A huge swathe of Google Pixel 5a specs just dropped in a new leak, but you might find them a little disappointing.
The new budget Pixel seems almost identical to the Google Pixel 4a 5G that released last year. At least according to the details and renders that Steve "Onleaks" Hemmerstoffer has revealed on his Voice page.
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Starting at the front, we have a 6.2-inch FHD display with a punch-hole selfie camera in the top left corner. That's exactly the same as the Pixel 4a 5G, even down to the bezels according to Hemmerstoffer.
The Pixel 5a uses a plastic back, as the Pixel a-series phones have since the start. Its total size is 6.1 x 2.9 x 0.3 inches (156.2 x 73.2 x 8.8mm). That makes the Pixel 5a marginally bigger in all directions than the Pixel 4a 5G, but the difference isn't likely to be noticeable.
On its back, within a square camera bump, are two rear cameras — main and ultrawide — plus an auxiliary sensor that Hemmerstoffer believes is a PDAF autofocus module.
For the uninitiated, a phase detection module uses two or more miniature photo sensors to check if light information from the edges of the camera lenses is identical. If it is, then the image is in focus. If not, the PDAF system can instruct the camera to try to focus on the subject again until it finds the right level.
It's a slick feature but one that's already on the Pixel 4a 5G's rear cameras, which also happens to be the same as the Google Pixel 5's rear cameras. Given the impressive photos the Pixel 5 delivers, that's no bad thing.
We will also get a rear fingerprint sensor, a 3.5mm headphone jack and stereo speakers on the Pixel 5a according to the leak. And yes, you guessed it, these are all features found on the Pixel 4a 5G, too.
While these specs paint a lackluster picture in terms of fresh design and features, it's possible that there will be changes in the specs not listed here. Notable absences from Hemmerstoffer's leaks include the chipset and the resolution of the camera sensors.
The Pixel 4a sells for $349, $150 less than the $499 Pixel 4a 5G. Assuming Google wants to keep the price for the Pixel 5a roughly the same as the 4a's, that could mean we end up with a less powerful chipset and the same cameras as before.
Learning more about the Google Pixel 6 might help clarify why Google's made an almost identical phone to last year. What we've heard so far is interesting.
Google will reportedly offer an XL version of the Pixel 6, something it skipped with the Pixel 5. The Pixel 6 may also have brought back facial recognition unlocking, a feature that appeared on the Google Pixel 4 but was then dropped.
We'll have to wait for more leaks to get a better idea of what the Pixel 5a is all about, and if it can succeed the Pixel 4a as the top pick on our best cheap phones list.
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Richard is based in London, covering news, reviews and how-tos for phones, tablets, gaming, and whatever else people need advice on. Following on from his MA in Magazine Journalism at the University of Sheffield, he's also written for WIRED U.K., The Register and Creative Bloq. When not at work, he's likely thinking about how to brew the perfect cup of specialty coffee.