Google has unveiled two new phones in its lineup, the Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL, which are designed to deliver a pure Android experience along with Google's class-leading cameras for a lower price.
Google says it's goal is "to bring a more helpful smart phone experience to more people," according to Rick Osterloh, Google's hardware chief. Do the latest Pixel phones deliver? Check out our review of the Pixel 3a; we're still testing the Pixel 3a XL, but we have some initial impressions of the phone. Here's what else you need to know about these lower-cost phones from Google.
Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a release date and availability
The Pixel 3a is available from Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon and Google Fi. AT&T is not carrying these phones. You can also go to googlestore.com. The Pixel 3a starts at $399, while the Pixel 3a XL starts at $479.
Pixel 3a Camera
Google has brought its Pixel camera features to the Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL. This includes Night Sight for better photos in low light. Google showed an example vs the iPhone X in low light to drive home its point.
Other welcome camera features include Portrait mode, which uses software, as well as Super Res Zoom. So you don't need a second lens to get great-looking shots.
Pixel 3a specs
|Phone||Pixel 3a ||Pixel 3a XL |
|Screen (Resolution)||5.6-inch OLED |
(2220 x 1080)
|6-inch OLED (2160 x 1080)|
|CPU||Snapdragon 670||Snapdragon 670|
|Rear Camera||12MP (f/1.8)||12MP (f/1.8)|
|Battery||3,000 mAh||3,700 mAh|
|Size||6 x 2.8 x 0.3 inches||6.3 x 3 x 0.3 inches|
|Weight||5.2 ounces||5.8 ounces|
The Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL are not the most powerful phones, sporting a Snapdragon 670 processor, 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage. Then again, these are mid-range phones. Fortunately, because these handsets run a clean version of Android, you shouldn't experience lag during everyday tasks.
The Pixel 3a sports a 5.6-inch screen and the Pixel 3a a 6-inch display, and they're both OLED. Google will be offering three color options: Just Black, Clearly White and Purple-ish. The phones do have decent size bezels, but that's to be expected at this price. On the plus side, many will appreciate the inclusion of a headphone jack.
Smartphone prices are creeping upward. Apple and Samsung have addressed that price creep by coming out with lower-cost versions of their flagship phones that sacrifice a few premium features in the name of a lower price tag. And now Google has followed suit with even more aggressively priced phones.
It sounds like you’ll make trade-offs on performance and design while still maintaining the great photography features that have made Google’s handsets stand out. And we bet a lot of people will be willing to make those trade-offs.