Google's Pixel 3a Review: The Best Experience Between Mobile Intermediaries

Pixel 3a is Google's mobile for the masses and should motivate other companies to offer exclusive premium line experiences on cheaper handsets.

Google's Pixel 3a Review: The Best Experience Between Mobile Intermediaries
Google's Pixel 3a Review: The Best Experience Between Mobile Intermediaries


I've been using Pixel 3a for four weeks, and the experience I've had with this intermediary is still incredible.


The device has an exemplary technical sheet: OLED screen, stereo sound quality, imaging camera that uses Google's exclusive Artificial Intelligence technology, premium series design, and competitive build quality. Attention in this device is the presence of a fingerprint sensor, the maintenance of the P2 input to the headphones to offer more options to the category, a decent battery and customized software, which does not leave anything to be desired about original models of the Pixel 3 line.

On the Pixel 3a, we only have one lens on the front camera.

However, the more accessible models do not offer the two front-facing camera sensors as we have in the Premium variants, and this is correctly perceived in the quality of the images captured with the front camera, especially those using the depth feature. So do not think that having a Pixel 3a you will have the whole experience of having a Pixel 3, that is not the idea behind this line.

What the Pixel 3a also does not have, is the image processing chip unique to Google, called Pixel Visual Core. This means that the processing of the images captured by the camera takes place directly on the Snapdragon 670 chip. As a result, the processing of the images takes a little longer to happen than in Pixel 3.

Now, leaving aside the comparisons with the top-of-the-line variants of the series, what can the Pixel 3a offer?

The back is plastic but does not give the impression of a cheap cell phone.

Review of Google Pixel 3a: build quality and screen

When we take the Pixel 3a in our hands, we know that it is a device that uses plastic in its construction. But this is not a bad thing. The finish of the invention is very well done and uses smooth plastic on the sides and the upper back in the space where the camera is located. Just above the fingerprint sensor, we have frosted vinyl that goes up to the bottom of the end. This makes us have the same look as the Pixel line.

In a time of overtaking the front of the device to the screen, the Pixel 3a leaves much to be desired. The edges of the invention are vast, and this causes a certain awkwardness, but it's not really the end of the world.

The screen of the Pixel 3a is 5.6 inches OLED with FHD + resolution (2,220 x 1,080 pixels), with 441 ppi and 18.5: 9 aspect ratio. The quality of the screen is good, the colors are warmer and pull more red than white. In Android settings, you can change the colors to "natural," "enhanced," and "adaptive," but this reddish tone will remain prominent.

The fact that Google has opted for an OLED screen should be highlighted because not all intermediate devices come to market with this display technology. On the other hand, this is an inevitable option for Big G as the company has put great emphasis on the dark mode of both the system and its applications. This will save energy when the screen is active and, according to the Android engineers themselves, this savings is significant.

Until the launch of Android Q, the Pixel 3a runs with Android 9 Foot.

Still, on the side of the construction of the device, we have stereo speakers, but both are not mounted on the front, only the speaker for connections. The second audio output is next to the USB-C port and has the same microphone design. Because of this, the tray for the SIM card is located on the side of the phone, not the bottom, as in Pixel 3.

The quality of the speakers is excellent, but the fact that one of the audio outputs is at the bottom gets in the way when it comes to media consumption and gaming experience. Anyway, this is a problem we have in all smartphones that do not bring the speakers mounted on the screen.

The second audio output is next to the USB-C port.

Review of Google Pixel 3a: software and performance

Regarding the operating system, the Pixel 3a runs with the Android 9 Pie and will be updated for Android 10 Q. Yes, this is an excellent advantage of the line as well as rely on the custom interface of the Pixel series, with gesture navigation and greater integration with Google services.

The system is very fluid, you can not complain. For an intermediate smartphone, packaged by Qualcomm's Snapdragon 670 processor with 4GB of RAM (LPDDR4X), the performance is satisfactory. Now, of course, mid hardware will offer inferior performance compared to the high-end models we have on the market. Also, there are midrange devices with a higher amount of RAM, which ends up delivering better performance, as is the case of OnePlus, Asus, and Xiaomi smartphones, for example.

In addition to the software, Google Assistant integration into the system allows you to use the device in different ways to make everyday tasks easier, such as sending emails quickly or even filling out forms online with the help of the smart assistant. Also, the Pixel 3a allows you to access Google Assistant soon by pressing the sides of the device, which is very practical when performing searches, confirm the schedule, and send messages without unlocking the device.

The Pixel 3 Premium camera is also available on Pixel 3a.

Last year, in my review of Pixel 3, I said that Google's cell phone was by far the smartest device I've ever used and, given the similarity of the software, the Pixel 3a is by far the smartest intermediary I've ever used.

Another essential feature of the new Pixel is that they will have another layer of data protection and privacy in the Wizard by the end of this year. This is because Google Artificial Intelligence (AI) can already perform actions inside the mobile, which means that the process is local, not leaving the device. This causes us to have almost no experience of latency in the handset, transcriptions that happen in real time and do not require an internet connection to work.

To see the full list of Google Pixel 3a specifications, click here.

Review of Google Pixel 3a: camera

Google engineers with the Pixel 3a intend to bring the experiences of their cell phones Premium to all, that's the essence of the series. Therefore, bringing the excellent rear camera of the Pixel 3 to the new devices is the great goal of creating this line.

Therefore, the Pixel 3a has the same 12.2 MP rear camera as the original series. And this is where this device has practically no competition in the category.

As with the models announced last year, Pixel 3a lets you take photos using technologies like HDR + and features like the infamous Portrait Mode, Super Zoom, and Night Vision for low-light captures. And yes, comparing the cameras of Pixel 3 and Pixel 3a, we have a consistency of colors and lighting in the images.

Camera portrait mode

Regarding camera specifications, the sensor has 1.4 μm pixel size, autofocus with Dual-pixel phase detection, has optical and electronic image stabilization and has f / 1.8 focus aperture. What slightly limits this camera compared to the others found in other Android smartphones is the angle of opening. Image capture occurs at a viewing edge of only 76 °, which leaves a lot of outside. In the time it bothers.

The front camera has 8MP, only one sensor, f / 2.0 aperture, 1.12 μm pixel size, and 84 ° aperture angle. Here we had a cut from Google, of course, but still, using the image processing technology from the search giant, we have good photography experience.

The Pixel 3a has a 3.000mAh battery which, although it does not look like much on paper, delivers a pleasant experience as an average user can spend an entire day with the device without the need for charging. Turning on save mode, which turns off some features and restricts apps, you can increase the usage time of the machine considerably.

Although we do not have the option of wireless charging, this smartphone has the fast charging technology and is shipped with an 18W (USB-C) adapter with USB-PD 2.0. Among the intermediate models of the market, this is a great "plus" of line 3a.

And here, I can not fail to comment that, because we have the maintenance of the 3.5mm audio jack, we can charge the Pixel 3a and, at the same time, listen to music, without the need for adapters or any other accessories. Thank you, Google!
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