/Google Pixel 3a & 3aXL an Affordable version of Pixel 3 with Same Camera
Google Pixel 3a

Google Pixel 3a & 3aXL an Affordable version of Pixel 3 with Same Camera

Google has also now entered in the mid-range smartphone market with the launch of the GooglPixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL two smartphones. Here is everything you need to know about the new Pixel 3a and pixel 3a XL including specs, review, price and availability.

The Google Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL will be available at a price of Rs 39,999 and Rs 44,999 respectively or $300 to $500.

Here I will going to break all unwritten rule of tech reviews and tell you the ending right from top to bottom: if you want to buy a new smartphone that costs between $300 and $500 or under 45,000 INR, you should consider Pixel 3A or Pixel 3A XL. It is the best phone in that price range, and it’s competitive with more expensive phones in one very important way: The Pixel 3A has a great camera.

For the past few years, buying a new smartphone has become a very hefty task: if you wanted a good camera, you needed to spend at least 600 dollars or 50,000 INR. And in market there are not lot of phones available in Premium Mid-segment price range that offer complete package. As Flagship killers has already came in market all thanks to OnePlus but Camera Killer smartphone was still a dream until Pixel 3a arrived.

In 8 years of reviewing phones, I am not sure if I’ve ever been able to write the following sentence: a $400 phone has a camera that’s among the best you can get on any smartphone right now. The below pic I took from Pixel 3a and trust me no everyone was shock is it really taken by it.

Google Pixel 3a XL Night Scape Mode
Google Pixel 3a XL Night Scape Mode
Google PIXEL 3A
Prons

• Low price
• Excellent camera
• Stock Android Version guaranteed 3 Years updates

Cons

• Slow processor
• No wireless charging
• Not water resistant

 

Google PIXEL 3A XL
Prons

• Low price
• Excellent camera
• Clean Google version of Android

Cons

• Slow processor Snapdragon 670 we were expecting at least 712 SoC
• No wireless charging
• No IPX rating hence not water resistant

In Initial expression the Pixel 3A phones look nearly identical to the most expensive Pixel 3. The 3A models are just a little bit taller, which might be due to the extra space needed to place 3.5mm headphone jack on the top. The bottom speakers are down-firing instead of front-facing and call answering speaker works as dual speaker mode too, but otherwise, the aesthetics are extremely similar to the Pixel 3.

They have the same matte / glossy back with a fingerprint sensor circle in the middle of them. The screen sizes are very close though the 3A XL doesn’t have the notch that we see on Pixel 3 XL maybe be because of thick bezel on top and the 3A phones even use OLED panels under the glass. These phones don’t look or feel cheap at all even though they have plastic bodies instead of metal. (Like everyone else, Google calls them “polycarbonate.”) The 3A and 3A XL come in black, white, or a new color called “purple-ish”.

Pixel phones run Google’s Stock Android, which is generally simpler and easier to understand than the variants you get from Samsung, LG, or Huawei. It’s more aggressive at pushing some Google services than those other phones, but the trade-off is you are guaranteed to get the latest Android updates as soon as they are available for three years from the time the phone is released.

Pixel 3a Camera

The Pixel 3A takes photos that are nearly indistinguishable from what you get out of a Pixel 3, which, until very recently, was the undisputed best camera on a phone. It is among the best smartphone cameras on the market today. It’s better than the camera on the iPhone XR, and it’s in the same league as (if not better than) the cameras on the Galaxy S10 and the iPhone XS.

The 12.2-megapixel sensor and f/1.8 lens on the back are the same as the Pixel 3, as is the single 8-megapixel selfie cam on the front. The only hardware difference is that the Pixel 3A lacks Google’s custom Pixel Visual Core processor, so it has to do its image processing on the main CPU and GPU.

That change may lead to some different image processing choices, but if so, they’re super hard for me to spot. The main difference is that images take longer to save. The camera takes about two seconds to fully launch from the lock screen, but after that, it has an instant shutter. It also supports all the same camera features as the Pixel 3: Night Sight, dancing AR cartoons, Top Shot, and the new Time lapse feature coming to all Pixel phones.

