, exporting just a few movies and taking pictures for roughly 20 minutes. I had 41% of my battery left after about 16 hours.
But on a busier day, once I commuted into the workplace, streamed music for about an hour throughout my subway journey and made a video name, the battery was down to twenty% after about 13 hours of use. I attempted to maintain the brightness at 50% on each days, however there have been instances on each events once I set it increased whereas outside. During my testing, I additionally left the excessive refresh charge setting turned on and the always-on show possibility switched off — each of these can impression battery efficiency.
I ran a 45-minute endurance check that consists of streaming video, making a video name, enjoying video games, looking social media, and common miscellaneous use to see how a lot these actions would drain the battery after a full cost. The Pixel 7A had 92% of its battery left after that check, which places it on par with the Galaxy S23 (91%) however decrease than the Pixel 7 (94%).
I additionally streamed a YouTube video to see how a lot doing so would drain the battery over the course of three hours. The Pixel 7A carried out barely higher than the Pixel 7 on this check, although the outcomes had been shut.
Pixel 7A vs. Pixel 7 battery check
|Pixel 7A||Pixel 7|
One main facet new to the Pixel 7A is wi-fi charging. Though the flexibility to energy up your cellphone by resting it on a appropriate charger has been commonplace on many telephones for years, it is sometimes lacking from budget-minded gadgets. The Pixel 6A does not have wi-fi charging, for instance, and neither does the Galaxy A54 5G.
The Pixel 7A’s wi-fi charging velocity is slower than the Pixel 7’s (7.5 watts versus 12W on the Pixel 7 with a appropriate qi-certified charger), and it took half-hour to cost from 37% to 47%.
Pixel 7A efficiency and different options
The Pixel 7A runs on Google’s Tensor G2 processor, which feels clean and fluid when performing day by day duties, whether or not that is enjoying a cellular recreation, scrolling by way of apps or snapping pictures.
Performance isn’t a priority on main smartphone releases from firms like Apple, Google, Samsung and OnePlus. But it is price mentioning for a cellphone at this worth, as a result of cheaper telephones can generally include efficiency hiccups, as was the case once I reviewed the Galaxy A53 5G final 12 months.
Everyday efficiency felt speedy, however I did discover that the Pixel 7A exported video a bit extra slowly than Google’s different Pixels and Samsung’s Galaxy A54 5G. On common, it took about 22.5 seconds for the Pixel 7A to export a 30-second 4K video to 1080p in Adobe Premiere Rush, which is slower than the Pixel 6A (20.2 seconds), Pixel 7 (18.3 seconds) and Galaxy A54 5G (15.6 seconds).
Still, that Tensor G2 chip is extra in regards to the Pixel-specific options you get, moderately than velocity alone. Those embody Google’s Recorder app, Live Translate and Photo Unblur. Google’s Pixel telephones even have some useful phone-calling options, like Hold for Me, which permits Google to attend on the road in your stead. Tricks like these assist set Pixel telephones other than different Android gadgets, although Samsung is attempting to catch up by bringing extra Galaxy-specific methods to its personal gadgets.
The Pixel 7A launches with Android 13 and can get three years of Android model updates and 5 years of safety updates. That matches the Pixel 7 and seven Pro, but it surely’s nonetheless behind Samsung, which pledges 4 generations of Android OS updates and 5 years of safety updates.
Pixel 7A, Pixel 7 or Pixel 6A: Which do you have to select?
Given all of the similarities between the Pixel 7 and 7A, deciding between the 2 may be difficult. Google is preserving final 12 months’s Pixel 6A within the lineup for a newly discounted worth of $349, making it a tempting alternative for these on a price range.
My recommendation? After spending just a few days with the Pixel 7A, I can not provide you with a compelling motive to decide on the Pixel 7 as an alternative. The Pixel 7A has the identical processor, an excellent principal digicam and the identical quantity of reminiscence and storage. By including wi-fi charging and a smoother display screen to the Pixel 7A, Google mounted the 2 main options the Pixel 6A was lacking.
The Pixel 6A nonetheless has a lot to supply at its new worth, together with a succesful digicam and Google’s Pixel-specific software program options. If you favor to save cash and do not thoughts sacrificing wi-fi charging, face unlock, and additional picture instruments like lengthy publicity mode, the Photo Unblur enhancing software and quicker evening mode seize, then the Pixel 6A remains to be a worthwhile alternative.
