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Pixel 7 vs Pixel 5: Two years later, are you ready to upgrade?

Is it time to trade in that Pixel 5 for something newer?
By
April 18, 2023
Google Pixel 5
Check price
Positives
Fantastic, fast display
Great battery life
Wireless charging
Negatives
Charging is a bit slow comparatively
Camera sensors are starting to show their age
No optical telephoto shooter
Google Pixel 7
MSRP: $599.00
Check price
Positives
Long-term update pledge
Clean Pixel UI software and exclusive features
Unbeatable value for money
Negatives
Slow to charge
Tensor G2 can run hot
Middling speakers
Google Pixel 7 Pro
MSRP: $899.00
Check price
Positives
Unique design
Flexible, high-class camera setup
Upgraded fingerprint scanner and modem
Clean Pixel UI software and exclusive features
Long-term software support
Incredible value
Negatives
Tensor G2 still runs hot at times
Slow charging

The Pixel 5 is now over two years old. While it’s still a decent enough phone, Google has changed its design philosophy a lot since then. If you’re considering picking up a newer device, there are plenty of great smartphones out there. For Pixel fans, the most obvious upgrade would be the Google Pixel 7. When it comes to the Pixel 5 vs Pixel 7, you’ll find plenty has changed but is the Pixel 7 worth the upgrade? Let’s find out.

Google Pixel 5 vs Google Pixel 7: At a glance

Curious what's different between the older Pixel 5 and the new Pixel 7? Here are the biggest differences at a glance:

  • The Pixel 7 has a larger display than the Pixel 5
  • The Pixel 7 has a more powerful processor than the Pixel 5
  • The Pixel 7 has more storage options than the Pixel 5
  • The Pixel 7 has a revamped camera experience compared to the Pixel 5

Google Pixel 5 vs Google Pixel 7: Specs

Pixel 7Pixel 7 Pro
Display
Pixel 7
6.32 inch
2,400 x 1,080 pixels
1,400 nits
90Hz
OLED
Pixel 7 Pro
6.7 inch
3,120 x 1,440 pixels
1,500 nits
120Hz
pOLED
6-inch OLED
2,340 x 1,080 resolution
432ppi
90Hz refresh rate
19.5:9 aspect ratio
>1,000,000:1 contrast ratio
Processor
Pixel 7
Tensor G2
Pixel 7 Pro
Tensor G2
Qualcomm Snapdragon 765G
2x Cortex-A76
6x Cortex-A55
Titan M Security Module
Adreno 620
RAM
Pixel 7
8GB
Pixel 7 Pro
12GB
8GB
Storage
Pixel 7
128/256GB

Pixel 7 Pro
128/256GB
128GB
Battery
Pixel 7
4,355mAh Li-Ion
Wireless charging
up to 72 hours of runtime with Extreme Battery Saver
Pixel 7 Pro
5,000mAh Li-Ion
Wireless charging
up to 72 hours runtime with Extreme Battery Saver
4,080mAh
18W charging
12W wireless charging
Reverse wireless charging
Cameras
Pixel 7
Rear:
- 50MP main
1.2 μm, ƒ/1.85, 82-degree FoV
1/1.31-inch sensor
OIS and EIS

- 12MP ultrawide
1.25 μm, ƒ/2.2, 114-degree FoV

- Laser AF

Front:
- 10.8MP
1.22 μm, ƒ/2.2, 92.8-degree FoV
Pixel 7 Pro
Rear:
- 50MP main
1.2 μm, ƒ/1.85, 82-degree FoV
1/1.31-inch sensor
OIS and EIS

- 12MP ultrawide
1.25 μm, ƒ/2.2, 125.8-degree FoV, autofocus

- 48MP telephoto
0.7 μm, ƒ/3.5, 20.6-degree FoV
OIS
5x optical zoom, 30x Super Resolution

- Laser AF

Front:
- 10.8MP
1.22 μm, ƒ/2.2, 92.8-degree FoV
Rear
Main: 12.2MP, f/1.7 aperture, 1.4µm pixels, optical + electronic image stabilization
Secondary: 16MP, f/2.2 aperture, 1 micron pixel, ultra-wide (107-degree FoV)
4K at 60fps/30fps

