The world's verdict on digital cameras
The Google Pixel 7a is a nice little device with useful functions. It might not be phone of the year, but it's certainly the best little phone on the market right now. Camera software, computing power and unbeatable price.
Perfect camera system
Long battery life
Value of money
Inconsistent fingerprint reader
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- Most important features
- Camera specifications
- Example images
The Google Pixel 7a might as well bebest camera phonecan be had for less than $500 / £500. It's both a great little smartphone and a timely reminder that a good phone doesn't have to cost the best part of a great one.
Order the Google Pixel 7a now
It's modeled after last year's Pixel 7 and 7 Pro, but it's actually the successor to the Pixel 6a. The "a" series is generally a cheaper version that was released almost a year later with limited specifications and features. This year, however, Google seems to have found a way to cram some of its best features into its more affordable handset.
However, there are still some limitations, such as a smaller screen (6.1 inches) and a refresh rate of 90 Hz instead of the Pixel 7 Pro's 120 Hz. There's also only an 8GB model with 128GB of storage available, but that's debatable if you're saving money as the Pixel 7a costs just $499/£449.
Rear Camera:64 MP breed, 13 MP ultrabreed
Front camera:13 MP breed
Editor:Google Tensor G2 (5nm)
Memory:128 GB of storage and 8 GB of RAM
Screen:6.1 inch FHD OLED screen
Dimensions:72,9 x 152,4 x 9,0
coloring:Charcoal, sea, snow and coral
See the bestcase Google Pixel 7a
Most important features
For a budget phone, the Pixel 7a has surprising quality; from facial recognition to the 64MP main camera lens, it's got more than you'd expect from a phone under $500. However, the two main features this year are both the size of the phone and the Tensor G2 processor.
It's the smallest Pixel 7 device currently on offer at just 152.4mm tall, and despite the shorter screen, it's an OLED panel that still delivers quality with a very responsive 90Hz refresh rate and crisp color coverage .
However, the inclusion of the Google Tensor G2 chip gives users the same innovative experience as the premium Pixel models. Real-time language translations, audio transcriptions, fast image editing, and the ever-helpful Google Assistant. This is definitely one of the most useful devices.
Construction and operation
Being the 'a' model of the Pixel 7, there are no design changes; in fact, it's hard to tell the difference between the 7a and the regular 7, with the former being just 0.2 inches shorter and a bit squarer. However, there are some material changes as recycled plastic has been used on the back cover. The housing and camera bar remain aluminum while the screen is equipped with Corning Gorilla Glass.
Smaller phones are better for those who like to handle them alone, as well as feel a bit more comfortable taking photos on the go. The obvious downside is that the user interface is smaller and things like the digital keyboard become a bit more difficult to use. It's not a big deal, although I've noticed typing slows down while moving.
In a relatively short time, Google Pixel has become synonymous with great photography. This is largely due to the Tensor chip, which enables a range of rapid image enhancements and innovative editing software. The 7a has a 64MP main lens for nice, sharp photos and a 13MP ultra-wide angle lens to capture more of the frame. There's also a high-resolution feature that works like a telephoto lens, but with an 8x optical zoom it's nowhere near as impressive as the Huawei P50 Pro or Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra.
The Magic Eraser feature is again the star of the "tools" section, which helps you remove unwanted objects in the background. However, there is also a "camouflage" function that can be used to change the color of an object to blend in with the background. The goal is not to remove them, but to make them less visible in the photo. Like the original eraser, it isn't perfect and sometimes just turns clothes brown or green.
Night mode on the Pixel 7a is good, but works best in some scenarios. Neon light scenes produce the best results, while normal low-light settings tend to produce grainy images. I am satisfied with the speed with which the images are captured; processing takes only a second. The 7 Pro's shot took much longer, but the 7a delivers the same brightness and color in low light, seemingly in a third of the time.
For video, you record in 4K resolution at 30 or 60 frames per second, all with good image stabilization. The slow motion feature is probably the best feature here, although it works best at x1.8 rather than the standard x1.4.
Below are some sample photos taken with the Google Pixel 7a.
Thanks to the Tensor G2 processor, the Pixel 7a really is like thatwiseTelephone. This is a chip developed by Google that can handle many of the phone's AI-powered functions, such as live translation or complex image editing, in the device in real time.
On the Geekbench 6 website, the Pixel 7a has a score of 1405 for single-core and 3436 for multi-threaded loads. That's almost the same as the Pixel 7, although it's nowhere near the iPhone 14 and Apple's A15 Bionic processor. But that doesn't really explain what each phone can do in terms of processing speed.
For real world use the 7a is a great phone that really makes life easier. No other phone can match the Google Assistant, making viewing and controlling your device so easy. From transcribing audio to text messages to translating menus into different languages, it's more useful than any phone I've had the pleasure of testing.
The battery is also very good; it lasted almost 24 hours with my excessive social media scrolling, which is about the same as the larger Pixel 7 Pro. No iPhone model will do and in my opinion the only device that will beat these times is the more expensive Samsung Galaxy S23.
Charging is less impressive, with 18Wh of "fast" charging and 7.5Wh of wireless charging - neither was particularly fast. It managed to go from under 10% to over 70% in about 50 minutes, which is a bit bad for busy people.
The initial setup of the device was also very frustrating for me as I was repeatedly unable to transfer my data from my old phone. In the end, I just did the painful task of setting up the device with no data transfer (of course you can get all of this from Google backup). This could be a first problem since the phone is very new and this is something Google can probably fix with an update.
The fingerprint reader is also a bit inconsistent. Pixel devices are becoming notorious for software problems and the fingerprint reader is a common culprit. It's not a huge deal, but it's annoying enough to just stop using it altogether - thankfully the facial recognition system is more consistent.
At 6.1 inches, the Google Pixel 7a is as small as a modern smartphone can be without compromising too much on quality. It's not as small as the iPhone SE, but it's still smaller than what most consumers are used to. This may not be for those with huge hands or those who want a big, bright screen for streaming.
However, it is a nice little device with useful features. It might not be the best phone of the year, but it certainly offers the best value for money right now; in terms of camera software, processing power and price, it is unbeatable. This is the best smartphone on the pound for the price of the pound.
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The smaller models ofiPhone'a 14ISamsung Galaxy S23it could be a direct competitor to the Pixel 7a, although both are at least $200 more expensive.
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Read more:Pixel 7a offers excellent value for money, read more aboutbest budget camera phonesibest android phones.
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Review Editor, ITPro
Bobby Hellard is an ITPro review editor and has been working on CloudPro and ChannelPro since 2018.
During his time at ITPro, Bobby has reported news for all major technology companies such as Apple, Microsoft, Amazon and Facebook. He mainly reviews hardware for smartphones, laptops and tablets, but you will also recognize him as the face of many an ITPro video review.
A journalist for ten years, he initially covered sports before focusing on technology at ITPro. He holds titles with Independent, Vice and The Business Briefing.
Please contact him at the firstname.lastname@example.org find him on Twitter: @bobbyhellard