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The Pixel 4a is here, and we’ve rounded up everything you need to know

It’s here — it’s finally here.

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To put things nicely, the road to the Pixel 4a has been a long one. The phone was originally slated to launch back in May during the Google I/O developer conference, but thanks to everything going on in the world, Google had to hit the 4a with delay after delay.

It’s now August 2020, and at long last, the Pixel 4a has arrived. It’s a lot like the Pixel 3a before it, but it upgrades a few key specs, gets a more modern design, and costs even less. That’s a recipe for success if we’ve ever heard one, and it means there’s a lot to talk about.

From full device specs, our review, or anything else in between, here’s everything you need to know about the Google Pixel 4a!

Latest Pixel

Google Pixel 4a

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$349 at Amazon
$350 at Best Buy

An outstanding camera, and then some

The Pixel 3a was hailed as one of the best affordable phones of 2019, and for 2020, we have its successor in the form of the Pixel 4a. The camera is better than ever, performance is plenty fast, the battery is reliable, and there’s even a headphone jack. Assuming you’re a fan of smaller phones and don’t mind the boring design, the Pixel 4a is one of the best deals out there.

Jump to:

  • The Pixel 4a costs $350
  • You can pre-order it right now
  • We’ve already reviewed it
  • Here are all the specs
  • The camera is excellent
  • What Pixel 3a owners need to know
  • Don’t forget the accessories
  • Let’s talk about 5G
  • A Pixel 5 is also in the works

How much does the Pixel 4a cost?

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Let’s start with the most important thing of all — price. The big draw to the Pixel 3a was its $399 starting price, and for the Pixel 4a, Google was able to hit an even lower number.

If you want to buy a Pixel 4a for yourself, you’ll pay just $350. That makes it considerably cheaper than flagships such as the Galaxy S20 and OnePlus 8 Pro, and just a little bit more expensive than the Moto G Stylus.

Google’s once again offering just a single storage option, but that also comes with a nice tweak compared to last year. Instead of being limited to 64GB of space, the Pixel 4a ships with 128GB. There’s still no microSD support for further expanding how much room you have, but 128GB should be more than enough for the vast majority of users.

No matter what you think of the Pixel line, you have to give Google credit for its pricing of the Pixel 4a. We seldom see companies offer lower prices for new smartphone releases, and the Pixel 4a is a wonderful exception to that rule.

Best Pixel 4a Deals: Where to buy Google’s new phone

When is the Pixel 4a being released?

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You can pre-order the Pixel 4a on Google’s own web store, along with Google Fi, Amazon, and Best Buy. The phone is out on August 20 in the U.S. and Japan, including to carriers across the country, but it remains unclear what that whole process will actually look like.

As for other countries, here’s the deal: Google has a staggered rollout for the Pixel 4a across the world. While pre-orders are available already in many countries, the phone is only being released on September 10 in:

  • Canada
  • Australia
  • Singapore
  • Taiwan
  • United Kingdom
  • Ireland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Italy
  • Spain

Have we reviewed the Pixel 4a?

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Okay, so the Pixel 4 has a great price and is available for purchase, but is it any good? Yes, yes it is. The Pixel 3a left the 4a with big shoes to fill, and for the most part, Google pulled it off with great success.

Just like its older sibling, the Pixel 4a sets a new standard for camera performance in this price range. Equipped with the same primary camera as the Pixel 4 and Google’s magical image processing, the Pixel 4a takes incredible photos. Take out the phone, press the shutter button, and you’re treated to a fantastic image every single time.

The camera isn’t the only talking point, however, as the rest of the Pixel 4a experience is every bit as good. The AMOLED display looks very nice, the Snapdragon 730G processor is plenty fast for virtually any task, and battery life is wonderfully reliable. Add all of that together with a form factor that’s easy to use in one hand and Google’s unmatched software, and the end result is one of the very best phones you can buy for under $400.

All of that said, we don’t blame you if you find the 4a to be a tad boring. The design is uninspired, the lack of any ultra-wide or telephoto cameras is a bummer, and not having a larger XL model could turn big phone-lovers away. If none of those things are an issue for you, though, the Pixel 4a is a darn good choice for your next Android.

Google Pixel 4a review: The best camera under $400, and a great budget phone

What specs does the Pixel 4a have?

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Given the price of the Pixel 4a, you shouldn’t go in expecting top-of-the-line specs. That wasn’t the point of the 3a, and that’s not the point here. What you do get is a spec sheet that offers a lot of value for the $350 asking price. Here’s what we’re working with:

Operating System Android 10
Display 5.8-inch AMOLED 2340 x 1080 60Hz refresh rate
Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 730G
Memory 6GB RAM LPDDR4x
Storage 128GB
Expandable Storage
Rear Camera 12.2MP dual-pixel 1.4-micron ƒ/1.7 OIS Phase detect auto focus
Front Camera 8MP 1.12-micron ƒ/2.0 Fixed focus 84-degree FoV
Security Rear capacitive fingerprint sensor
Audio Dual speakers 3.5mm headphone jack
Battery 3,140 mAh
Charging 18W wired charging USB-C
Water Resistance
Dimensions 144 x 69.4 x 8.2mm
Weight 143g
Colors Just Black

The Snapdragon 730G isn’t the most technically impressive chipset that Qualcomm currently offers, but paired with the same amount of RAM found in the flagship Pixel 4, you’d be hard-pressed to be upset with the performance offered by the 4a. It’s responsive, handles virtually every app with ease, and can even power you through graphically-intense games like Call of Duty: Mobile.

