Is the Google Pixel 4a 5G a good entry-point if you want to get 5G connectivity without spending a fortune, or does it miss the mark?
What we love – Great camera and superb software
Pixel phones are renowned for their excellent cameras, and the Pixel 4a 5G continues in that proud tradition, offering fantastic shots with its 12-megapixel main camera and 16-megapixel ultrawide lens.
Whether in well-lit or gloomily dark surroundings, you’ll always get cracking pictures with this smartphone at hand; colours are bright but accurate, and the dynamic range is simply unrivalled. Video capture is also very good, a significant improvement on the previous generation, and when you watch the replay you’ll be content with the sharp FHD+ OLED display, which measures 6.2 inches diagonally.
Being from Google’s own stable, this device also runs one of the very cleanest and leanest versions of Android software, and it will be at the front of the queue for updates over the next few years.
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What we don’t like – Unconvincing against the competition
The Pixel 4a 5G is not a bad phone by any means, but it’s difficult to work out if there’s a gap in the market that it would neatly fill.
A few compromises have been made to the device to earn it the “a” suffix, namely the lack of a faster 90Hz refresh rate (it’s stuck at 60Hz), the plasticky construction, and the less-than-flagship (but still highly respectable) Snapdragon 765G chipset.
This leaves it sitting a little awkwardly in Google product portfolio, somewhat lost in no man’s land; you’d probably be best off spending a bit more for the superior Pixel 5, or if 5G is not a dealbreaker, then save a few pounds on the affordable Pixel 4a.
The Pixel 4a 5G is a very good phone, boosted significantly by its highly impressive camera performance and Google’s signature streamlined software. However, take a look at your top priorities and your available budget before buying this one over the Pixel 4a or the Pixel 5.