Google unveils Pixel 5a with 5G, its quietly capable mid-range phone
Google has quietly unveiled its new midrange phone for 2021, the Pixel 5a with 5G. As usual for this A series, it takes some of the best stuff from last year’s flagship, like the meaty cameras and battery, and trims the price down.
It’s getting harder to justify forking out over a grand for a flagship phone when the mid-rangers are more than capable enough. Google’s Pixel A-series is a good example, and if you can’t be bothered waiting a few months for the high-end Pixel 6 and 6 Pro, the newly announced Pixel 5a looks like it’ll do the job just fine.
The phone sports a 6.34-in OLED display, with a resolution of 2,400 x 1,080. It’s running a Snapdragon 765G processor and 6 GB of RAM, with 128 GB of storage space and a beefy 4,680-mAh battery. Google says that battery life can be stretched to 48 hours using modes like Adaptive Battery and Extreme Battery Saver.
There’s a decent set of cameras on the Pixel 5a – a 12-MP main camera and a 16-MP ultrawide lens on the back, supported by an 8-MP selfie cam around the front. These allow for some nifty photography tricks, like Night Sight for capturing in low light conditions, Live HDR+ for previewing dynamic range before a snap, and Portrait Light, which lets you adjust the brightness and position of light even after a photo is taken.
To top it all off, the Pixel 5a has 5G connectivity, a water-resistance rating of IP67, dual SIM card slots, and even a rarely-seen-anymore 3.5 mm audio jack.
All up, those are some decent specs, beating last year’s flagship Pixel 5 in terms of things like battery and display size. They aren’t quite as powerful as Samsung’s Galaxy A series, but they’re also not as expensive.
The Pixel 5a is a bit of a mid-range stopgap before Google unleashes its next generation phones, the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro, around October or November. No doubt they will look like beasts compared to this humble little machine, but they’ll also come with beastly price tags, and a lot of people don’t really need all those bells and whistles anyway.
The Pixel 5a is available for preorder in the US and Japan, for US$449. It’s due to be released on August 26.