It’s also great that Google once again offers an AMOLED panel, ensuring that colors are vibrant and blacks are as deep as can be. Viewing angles aren’t the very best, but that’s a minor complaint in the grand scheme of things.

There’s also the Pixel 4a’s battery, which weighs in at 3,140 mAh. That doesn’t sound all that impressive at first glance, but in our testing, the Pixel 4a proved to easily get through a full day of heavy use with plenty of gas left in the tank.

Google Pixel 4a specs: Upgrades in performance, display and battery

How many cameras are on the Pixel 4a?

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In a world where phones are shipping with two, three, or even four rear cameras, the lone sensor on the Pixel 4a might look disappointing. Thankfully, we’re pleased to say that it’s anything but. The 12.2MP camera on the Pixel 4a is the exact same one found on the flagship Pixel 4, and simply put, it is outstanding.

Images are detailed, exposure levels are handled nicely, and even low-light shots look great. Above all else, the Pixel 4a does these things consistently. Just about every single time you press the shutter button to take a picture, it comes out looking fantastic.

Are we annoyed that there aren’t multiple cameras? Sure. The telephoto lens on the Pixel 4 is still one of the best on the market, and while Google has yet to jump on the ultra-wide bandwagon, we’d also love for that to change sooner rather than later. The quality of the Pixel 4a’s single camera does help make up for the lack of any secondary ones, but that’s something we hope to see changed in the eventual Pixel 5a.

Is it worth upgrading to the Pixel 4a from the Pixel 3a?

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There’s no denying that the Pixel 4a is an outstanding phone, but it didn’t magically get here on its own. Prior to the 4a, Google took the smartphone market by storm a year earlier with the Pixel 3a. That phone was built on a very similar foundation, and as a result of that, is still chugging along just fine here in 2020.

So, that begs the question — do Pixel 3a owners need to upgrade to the Pixel 4a? That depends.

If your Pixel 3a is starting to feel a little long in the tooth and you’re itching for something new, the Pixel 4a comes with a few nice upgrades. It has smaller display bezels, a newer processor, more RAM and storage, and is even a bit cheaper than the Pixel 3a’s retail price.

That said, if the Pixel 3a is still serving you just fine and you don’t feel compelled to upgrade, you can keep on using it without any issues. It may not be the flashiest phone these days, but the Pixel 3a still has plenty of kick left in it for existing owners.

Google Pixel 4a vs. Pixel 3a: Should you upgrade?

Should I get any accessories for the Pixel 4a?

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Thanks to its plastic construction, the Pixel 4a is a phone that you don’t have to baby nearly as much as ones made out of glass. That said, you should still consider getting some accessories to go with it.

First thing’s first, pick up a case for the phone! It takes just one drop to damage the back plastic or frame of the Pixel 4a, and a case is an easy and inexpensive way to preven that from happening. There are a ton of excellent options out there, including the official fabric case from Google and a myriad of third-party ones. Whether you want something slim and discrete or protective and bulky, there’s a case out there for you.

Similarly, you also need a screen protector. Whether it’s TPU film or tempered glass, a screen protector is the best way to keep your Pixel 4a’a display looking as good as can be. No one likes a shattered or scratched screen, and a screen protector keeps those things at bay.

Best Google Pixel 4a Cases in 2020
Best Google Pixel 4a Screen Protectors in 2020

Does the Pixel 4a support 5G?

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5G is a big talking point in the tech space right now, with more phones than ever supporting the new wireless standard. If you’re eager to get your hands on a 5G-capable handset for yourself, the Pixel 4a isn’t a good fit — at least not right now.

The Pixel 4a that’s currently available only connects to 4G LTE networks, and while that certainly isn’t a deal-breaker or anything, it is something you should keep in mind if you like being an early adopter for new technologies.

Thankfully, another handset is coming soon to remedy this. Alongside the launch of the Pixel 4a, Google also teased that the Pixel 4a 5G is coming later this fall for $499. According to the latest reports, the Pixel 4a 5G will offer a Snapdragon 765G processor, larger overall body, a second rear camera, and no headphone jack. Google hasn’t said when exactly in the fall the 4a 5G is launching, but we’re certainly keeping our eyes and ears open for more info.

Should I wait for the Pixel 5?

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Speaking of upcoming Pixel phones, this fall is also when we’ll see the Pixel 5. The Pixel 5 will be the highest-end Pixel that’s offered for 2020, though it should have a lot in common with the Pixel 4a 5G — namely the Snapdragon 765G processor.

We think Google could differentiate the phone with things like a glass/metal design and wireless charging, but it remains unclear how much of an impact that’ll have on the Pixel 5’s price.

2020 has proved to be a bizarre year for a lot of the tech industry, but especially so for Google. The Pixel 4a is just the start of more to come, so if it’s not catching your fancy, rest assured that Google isn’t done quite yet.

Google Pixel 5: News, Leaks, Release Date, Specs, and Rumors!

Latest Pixel

Google Pixel 4a

pixel-4a-render-front.jpg

$349 at Amazon
$350 at Best Buy

An outstanding camera, and then some

The Pixel 3a was hailed as one of the best affordable phones of 2019, and for 2020, we have its successor in the form of the Pixel 4a. The camera is better than ever, performance is plenty fast, the battery is reliable, and there’s even a headphone jack. Assuming you’re a fan of smaller phones and don’t mind the boring design, the Pixel 4a is one of the best deals out there.

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