Now the speculations are over. Google finally revealed the new medium range of smartphones. Google announced the new model at its annual Google I/O conference with its larger version Pixel 3a XL and Google Nest Hub Max. Although the event is usually focused on software, it often also serves to advertise new products. Here we give you our first impressions about the new Google Pixel 3a.
Design and manufacturing quality
In this case, Google wanted to make a more affordable version of the Pixel 3 but retaining virtually the design and manufacturing quality of its latest flagship.
The screen of the Pixel 3a measures 5.6 inches, which makes it somewhat larger than the standard model of Pixel 3. Of course, it remains an OLED panel despite being a cheaper device and also has a Full HD+ resolution.
This means that the new Pixel 3a also includes a back shell with two finishes: the shiny top and the matte bottom. The Pixel 3a is somewhat sturdier and also has a somewhat wider bezel.
The big difference is found in the frame of the bottom part, which is larger in Pixel 3a. This allows the new phone to have a headphone jack port, something that we can not find in the Pixel 3.
The new device retains in the pressure sensors, which means that the Pixel 3a is also compatible with the Active Edge function. You can press the phone and activate the Google Assistant in addition to other customizable functions.
On the other hand, the Pixel 3a is not water resistant, which is not surprising considering that Google has wanted to make a cheaper smartphone. In the case of the Pixel 3a, it is only available in the Black and White Classics, while the Pixel 3 is also available in an “almost pink“.
Although the design of the Pixel 3a is practically the same as that of the flagship, we do find some key differences in the specifications. For example, it includes a simpler processor: the Qualcomm Snapdragon 670 instead of the 845.
With the basic use of the phone, you do not notice this difference too much. Of course, it takes a little longer to load when we perform demanding tasks such as when taking a photo with Night Sight mode.
The Pixel 3a comes with a 4 GB RAM and 64 GB of storage. This may seem insufficient and more so if we take into account that it can not be expanded by means of a microSD card. You must use its cloud storage system.
It would seem logical that Google had decided to include a lower camera configuration in Pixel 3a with respect to Pixel 3 in order to lower the price. Surprisingly, it has been the opposite and we find exactly the same specifications.
In this sense, the Pixel 3a has the same rear camera of 12.2 MP, something that however may be insufficient now that the trend is to include cameras of three, four and even five lenses.
Google makes up for this by using excellent software that, among other functions, includes the Night Sight, Photobooth and Timelapse modes. As we said before, the only difference will be the speed at which you can process the photos one and the other model.
A small difference is found in the front camera, which in this case only includes one sensor. This means that some functions such as the camera for group selfies will have to be sacrificed.
With the Pixel 3a, Google has included a new feature that is part of Google Maps and uses the camera. It is a navigation system that uses augmented reality technology and will give you directions when you walk.
It will be enough for you to hold the phone and approach the road. You will see how big blue arrows appear on the screen, as well as little signs with very useful information. This will help you to know if you are going in the right direction.
It has ended up running into other pedestrians when you check Google Maps and walk at the same time. Thanks to the augmented reality, you can know where you should go by looking directly at what is around you through the screen.
Connectivity and battery autonomy
Apart from retaining the ack port, another advantage of the Pixel 3a is that it has stereo speakers and a USB C charging port that supports fast charging technology. On the other hand, unfortunately, it does not support wireless charging.
As for the battery, Google says you can use the Pixel 3a for 30 hours, that is, just over a day. To lengthen the battery, a function called Adaptative Battery will limit the energy used by certain apps.
In our test days, this battery with a capacity of 3000mAh has withstood us without problems. On a normal day of use, we exhausted half the battery. In addition, the 18 W charge recharges the mobile very quickly.
We really like the new Pixel 3a and we are quite optimistic about its potential. With this device, it seems that Google wanted to bet on a mid-range and affordable smartphone without sacrificing high-quality features.
With the Pixel 3a, you will get the typical Google design and excellent software, as evidenced by the same rear camera as the Pixel 3.