Smartphones like the Google Pixel 7a promise standards that are nearly unattainable — flagship-grade features at a price that does not burn an irreversible hole in the pocket. In an attempt to offer the best of both worlds to the consumer, Google has launched its latest in India, which I’ve been trying out for week or so. And here’s if it strikes a beautiful balance.

Design and aesthetics 

Aesthetics is an aspect that I’ve never been disappointed by in the Pixel line-up. The Google Pixel 7a remains a classy-looking device with the signature matte aluminum wraparound and a monotone rear panel. The smartphone comes in three colours — Charcoal, Sea and Snow — of which Sea looks like the prettiest of the lot. 

The device weighs just about 193 grams and although it shares the same screen size with the Pixel 6a — 6.1-inches across — I prefer the Pixel 7a’s form factor which has a wider grip as opposed to the Pixel 6a’s marginally taller, narrower form factor. Carried over are the under-display fingerprint sensor and the exclusion of a headphone jack. 

The 6.1-inch OLED display looks beautiful and has been upgraded to a 90Hz refresh rate, not that the 60 Hz refresh rate from last year gave users much reasons for complaint. Outdoors visibility is sufficient, and overall the design and form factor is ideal for someone who’s actively looking for a compact screen, and isn’t looking to downsize from a bigger one. 


The camera island gets a major upgrade from last year’s Pixel 6a. The primary camera on the Pixel 7a is 64-MP Quad PD Quad Bayer wide camera, along with a 13-MP ultrawide camera. The selfie camera is a 13 MP camera with fixed focus. Shots taken both outdoors and indoors are a notch better than Pixel 6a, more saturated and better at lighting up darker aspects in the frame.

Video stabilisation is also pretty decent however, photos and videos taken while zoomed in a bit turned out to be grainy. Night photography is quickly executed with snappy shutter-time. All the AI features that add to the allure of Pixel photography find a space in this device. You get the flagship features such as  Photo Unblur, Magic Eraser and Night Sight — all of which work brilliantly well. Real Tone continues to deliver realistic Indian skin tones, and Face Unblur does as impressive a job as AI can at this stage, in sharpening up profiles. 

Tech Specs 

Packed with the same in-house Google Tensor G2, that powers the flagship Google Pixel 7 Pro and Pixel 7, it’s no surprise that the phone runs snappily. Google has also included the Titan M2 security chip that has been designed by the company to prioritise user privacy and protection. 

On synthetic benchmarking tests, the Pixel 7a lands just above the Pixel 6a and below the likes of OnePlus 10R and Redmi K40 Pro. In real life usage though, there were no lags or stutters. The only exception was when changing wallpapers, previews took an annoyingly long time to render, with the image remaining blurred for a longer time than it should. However, this seems to be an issue on the flagship Pixel 7 Pro as well, and hence not unique to the Pixel 7a. 

It’s disappointing to experience the heating issues the phone has, however mild they might be. Not even 10 seconds had passed while shooting a video on the phone, when I could feel the top left quadrant starting to get quite warm. Same goes for extended gaming sessions, with graphic-heavy games. 

The Pixel 7a is shipped with a fixed configuration of 8 GB RAM and 128 GB storage. Users who invest in a Pixel 7a because of its camera capabilities might want — and rightfully deserve — a larger storage option. 

The clean Android experience awaits users of this phone with Android 13. Zero bloatware continues to hold its undeniable sway on Android fans, myself included. Google has included five years of security upgrades on the Pixel 7a, however OS updates continue only for three years from the time of purchase. Should the need for after-sales service arise, Google has just opened up a host of new walk-in service centres and you’ll no longer have to ship the product off to their centralised repair centre. 

The Google Pixel 7a is packed with a 4,385 mAh battery, and just about made it through the day with heavy usage. As the device supports 18W charging, the charging time was painfully slow. It took almost 1.5 hours to charge up fully from zero with a non-Google 67 W charger. This device has wireless charging so if you have a Qi charging pad lying around, your phone will be spending a fair amount of time lying on it. 


Recommending the Google Pixel 7a isn’t as black-and-white as I’d have liked it to be. On one hand, I’m a huge fan of the clean interface, endless customisations, fast processor, decent camera and the overall build quality. On the other hand, the charging time is frustrating as is the heating issue. The latter is hopefully something Google can fix with yet another software rollout. Adding in more storage options wouldn’t have hurt Google either. If you’ve been looking to upgrade your mid-range Pixel for sometime now, but don’t want to splurge on the Pixel 7 Pro or even the Pixel 7, this might be a good buy. If you’re deciding between the Pixel 6a and the Pixel 7a, this one’s a clear winner. Overall, despite its hiccups, the Google Pixel 7a delivers an appealing package for a flagship-adjacent, at this price point. 

Price - ₹43,999 
Pros - Vivid display, upgraded primary camera, flagship processor 
Cons - Battery life, charging time, gets a bit warm 
If you’re looking for a smartphone within the sub-45k range, you might also want to consider the OnePlus 11R, vivo v27 Pro and the Nothing Phone 1.