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How to turn off the Google Pixel 8a

Can't figure out how to turn your phone off? Let's help you!

Published onJune 3, 2024

It seems like phone makers don’t really want you to ever turn off your phone, as they have been making it more confusing to do so. What used to be the “power” button is now known as the “side key,” and pressing and holding it no longer launches the power menu. Instead, it triggers Google Assistant. So, how do you turn the Google Pixel 8a off?!

If you just got yourself a Google Pixel 8a, turning off your phone is easy once you learn how to do it. And the great thing is that there are actually multiple methods you can try. Let’s go over them.


The simplest way to turn off a Google Pixel 8a is to simultaneously press the side and volume up button, then select Power off. There are other methods, though, so keep reading to learn about them.


Turn off the Pixel 8a using the hardware keys

While pressing and holding the side button no longer pulls up the power menu by default, you do need to use it. You can launch the power menu by pressing the side and volume up buttons at the same time. The power menu will show up, and you can select Power off.

How to remap the side key on a Pixel 8a

I am a creature of habits, and prefer the old way of turning off my phone. If you dig deeper into the settings, you can actually reprogram the side key to make it do something other than launch Assistant.

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Tap on System.
  3. Hit Gestures.
  4. Select Press & hold power button.
  5. Here, you can select Power menu.

Next time you press and hold the side button, the power menu will come up. Hit Power off.

You can power off the Pixel 8a from the notification area

There is also a power menu option in the notification area, if you prefer.

  1. Swipe down to access the notification area.
  2. Swipe down again to display more options.
  3. In the bottom right corner, tap the power menu icon.
  4. Select Power off.

Ask Google Assistant or Gemini

Whether you’re using Google Assistant or Gemini, you can ask it to turn off your phone using voice commands. Just ask nicely!

Say, “OK, Google, turn off the phone.” This will launch the power menu. Tap on Power off.

How to force restart a Google Pixel 8a

This method is mostly for those times when the software is buggy or doesn’t work. It is known as a hard reset or force restart, and you can do it one of two ways with the Pixel 8a.

All you have to do is press and hold the side button for about 30 seconds.

I am a bit impatient, so I prefer using the second method. You can press and hold the side and volume up buttons for about 10 seconds. Much better.


Most times, you can get out of Safe Mode by simply restarting the phone. On the Pixel 8a, try simultaneously pressing the side and volume up buttons, then select Restart. For more tips, check out our guide to getting out of Safe Mode.

Maybe you don’t want to turn your phone off altogether, but prefer keeping it on while saving some energy. One simple way to do this is to turn off 5G by going to Settings > Network & internet > SIMs and select your main SIM. Tap on Preferred network type and select 4G or 3G.

So far, Google Find My Device is only advertised to be able to locate Pixel 8 and Pixel 8 Pro when turned off, for “several hours.” That said, it hasn’t been mentioned if this will work on the Pixel 8a. We tested it, and it doesn’t work yet.

The simplest way to factory reset a Pixel 8a is to go to Settings > System > Reset options > Erase all data (factory reset) > Erase all data. Then, enter your PIN and hit Erase all data again. If you want to try other methods, we have a full guide on factory resetting Android devices.

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