Google’s Pixel 3a inherits the best of Google Pixel experience from the older Pixel 3 series. It demonstrates the technology behind Google which is capable of optimising hardware and software for the best photography with a single camera.
Although Google chose the Qualcomm Snapdragon 670 processor for the 3a series of smartphones, the phone is still snappy and do not have any lagging issues. In fact, ther smoothness is as a good as the older Pixel 3 based on Snapdragon 845.
Just like the previous 3 series, the Pixel 3a didn’t come with many new features but more on software enhancements to it’s suite of applications. Night Sight now comes preinstalled and Google introduced the Time Laspe in it’s camera app. It also maintained the single back camera but removed the wide angle selfie camera. Hopefully, we will see a wide angle and telephoto camera on a Pixel 4.
Similar to the Pixel 3, the Pixel 3a lacks a manual mode option in the software. If you love doing light painting, you may be disappointed as there are no manual adjustments to ISO and exposure available in the camera app. Third party applications may help have such options.
The Pixel 3a comes with front firing stereo speakers which sounded loud and clear. It is difficult to explain the stereo surrounding effect you get playing even online Radio.
Pixel 3a also comes first with the Now Playing app which will listen and show you the song title of a track from your background. You can switch it off the same way as Google Assistant.
When it comes to a smartphone, battery life is utmost importance. The slightly larger battery took almost 1 hr half to fully charge up. Looks like Google has to find ways to improve on it’s quick charge for future phones. A full charge lasted me an entire day playing youtube, streaming radio, answering calls and doing speedtest on 4G.
eSIM is the way to go for Google Pixel but most of the telcos do not support it. You still have to use the nano sim. Even though you have a telco that supports eSIM and you slot in another SIM card, you can choose which line to use at a time. There is no dual standby. It is strange because on Android Q beta 2, this feature was enabled but removed in Beta 3 and 4.
One of the nicest feature of Pixel 3 or Pixel 3 XL is the Call Screening function. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work here in Singapore as it only works in US, English language (changing the assistant language doesn’t work, I tried it!).
Well, basically Pixel 3a is a handy smartphone and has a smaller screen than the Pixel 3 XL we reviewed last October. The software features are the same after the software update. The hardware difference may not affect usage as it has a lower clock processor. Night Sight still takes wonderful night scenes. The Pixel 3a is more affordable and is definitely worth owning one.
Singapore Pricing of Pixel 3 is priced SGD 659 and Pixel 3a XL at SGD 749. Both models are available on Google Store Singapore.
- Night photography
- Front facing stereo speakers
- Ear phone jack
- More affordable
- No IP rating
- Single SIM slot + eSIM
- No VoLTE / VoWIFI support for local telcos