Specs showdown: Google Pixel 5 vs Pixel 4a with 5G

Posted: 2 October 2020 5:12 pm

Pixel 4a with 5G

This week Google made two new smartphones available for pre-order: the Pixel 5 and Pixel 4a with 5G. If you're tossing up which model to buy, here are the key features to know about.

Google Pixel 5 vs Pixel 4a (5G): Specifications

RAM, battery life, processing power and inbuilt software are all important considerations when choosing a new phone. Here's how the Pixel 4a with 5G compares with the Pixel 5:

Google Pixel 5

Google Pixel 4a 5G

Product Name Google Pixel 5 Google Pixel 4a 5G
Display size 6 6.24
Operating system Android 10 Android 10
Height (mm) 144.7 153.9
Width (mm) 70 74
Depth (mm) 8 8.2
Weight (g) 151 168
Battery size (mAh) 4,000 3,140
Front camera (1) megapixels 8 8
Rear camera (1) megapixels 12.2 12.2
Rear camera (2) megapixels 16
Water Resistance IP52 IP52
Wi-Fi connectivity 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac
Network Category Speed Category 12 Category 12

The Pixel 5 boasts 25% more RAM than the Pixel 4a with 5G (8GB vs 6GB). It also has a newer, more efficient processor and a larger battery. Let's take a look at the key difference in further detail.

Google Pixel 5 first impressions

Google Pixel 5 vs Pixel 4a (5G): Price

Google has decided to simplify things with its new Pixel range. There is only one version of each phone available, both with 128GB of storage. Previous Pixel phones offered different storage capacities as well as a larger XL model.

Here's how much each model will set you back:

  • Pixel 5: $999
  • Pixel 4a with 5G: $799

Winner: Pixel 4a with 5G

Google Pixel 5 vs Pixel 4a (5G): Design

The Pixel 5 comes in a choice of two colours: Just Black and Sorta Sage. The Pixel 4a with 5G is currently only available in black. Otherwise, both phones have a very similar construction, boasting the same bezel-free "hole-punch" display and back-mounted fingerprint sensor.

Winner: Draw

Google Pixel 5 vs Pixel 4a (5G): Display

The Google Pixel 5 comes with a 6.0-inch OLED display. The Pixel 4a with 5G packs in a slightly bigger screen at 6.2 inches. Both displays have an identical native resolution of 2340x1080 pixels. The Pixel 5 has a slightly higher pixel density due to the smaller display size: 432ppi vs 413ppi. It also comes with a 90Hz "Smooth Display" refresh rate, which the Pixel 4a with 5G lacks.

Winner: Pixel 5

Google Pixel 5 vs Pixel 4a (5G): Cameras

The Pixel 5's rear camera comprises a 12.2MP f/1.7 dual-pixel lens and a 16 MP ƒ/2.2 ultra-wide lens. The front camera sports an 8MP sensor and ƒ/2.0 aperture. Surprisingly, these specs are identical to the Pixel 4a with 5G – you don't need to compromise on your photos by buying the cheaper phone.

Both models also provide the same camera software (Night Sight, Top Shot, Portrait mode, Super Res Zoom, Motion Auto-Focus, Live HDR+, Frequent Faces, Dual exposure controls, Cinematic Pan, Ultra-wide lens and Portrait Light).

Winner: Draw

Google Pixel 5 vs Pixel 4a (5G): Battery

The Pixel 5 comes with a 4,080mAh battery. Despite having a slightly larger display, the Pixel 4a with 5G uses a smaller 3,885mAh battery. You should therefore get a couple of extra hours out of the Pixel 5 before you need to head for your charger. (With that said, both phones should comfortably see you through a full day of usage.)

The Pixel 5 also comes with Battery Share, a reverse-charging tool that allows you to charge other devices wirelessly through your phone.

Winner: Pixel 5

Our pick: Pixel 4a with 5G

Despite winning most of the above categories, we think the Pixel 5 is pipped to the post by the Pixel 4a with 5G due to its lower price point. For $200 less, you're getting most of the same features including the camera, hole-punch display and 5G network access.

If you're looking to save as much money as possible, the original Pixel 4 is also worth considering. It's currently selling for $599 on the Google Store and comes with many of the same features.

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