Front
8MP sensor, f/2.0 aperture, 1.12µm pixels, fixed focus, 83-degree FoV
Connectivity
Pixel 7
2G, 3G, 4G, 5G
Bluetooth 5.2
NFC
Wi-Fi 802.11ax
Pixel 7 Pro
2G, 3G, 4G, 5G
Bluetooth 5.2
NFC
Wi-Fi 802.11ax
Proximity / ambient light sensor
Accelerometer
Gyrometer
Magnetometer
Pixel Imprint fingerprint sensor
Barometer
Spectral and flicker sensor
Dimensions
Pixel 7
155.64 x 73.16 x 8.7mm
Pixel 7 Pro
162.9 x 76.55 x 8.9mm
144.7 x 70.4 x 8mm
151g
Software
Pixel 7
Android 13

Pixel 7 Pro
Android 13
Android 11 (Upgradeable to 13)
Durability
Pixel 7
IP68
Pixel 7 Pro
IP68
IP68
Colors
Pixel 7
Obsidian, Snow, and Lemongrass
Pixel 7 Pro
Obsidian, Snow, and Hazel
Just Black, Sorta Sage

Note: While this article is primarily focused on Pixel 5 vs Pixel 7, we’ve included the Pixel 7 Pro specs just to give you a better look at your potential options.

Google Pixel 5  vs Google Pixel 7: Should you upgrade?

Google Pixel 5 seen from the back, laying on a table with a mini Android basketball figurine next to it
Rita El Khoury / Android Authority

Let’s be honest; the Pixel 5 was about Google playing it safe. They ditched their half-glass/half-metal design philosophy, went for a mid-range chip instead of the latest silicon, and cut the pricing down a bit as well. I had a Pixel 5 before upgrading to the Pixel 6, and I can say it was a good phone. It just wasn’t all that exciting. In contrast, the Pixel 7 has a bold design with a unique camera bar on the back. Love it or hate it, you can’t deny it’s a head-turner.

The Pixel 7 wins in design, but are the insides significantly upgraded enough to make the leap forward? Yes and no.

The Pixel 7 is objectively a major upgrade. Its Tensor G2 SoC has great AI tricks that improve photography and other aspects of your mobile experience, but it’s not exactly equivalent to the highest-end Qualcomm chips. The Pixel 5 was also a bit modest with its processor, packing a mid-range Snapdragon 765G. But in day-to-day scenarios, both phones are plenty fast and capable. Even the 1080p displays are very similar with the same 90Hz refresh rate, though the Pixel 7 has a slightly larger screen.

The Pixel 5 is still a great phone, but the Pixel 7 is better in almost every way.

Where the Pixel 7 really shines is the camera. Looking at the spec sheet makes it clear that the Pixel 7’s setup is superior. You have a 50MP main camera vs a 12.2MP main camera after all! But a picture is worth a thousand words, so take a look below at some photos we took from both. It’s pretty obvious who the winner is.

The Pixel 7 is faster, has a better camera, marginally better battery life, and will get support for new OS updates all the way into 2025. Meanwhile, the Pixel 5 is set to get Android 14, but after that, it’ll only qualify for security updates. If you are ready for a new phone, yes, this is a worthwhile upgrade. That last statement is super important, though.

If the Pixel 5 is still running as well as day one for you, there’s probably no reason to rush out and buy a new phone unless you really want that new camera setup. It’ll still get software updates throughout this year. That gives you a bit more time to see what else is coming down the pipe, such as the more affordable upcoming Pixel 7a or even the rumored Pixel Fold.

On the other hand, if your Pixel 5 isn’t working as well as it used to, the Pixel 7 will certainly be a welcome upgrade.

See price at Amazon
Google Pixel 5
Google Pixel 5
Fantastic, fast display
Great battery life
Wireless charging
See price at Amazon
Google Pixel 7
9%off
Google Pixel 7
Tensor G2 processor
Upgraded camera
Low price