Google Pixel 4a is finally out. Although it has launched a few months earlier that the rumored schedule; however, many are eager to have one during the trying times. Compared to last year, Google has lowered the price and has also doubled the storage.
To begin the review, Google 4a provides a modest performance with a Snapdragon 730G chipset, 2 GB of RAM, and new UFS 2.1 storage speeds. A light boost in the battery’s capacity is given too, and the size of the display is stretchable to cover a bit more surface area. Also, there is a punch-hole selfie camera cut-out of the screen.
The frame and backside are made of plastic. However, the display glass is a Gorilla Glass 3. Besides, the camera gets a little bit brighter f/1.7 aperture lens, unlike 3a’s f/1.8. You can expect to see the camera’s performance compared to what we got on the Pixel 3a that was wonderful.
Apart from the taller screen, Google has made the set to shrink 4a’s footprint (compared to the 3a) in width and height. This is the initial Google Pixel phone to have a punch-hole cut out dedicated to the selfie camera.
With the Google Pixel 4a, Google is making its ground for its foothold in the mid-range niche. The higher-end Pixels that arrived before it bettered in camera technology. However, these days the competition is revolving around Google’s offerings. Through 3a, Google has proved it can construct cheap hardware to give a premium-feeling experience.
Google Pixel 4a Specs
Google Pixel 4a – Design and Quality
Google Pixel 4a is made with a back panel and plastic frame, and the display has security through Corning Gorilla Glass 3. Similar to Pixel 4 and 4 XL, the Pixel 4a has no longer the back window. Therefore, it is wholly matte on the back and secures the camera bump. It is impressive to get the fingerprint scanner that is matte on the back too.
The setup of the camera is square, but it only keeps a single 12.2MP camera with a dual-LED flash. You will like styling matches along with the Pixel 4. The camera’s housing does protrude, but not enough for rocking back and forth on the table is a serious problem.
The rear cover with the frame is one-piece. Therefore, holding the Google Pixel 4a feels nice and smooth with no seams or breaks. At 144 x 69.4 x 8.2 mm, the Google Pixel 4a is a bit narrower and shorter than the Pixel 3a. It’s slightly lighter at 143g, and the weight is well distributed.
The front of Pixel 4a belongs to the current era. The Pixel 4 XL and 4 had the honkin’ upper bezel, catering Motion Sense hardware. The bezels on this Pixel 4a are the tiniest you will see on a Pixel phone, and the display nicely fills the space.
There exists a headphone jack right at the top, unlike the current higher-end phones. USB-C port is at the bottom with two symmetrical ports – the one at right is a loudspeaker, and the other is a microphone.
The left side of the phone has a SIM tray, and it takes one nano Sim card. There is an absence of expandable storage, but dual SIM is possible through eSIM.
Camera, Image and Video Quality
Google Pixel 4a camera is similar to Google Pixel 3a’s hardware.
There is a 12.2MP camera along with 1/2.55″ sensor and 1.4 µm pixels. The Pixel 4a has a brighter f/1.7 aperture and a view of a 27mm-equivalent field. The camera is optically stabilized with accurate and quick Dual Pixel autofocus.
With ‘no’ manual shooting mode, you get a debuted “Dual Exposure” feature. Dual exposure enables you to adjust shadows and highlights of the scene before making a shot.
You have a Live HDR+, which is another feature in the Google Pixel 4. It lets you see the preview at a near-final version of the final processed shot in real-time before you click the shutter button.
The camera app of Google Pixel 4a is straightforward. You won’t be overwhelmed with many shooting modes, and the interface is simple, with not many options or settings.
The Google Pixel 4s camera shines in bright daylight. Details are well resolved without any over-sharpening. There’s barely any noise in these shots.
Shots in unfavorable conditions like overcast are where the HDR+ shows its efforts. Overcast skies are represented perfectly, and the overall scene under skies can appear dimmer sometimes with low contrast.
Low light photos are really good. Dynamic range, along with details are magnificent, but this is when we see a trace of noise from the HDR+ algorithm. The noise can be seen in the scenes’ shadows. Otherwise, colors lean cool while contrast is good. Night Sight is in lower light conditions. 4a can capture white balance more accurately.
Night Sight shots are possible in 2X zoom. There’s a massive improvement in dynamic range, exposure, color, and resolved detail.
Depending upon the scene, the Pixel 4a camera can take 1 to >3 minutes to capture a photo. Clouds usually travel for a good distance during that time, so you are recommended to shoot on at night.
The Selfie camera is the same as Pixel 3a’s on paper. First, let’s begin with the focus lens. It looks the focus is infinitely set because, in the background, everything is in ideal focus, but faces look a bit out of focus.
Dynamic range and contrast are great while taking selfies. When capturing a selfie in a shaded area with a bright background, the camera knows to meter, and the bright shadows do not look as aggressive as images from the primary camera. Similar to the main camera, colors lean and are vivid in bright light. Skin tones appear as fine.
Google Pixel 4a can shoot 4K video at 30 frames/second. There is an option to shoot 1080p at 60fps.
In the 1080p shooting mode, the video looks great. Dynamic range is also fine while resolved details look excellent. The photo is not soft and is not sharp either. Colors are ideal, and noise is minimal.
The Pixel 4a pre-order price tag is at around 350 bucks – regardless of dollars, pounds, or euros where you reside.
With different mid-range phones in a similar price range, the Google Pixel 4a offers a whole rounded Pixel experience with a compact size as well as in the budget-friendly price point.