We did a bit of that, comparing the Pixel 3A to the Pixel 3. A lot of the differences we saw could be explained away simply by how difficult it is to take two identical photos with different devices in the real world. Forced to decide, I’d say the Pixel 3 photos seem very slightly better in contrast and detail in some cases. But the reality is this: without Adobe Lightroom, a calibrated monitor, and a photography expert talking you through the differences, you probably won’t notice them.

There are other cameras that have bested the Pixel 3 in some ways. Notably, the Huawei P30 Pro has a better zoom and mystifyingly good low-light shots. As for video, I couldn’t really discern that much of a difference between the Pixel 3 and the 3A. But that’s not entirely good news, as the Pixel 3 can’t quite stand up to iPhones and Galaxy phones for video quality.

But and I really do hate to keep harping on this all of those phones cost about twice as much as the Pixel 3A. I cannot stress enough how remarkable it is to have a camera this good on a phone at this price.

There is one important photo difference between the Pixel 3A and the Pixel 3: free backups to Google Photos. On the Pixel 3, you get free unlimited backups of the original resolution photos you’ve taken with the phone. The Pixel 3A is limited to free “high quality” backups, and it makes you pay for more storage if you upload too many original quality photos, just like any other phone. I suppose that’s one way to help get to that $399 price, but I think it’s a cheap move.

By now you’re probably thinking: minimalistic design phone, great price, good software, great camera… so what’s its lacking? Well, there are a few big ones and lots of little ones. Every smartphone — especially every inexpensive smartphone has some downside. Google had to pick some battles to win and some to lose to hit this price point. If you are not buying a Flagship phone then here is what Pixel3a offers.

GooglPIXEL 3A / 3A XL SPECS

• Display: 5.6 inches, 2220 x 1080 (3A); 6 inches, 2160 x 1080 (3A XL)
• Dragontrail Glass
• Size and Weight: 6.0 x 2.8 x 0.3 inches, 147g (3A); 6.3 x 3.0 x 0.3 inches, 167g (3A XL)
• Battery: 3,000mAh (3A); 3,700mAh (3A XL)
• Memory: 4GB LPDDR4x RAM
• Storage: 64GB
• Processor: Qualcomm Snapdragon 670: 2.0GHz + 1.7GHz, Adreno 615 Graphics
• Rear camera: 12.2-megapixel with optical + electronic image stabilization; f/1.8 aperture
• Front camera: 8-megapixel with f/2.0 aperture, 84-degree field of view

Google Pixel 3a XL Specification
Google Pixel 3a XL Specification
CPU

The Pixel 3A comes with Snapdragon 670SoC it is not as fast as other phones are there in this price range. You will absolutely notice it when you’re opening an app for the first time in a while because it will take a second or so longer to load than it would on more expensive phones. When you take a photo that requires more intense processing – like HDR or portrait – that will take longer, too. Webpages tend to load in instead of snapping instantly into place. You’ll notice it, especially if you’re coming from a relatively recent high-end phone.

And then you won’t – or at least I didn’t. I’m a longtime Pixel user, and within minutes of using the phone, I wasn’t put off by the lag. It didn’t occur to me that I was using a phone with a slower processor because I just never perceived a lag. I don’t think I’m being pinpointing here, either. I’ve shown this phone to several of my colleagues and asked if it felt slow, and the universal response has been “I guess, maybe? But it seems totally fine to me.”

The Pixel 3A uses a Qualcomm Snapdragon 670 processor, which is a new mid range processor that’s a bit of an overachiever. It’s not as fast as a Snapdragon 845 (Pixel 3) or 855 (Galaxy S10 and lots of other 2019 phones). It’s nowhere near as fast as the processor in the iPhone XR or XS.

Still, once an app is up and running, it’s just as good as it would be on a Pixel 3. Heck, I even managed to stay alive for several half-hour PUBG mobile games without adjusting away from the default high graphics settings.

But at this price point we were expecting Google could have implemented Snapdragon 712 SoC which will surely make the Google Pixel 3a to sell like hot cake. As it is good processor and there will be hike in performance as well there will be no lag what so ever.

