Google Pixel 7A: A Fantastic Budget Option Even After 3 Months
August 20, 2023

Google Pixel 7A: A Fantastic Budget Option Even After 3 Months

Pixel 7A: Design, Cameras, and Software

When I reviewed the Pixel 7A back in May, I praised its sleek design, excellent cameras, and similarity to the higher-priced Pixel 7. After revisiting the phone three months later, my impressions remain the same, and I want to highlight both the pros and cons of the device. Google consistently updates its Pixel phones with new features and functionality, ensuring they remain fresh. This trend is likely to continue with the Pixel 7A. However, with Google expected to announce the Pixel 8 lineup in a couple of months, the question arises: Is it worth buying the Pixel 7A now or should you wait for the Pixel 8?

Pixel 8: Rumors and Product Launch

Although we don’t know what to expect from Google’s next-generation phone, the answer largely depends on the Pixel 8’s price and any compelling new features it offers. Google typically unveils its next Pixel line in October and may significantly reduce the prices of the Pixel 7 series beforehand, making it a more attractive option than the 7A. Generally, I recommend waiting for Google’s major product launch before making a purchasing decision. However, if you need a new Android phone now and are considering the Pixel 7A, rest assured that you’ll get an excellent camera and useful software features in a package that’s just the right size.

Screen Size and Brightness

The 6.1-inch screen of the Pixel 7A strikes a perfect balance between portability and spaciousness. It’s large enough for comfortable reading, video calls, and scrolling through social media, while still feeling manageable to hold. However, compared to Samsung’s Galaxy S23, the Pixel 7A’s screen can appear dim outdoors, even on overcast days. Boosting the screen’s brightness to its maximum is often necessary for comfortable visibility. The Galaxy A54 5G, priced at $449, has a 6.4-inch display that can get brighter, but it’s worth noting that it compares less favorably to Google’s Pixel phones overall.

Battery Life

The Pixel 7A’s battery life is adequate but not outstanding, though it’s on par with the more expensive Galaxy S23 series. With a full charge, the Pixel 7A can last through a full day with some remaining battery in the evening. On a typical work day, disconnecting from the charger at around 8 or 8:30 a.m. and going to bed between 11 and 11:30 p.m., the Pixel 7A retains 46 to 56% of its battery life. This offers sufficient peace of mind if you’re going out after work and can’t charge your phone at your desk. However, like most phones, you need to remember to charge it overnight.

Camera Quality

The Pixel 7A’s 64-megapixel main camera captures sharp and vibrant photos, while the 13-megapixel ultrawide lens offers a broader field of view. Its photo quality doesn’t match that of high-end phones like the Pixel 7 Pro or Galaxy S23 Ultra, but it delivers an impressive level of detail and contrast. For example, photos taken with the Pixel 7A reveal minute details such as grains of salt on shishito peppers. However, the camera struggles with sharpness and clarity when capturing images of groups of people in dim indoor settings.

Software Updates and Features

The Pixel 7A runs on Android 13 and benefits from Google’s ongoing updates and feature drops. In June, about a month after its launch, the phone received a feature drop that introduced new wallpapers, safety features through the Google Assistant, real-time location sharing with emergency contacts, and an improved camera timer feature. The Recorder app also received updates, such as transcript exports to Google Drive and speaker-labeled video clips. While these updates may not be as impactful as full Android updates or Samsung’s One UI upgrades, they demonstrate Google’s commitment to keeping its phones fresh and relevant. With Google’s in-house Tensor processors becoming more advanced, we can expect even more advancements in this area.