Do The Tensor G3 SoC And Seven Years Of Android Updates Make The Google Pixel 8a A Worthy Successor?

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In a surprising turn of events, Google has announced its Pixel 8a ahead of its anticipated launch during I/O 2024. The smartphone succeeds the capable Pixel 7a and has all the photography and videography perks of the Pixel series. Although the phone offers a refreshed design, runs on Google’s flagship Tensor G3 SoC, and features a capable dual-camera system, the question that remains is whether the smartphone is worth Rs. 52,999 or not.

Google Pixel 8a: Design, Screen, And Processor

Pixel 8a Vs. Pixel 7a

The Pixel 8a, like the rest of the Pixel 8 series, bids farewell to boxy edges to welcome rounded corners. However, like the Pixel 7a, it still has a noticeably broad chin, which isn’t usual for phones at its price point. Like other A-series smartphones, the Pixel 8a ships with an aluminum frame, polycarbonate back, and glass (Corning Gorilla Glass 3) on the front. The smartphone will be available in all four colorways in India – Porcelain, Obsidian, Aloe, and Bay.

The good news, however, is that the Pixel 8a comes with a 120Hz OLED screen, which is a significant improvement over the 90Hz panel of its predecessor. Under the hood, the new smartphone features the Google Tensor G3 SoC, the same processor that powers the flagship Pixel 8 lineup. Thanks to the processor, the Pixel 8a gets all the fancy AI-based features, such as Google Circle to Search, Best Take, Audio Magic Eraser, Magic Editor, etc. 

The phone can also run Google’s Gemini Nano model. So far, we’ve discussed two reasons to upgrade to the Pixel 8a: a smoother display and the availability of the latest AI-based features. Let’s move ahead and see what the phone offers in terms of camera, battery life, and software experience.

Google Pixel 8a: Camera, Battery, And Software Updates

New AI features on the Pixel 8a

Cameras are one aspect of the Pixel 8a that offers nothing new in particular. The phone ships with the same 64MP (f/1.89) primary camera and 13MP (f/2.2) ultrawide sensor on the Pixel 7a. Yes, the Google Photos app contains a lot of new tricks, but there’s nothing new to the entire Pixel lineup. Remember, the Pixel 8a will still click awesome pictures, standing among the best camera phones in the segment.

In comparison to the 4,385 mAh battery on the Pixel 7a, the Pixel 8a features a 4,492 mAh cell, which, in theory, should last slightly longer. However, the effect might be negligible since the phone has a 120Hz display. Regarding charging, the Pixel 8a is stuck with 18W wired charging and 7.5W wireless charging speeds (via Qi charging standard). 

Like the Pixel 8 series, the Pixel 8a will get seven years of Android updates, a significant advantage over the regular Pixel 7a. While the Pixel 8a should get Android updates until Android 21 (if the phone’s hardware holds up for that long), the Pixel 7a will only receive updates until May 2026. Hence, in terms of longevity, the Pixel 8a provides peace of mind.

What About The Storage: Does Pixel 8a Get A 256GB Model?

Pixel 8a with IP67 water and dust resistance

While the Pixel 7a is a great phone, it only comes in a 128GB storage model. You might not notice the lack of storage at first, but as you start using the phone daily, downloading more and more apps, and clicking some amazing photos/videos with the device, you’ll realize that 128GB is simply not enough. Fortunately, Google has fixed that with the Pixel 8a, which also comes in a 256GB variant.

Additional features of the Pixel 8a include an IP67 water and dust resistance rating, an under-display fingerprint scanner, Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth v5.3, NFC, and access to Google’s quarterly Pixel feature drops, which include new features.

Should You Purchase The Pixel 8a?

Pixel 8a in Obsidian finish

Well, it depends. For instance, if you own a Pixel 7a, we think it’s best to stick with the phone for another year or so, and consider upgrading in 2026 when the software support ends. On the other hand, if you own an older Android phone, like the Pixel 5, Galaxy S20, or a mid-range phone, you can consider spending Rs. 52,999 on the base model (which is available for Rs. 48,999 with SBI card offer). 

The Pixel 8a with 256GB of storage costs Rs. 59,999 in India (Rs. 55,999 with SBI card offer), which might be slightly steep for some buyers. There are a couple of other options in this segment, including the Galaxy S23 (which is available at a heavily discounted price), the iPhone 14, and so on. Given that the other options have a more powerful SoC, one might hesitate to go all out on Google’s latest A-series smartphone.

Those with a limited budget could consider the Pixel 7a instead of the latest device, as it offers about 70 to 80 percent of all the features on the Pixel 8a. Ultimately, it comes down to an individual’s preference. One of the best camera systems, the purest Android experience, and AI-based features have been the Pixel phones’ forte for quite some time, and the Pixel 8a surely excels at those. 

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Smartprix StaffSmartprix Staff
The SM Staff team consists of tech-savvy writers and editors adept at simplifying complex tech into easily understandable information.

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