One note of caution: The Pixel 3 has earned a reputation in the Android community for no lag what so ever. Over time, lots of phones tend to slow down. If you have a phone that already starts slower than a flagship out of the gate, it could be a risk that it won’t have the staying power of a more expensive phone.

Display

A great screen is a great part of phone mostly when phone is considered to be “premium,” and it’s a big part of what you’re paying for. The Pixel 3A doesn’t go in for any of Super Amoled Panels, but it is, nevertheless, a better screen than you would normally get on a phone at this price range. It’s OLED, for one thing, which means that you get perfectly black blacks and an always-on display to show you the time and notifications. The front panel may be surrounded by a plastic rail, but it is real hardened glass. It’s just that it’s Dragontrail glass instead of Corning Gorilla Glass. Unfortunately, I have no idea yet if that means it’s more crack or scratch prone.

I noticed a bit of variation in screen temperatures across the Pixel 3A, 3A XL, and the regular Pixel 3 modes. The 5.6-inch Pixel 3A was a little warmer than it probably should have been. If you’re familiar with the history of Pixel phones, I’ll put it this way: both 3A models have more color-accurate screens than the Pixel 2 XL.

On a $1,000-plus phone, you should absolutely nitpick the screen. It should be a pristine expanse of bright, completely invisible pixels. I don’t think a $400 phone needs to be held and compared to the same standard, but that doesn’t mean you should buy crap. This isn’t a crap screen. It’s good, and I had no problems with it.

Build Quality & Design

The Flagship smartphone or Premium phones are usually made of metal or Glass considering the aesthetics; this one is made of polycarbonate. It doesn’t have glass that melts around the edge of the frame. There are big bezels above and below the screen (but no notch). You won’t get a second camera on the front or the back. The fingerprint sensor is on the back instead of sitting under the screen, and you absolutely won’t get a face unlock feature here.

The Pixel 3A doesn’t feel like a “premium” phone compare to Pixel 3, but it is, nevertheless, well-designed. It’s simple and comfortable phone. The only real adornment is the classic Pixel’s two-toned finish on the back: the top of it is glossy; the majority is matte. It still supports the squeeze-to-launch Google Assistant feature. You can pick from three colors with twee names: “just black,” “simply white,” and “the new purple-ish.”

There is one build quality trade-off that I wish Google hadn’t made: The Pixel 3A isn’t water resistant. Everything else about this phone in this price range — makes you feel like it can be a knock-around device that you don’t have to worry about. But you will have to worry about it as it is not dust or water resistant or splash resistant. Google Officially did not gave any IPX grading but they surely have taken measures as taking IPX rating surely increase the cost.

Everything else related to Build is covered by Jerry on its YouTube channel.

There are a lot of little things you’ll miss out on with the Pixel 3A. Some of them might matter to you, but I strongly suspect most will not:

• It doesn’t support wireless charging. This one’s a bummer, but it’s not surprising.
• It doesn’t have the fastest possible networking. If you are on a Wi-Fi network that could push through more than 600     Mbps, you won’t be able to achieve that. (You are almost surely not near such a network.)
• The only storage option is 64GB, and there’s no SD card support to expand it.
• It doesn’t support Daydream VR.
• It can’t do wide angle selfies like the Pixel 3 can.
• I’m annoyed enough by the fact that you don’t get Google Photos original resolution backup for free to mention it again.

Verdict

Am I recommending this phone? Yes. If you want to buy a phone between 300 and 500 USD or under 45,000 INR, you won’t find a better option. I know it can’t compete in processing with OnePlus or other premium Mid-Segment, but its value for money product as well from a well reupdated brand Google

In a head-to-head comparison with all of the phones you’re probably familiar with, from the iPhone X lineup to the Pixel 3 to the Galaxy S10, the Pixel 3A will lose. I don’t know if the cost savings and the expanded carrier support will be enough to make this phone popular.

But I do know this: I have been waiting for Google to make this exact phone for something like five years. Google used to make phones that were ridiculously good for the price. 2013’s $349 Nexus 5 is still the pinnacle of an inexpensive, excellent phone. Since then, prices across the industry have gone up, up, and up again. So, I am glad Google is getting back to those roots. This is the kind of phone Google should be making: something good and affordable.