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Google Pixel 4a specs: Is it enough of a Pixel 3a upgrade?

Is the Pixel 4a really the top dog in the budget phone market?

Published onAugust 2, 2021

Entrants like the OnePlus Nord and iPhone SE all deliver great features for the price, but what does Google’s budget phone bring to the table? The Google Pixel 4a was one of the most clamored smartphones in 2020, and for good reason. This handset offered great value for its price, a trend that was very welcomed in the midst of a pandemic and economic crisis. How good of a deal is it really, though? Here’s our take on its specs.

Our verdict: Google Pixel 4a review

Google Pixel 4a specs

Google Pixel 4a
5.81-inch OLED
2,340 x 1,080 resolution
19.5:9 aspect ratio
Gorilla Glass 3
Qualcomm Snapdragon 730G
2x Cortex-A76
6x Cortex-A55
Adreno 618
No microSD slot
12.2MP, f/1.7, 1.4µm pixels, optical + electronic image stabilization

8MP sensor, f/2.0, 1.12µm pixels, fixed focus, 84-degree field-of-view
Headphone jack
18W charging
No wireless charging
IP rating
No IP rating
Android 10
Just Black
Dimensions and weight
144 x 69.4 x 8.2mm

In terms of sheer power, Google is stepping up by delivering the Snapdragon 730G processor and 6GB of RAM. This is a welcome upgrade over the Snapdragon 670 and 4GB combo found in the Pixel 3a series, although it still falls short of the Snapdragon 765G and 8GB/12GB RAM pairing seen in the OnePlus Nord. The Snapdragon 730G isn’t a new chipset either, but it’s about as good as you can get for Qualcomm silicon without opting for a 5G chip.

Storage is another area where Google has improved matters, featuring 128GB of fixed storage compared to the Pixel 3a’s 64GB option. Unfortunately, there’s still no storage expansion, but this isn’t a surprise given that previous Pixels don’t have microSD support.

Google Pixel 4a 5G in hand front of phone 2
David Imel / Android Authority

Switch to the Pixel 4a’s battery and display specs, and you’ve got only minor tweaks here. The handset sees a slight bump to a 3,140mAh pack from the 3a’s 3,000mAh battery. We’ve still got 18W charging, while wireless charging is a no-go. Google has increased the size of the OLED screen ever so slightly and offers a punch-hole design, but you’re still getting an FHD+ resolution and 60Hz refresh rate. So those hoping for a 90Hz or 120Hz screen will need to look at devices from OnePlus, realme, and Xiaomi.

True to previous leaks, the Pixel 4a maintains the same cameras seen on its predecessor. That means the same old IMX363 12MP camera that’s been on most Pixel phones and no secondary rear cameras. The 8MP selfie camera is maintained as well.

See also: The best budget phones you can currently buy

Other notable specs include a rear fingerprint scanner, Bluetooth 5, NFC, stereo speakers, and Android 10.

Google Pixel 4a front standing straight
Google Pixel 4a
Pixel on a budget
Getting the Google experience has never been more accessible. A compact phone that's easy to use, a beautiful screen, and one of the best cameras in this price range. The Pixel 4a is hard to beat.

In other words, the Google Pixel 4a specs point to a phone that has few major upgrades beyond horsepower and storage. As we know, however, a specs list doesn’t tell the whole story because the Google Pixel 4a is a pretty fantastic phone — check out our review for our full verdict.

Is the Pixel 4a a good deal?

3048 votes

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