However, it is price contemplating Google’s software program replace cycle. Since the Pixel 7A launched later than the Pixel 7 and Pixel 6A, it will get Android model updates for an extended time period. That could possibly be motive to decide on the Pixel 7A over the 6A.
Pixel 7A total ideas
The Pixel 7A appears like one of the best worth for Pixel followers proper now. While you miss out on sure Pixel 7 extras, like battery share, the digicam’s Action Pan mode, a bigger display screen and barely quicker charging, none of these omissions appears like a deal-breaker. In my expertise, digicam efficiency is comparable between the 2 — definitely sufficient to fulfill the common particular person.
With the Pixel 7A, it is clear Google is leaning into aggressive pricing as a significant a part of its effort to convey extra Android customers into the world of Pixel. My solely concern is that Google could also be blurring the road a bit an excessive amount of between its A-series Pixel and common Pixel. Don’t get me unsuitable, I’m glad Google introduced a lot of the options I requested for to the Pixel 7A. It simply means I’ll expect extra from the Pixel 8.
How we check telephones
Every cellphone examined by CNET’s evaluations crew was truly utilized in the true world. We check a cellphone’s options, play video games and take pictures. We study the show to see if it is vivid, sharp and vibrant. We analyze the design and construct to see how it’s to carry and whether or not it has an IP-rating for water resistance. We push the processor’s efficiency to the extremes utilizing each standardized benchmark instruments like GeekBench and 3DMark, together with our personal anecdotal observations navigating the interface, recording high-resolution movies and enjoying graphically intense video games at excessive refresh charges.
All the cameras are examined in quite a lot of circumstances from vivid daylight to darkish indoor scenes. We check out particular options like evening mode and portrait mode and examine our findings in opposition to equally priced competing telephones. We additionally take a look at the battery life through the use of it day by day in addition to operating a collection of battery drain assessments.
We keep in mind extra options like assist for 5G, satellite tv for pc connectivity, fingerprint and face sensors, stylus assist, quick charging speeds, foldable shows amongst others that may be helpful. And we after all stability all of this in opposition to the worth to provide the verdict on whether or not that cellphone, no matter worth it’s, truly represents good worth.
Google Pixel 7A vs. Pixel 7, Pixel 6A
|Google Pixel 7A||Google Pixel 7||Google Pixel 6A|
|Display dimension, tech, decision, refresh charge||6.1-inch FHD OLED; as much as 90Hz refresh charge||6.3-inch OLED; FHD+; as much as 90Hz refresh charge||6.1-inch OLED; FHD+; 60Hz refresh charge|
|Dimensions (inches)||2.9x6x0.35 inches||6.1×2.9×0.34 inches||6×2.8×0.35 inches|
|Weight (ounces, grams)||6.8 ounces; 193 grams||6.9 ounces; 197 grams||6.3 ounces; 178 grams|
|Mobile software program (at launch)||Android 13||Android 13||Android 12|
|Camera||64MP principal; 13MP ultrawide||50MP principal; 12MP ultrawide||12.2MP large; 12MP ultrawide|
|Video seize||4K at 60fps||4K at 60fps||4K at 60fps|
|Processor||Google Tensor G2||Google Tensor G2||Google Tensor|
|RAM/storage||128GB + 8GB||128GB + 8GB||128GB + 6GB|
|Battery||4,385 mAh; wi-fi charging||4,355 mAh; wi-fi charging||4,410 mAh|
|Fingerprint sensor||Yes (underneath display screen)||Yes (underneath display screen)||Yes (underneath display screen)|
|Special options||Magic Eraser, Real Tone, Photo Unblur, Face Unblur, Long Exposure Mode, Hold for Me, Wait Times, Direct My Call, Live Translate||Magic Eraser, Photo Unblur, Real Tone, Face Unblur, Long Exposure Mode, Action Pan, Hold for Me, Wait Times, Direct My Call, Live Translate||Magic Eraser, Real Tone, Face Unblur, Hold for Me, Wait Times, Direct My Call, Live Translate|
|US worth off-contract||$499 ($549 for mmWave)||$599||$349|