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- Google to use AI to help disabled communicate
- Google adds video calling to smart home display
- Google offers cheaper Pixel phones to spur sales
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- Google tries to set itself apart in AI, hardware
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The flagship Pixel devices have always been revered, even coveted. They took over the mantle from the Nexus phones - phones with the best of Google. They get the updates before anyone else. And despite the constant churn of devices in the market, they get software updates for a whole 3 years.
With that groundwork laid, it’s time to talk about what Google has been cooking up. Comparing the 3a XL side-by-side with the 3XL, you can instantly see the family resemblance but you can also see compromises (chiefly the polycarbonate back). When the renders of the 3a and 3a XL leaked a few weeks ago, they only showed the back of the phones. I guess it was wishful thinking to expect them to be the same ID but with a mid-range processor.
The smaller Pixel 3a is priced at Rs 39,999 (4/64GB) while the larger 3a XL is Rs 44,999 (4/64GB). Both will be available in Clearly White or Just Black. The Purple-ish (that’s the actual colour name) shown in the leaked renders is not launching in India, at least to begin with.
Google Unveils Pixel 3a at 2019 I/O: Here's What You Need To Know About The New Device
Pixel 3a was unveiled at the 2019 Google I/O event today. The Pixel 3a came with major upgrades from its predecessor. The new smartphone sports a better camera, a smarter Google Assistant and also has Digital well-being features.
Here's a sneak peak into the specifications of Google's Pixel 3a.
One of the main reasons why people choose Pixel is for the quality of the camera. Google proved that computational photography is more than a match for dual, triple and quad rear cameras. The bigger challenge is to provide the same camera experience and results at a lower price point. So these phones have kept the rear camera hardware intact: the same 12.2MP f1.8 rear camera with OIS. It also gets all the same software features (Night Sight, Super Res Zoom, Portrait mode, Top Shot, HDR+, Playground AR features) plus a new Time Lapse mode.
The software is pure Android 9 Pie - it feels smooth and fluid. There’s no bloatware. With day-to-day use, you won’t even notice that it doesn’t have a flagship processor. That only comes into play with gaming and heavier tasks. And thanks to promised updates, you’ll always have the latest security updates and OS before anyone else. The camera feels just as fast though we’ll have to compare results with the 3 XL for a proper verdict. Look out for that in the full review.
Both phones still have amoled displays and you get punchy colour and deep contrast too. The notch from the 3 XL is gone so both of the 3a phones have a standard display with larger bezels. This is both good and bad. Good because the notch on the 3 XL was quite large and polarising. Bad because it makes these 40-45k phones look a couple of generations older.
Summing up, you’ll be giving up 6 key things if you go with a 3a device instead of the 3: the dual front camera is gone, performance (both 3a phones are Snapdragon 670 instead of a flagship 800 series), build quality (both are plastic instead of glass), waterproofing (there’s no IP rating), wireless charging and they don’t offer unlimited storage with Google Photos at full resolution. That last one’s a shame because we feel that’s something Google could have easily offered.
On the upside, the amoled displays still give you screen off notifications & Now Playing. The Titan M security module is carried over, you get the same fingerprint scanner, Active Edge (squeeze for Google Assistant), an 18Watt fast charger in the box, stereo speakers and eSIM functionality.
It’s a capable phone at a much lower price than the Pixel 3/3XL. However, there are three new flagships coming soon: OnePlus 7, Zenfone 6 and Nubia Red Magic 3. All of them will have the latest Snapdragon 855, more RAM and more storage. And we think they’re all going to be priced in the vicinity of the Pixel 3a and 3a XL. That’s something Google needs to be worried about.