Everything You Need To Know About The Google Pixel 7a
It’s all go at Google – at their recent developer’s conference, they unveiled a host of new tech ready for launch, including their first foldable phone the Google Pixel Fold, and the first Pixel tablet in eight years. But the release of interest to the mass smartphone market is the Google Pixel 7a.
We expected a pared-down version of the Google Pixel 7, which was released late last year. And while it’s still a fraction of the price, they’ve delivered plenty of top-end features to the camera, display and battery life of their budget model, effectively making the 7 available for a cut price.
Keen to see what value for money looks like? Read on for all you need to know about the Google Pixel 7a.
Google Pixels are known for their solid camera performance, and the 7a packs in plenty of their premium features, like the ability to unblur photos in your library, take pics that bring out the best in all skin tones, and deliver excellent photos even in low light.
The phone has three lenses: a 64MP wide camera as the main rear one, a 13MP ultra-wide lens, and a 13MP selfie camera. You can capture 4K video from every camera too. The lenses are not as high-spec as the Pixel 7 or 7 Pro, but still a worthy improvement from the Pixel 6a. Note that as usual for a Pixel, there’s no telephoto lens, but the automatic 2x zoom is a good working compromise.
At 4385mAh, the battery is actually smaller than the 6a’s (4410 mAh). But Google say it lasts up to three days in Extreme Battery Saver mode, which means it lasts longer – likely due to improvements in operating efficiency with the Tensor G2 chip. It supports speeds of 18W with wired charging (on a par with 20W for the Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro).
When it comes to wireless charging, there’s good news – the feature has finally come to the ‘A’ series of Pixels – and bad news – it charges at speeds of 7.5W. That’s notably slower than the 7 or 7 Pro, but just a minor inconvenience all in all.
Design and display
There’s no mistaking the Pixel series – its simple, clean design mean you could spot one from a distance. The Pixel 7a follows suit, and comes in four colours: charcoal, sea (a pale blue), snow (white) and coral: a pink that’s only available from the Google Store. It’s a durable piece of kit, with a metal camera bar, Gorilla Glass 3 on the display, and a dust and water protection rating of IP67, meaning it’s fairly sturdy.
The screen is OLED and 6.1” across, which makes it slightly smaller than the Pixel 7’s 6.4” (but that’s no bad thing for one-handed texting). Happily for gamers and telly-watchers, the refresh rate has been bumped up from 60Hz to 90Hz, making for smoother on-screen experience. It’s still not the 120Hz that many other mid-range phones have, so that’s worth bearing in mind if it’s important to you.
The big change with the 7a is that it has Google’s own Tensor G2 chip: the same tech that powers the 7 and 7 Pro. It’s not the best chip on the market and that might cause issues in the premium models, but it has all the performance you’d need to power a mid-range phone.
There’s a nice range of features including face unlock, 5G, Bluetooth 5.3 and Wi-Fi 6E. It’s also dual SIM, accepting one eSIM and one physical SIM. It’s set to run on the latest Android 13 operating system (OS). Making the offering simple, there’s only one option for storage: 128GB, and 8GB of RAM.
As is standard for Google Pixels, you get three major OS updates, and five years of security patches, making it a phone that will last for years.
Price and availability
The Google Pixel 7a is a snip at £449. It might be £50 more expensive than the 6a on release, but not only do we have to contend with inflation, but really, the 7a is more comparable to the Google Pixel 7, currently priced from £599. It’s available now.
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