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    HomeTechnologiesThe Google Pixel 8a is the new price-performance star

    The Google Pixel 8a is the new price-performance star

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    With the new Pixel 8a, Google is offering a smartphone that has a lot to offer at a reasonable price. The hardware is strong, the software and functions are top-notch, and the long support period is exemplary. However, there is an even more interesting alternative from within the company.

    If you are looking for a powerful but affordable smartphone that won't need to be replaced in a few years, you should keep an eye on the new Google Pixel 8a. With a starting price of around 550 euros, it also competes with devices that are twice as expensive and usually can't keep up in the long term.

    Seven years of software updates

    The predecessor was already able to convince ntv.de in the practical test with a strong price-performance ratio, but the Pixel 8a is even more attractive. This is not only due to its good hardware and software, but also to the industry-leading long support period: As with its current flagship duo, Google promises to keep the Pixel 8a's operating system up to date for at least seven years. Similarly good mid-range smartphones usually can't even come close to keeping up.

    The Pixel 8a looks very similar to the Pixel 8, and the cheaper device is also powered by Google's current Tensor G3 chip, which has 8 gigabytes (GB) of RAM. But there are small differences. Among other things, the newcomer has a slightly smaller 6.1-inch display, but is a bit larger. The back is made of plastic, not glass, and with IP67, the A-Class cannot be submerged for as long as the 8, which has protection class IP68. The camera equipment is a little weaker and the new A-Class only works with WiFi 6e instead of WiFi 7.

    Magnificent display

    In everyday life, however, none of this plays a role. The cheaper plastic on the back is actually an advantage. The matte surface is more grippy than the smooth glass of the Pixel 8 and doesn't smudge. And if you don't know it, you won't even notice that you're dealing with plastic.

    The AMOLED display of the Pixel 8a is a beauty. With 430 pixels per inch (ppi), it is very sharp, delivers beautiful, natural colors, offers crisp contrasts and can shine brightly when needed. The maximum refresh rate is 120 Hertz (Hz).

    Older but good cameras

    Google has made savings primarily on the dual camera on the back, which the 8a has retained unchanged from its predecessor. But that is not a major disadvantage, because the photos are good, as confirmed by Stiftung Warentest, among others. They also benefit from the new Tensor chip.

    The main camera (aperture f/1.89) produces very appealing images with 64 megapixels (MP) in both bright daylight and low light. They are well lit and have high contrast, show lots of details and offer strong but realistic colors. The videos of the Pixel 8a are also impressive, with 4K recordings possible at up to 60 frames per second.

    The "magic eraser" automatically detects people in the background, and the finishing touches can be done manually. The "magic eraser" automatically detects people in the background, and the finishing touches can be done manually.

    The “magic eraser” automatically detects people in the background, and the finishing touches can be done manually.

    (Photo: kwe)

    With enough light, the 13 megapixels of the ultra-wide-angle camera are enough to take good photos. It's just a shame that you can't take close-ups with it, which some users will miss more than a telephoto lens. The digital zoom shots of the 8a's main camera are OK, but can't keep up with optical magnification.

    AI flagship

    There are no limitations in the AI ​​functions, however; the Pixel 8a can perform the same “magical” tricks as the flagships. Most of them work on the device, so they don't require a connection to the Google server. This includes the ability to automatically or manually remove distracting objects from photos, which works amazingly well.

    AI can also be used to effectively create an image from a series of group photos in which everyone is looking into the camera, filter out noise in videos, or convert voice recordings into text. Conversations in two languages ​​can also be translated offline in real time. New features are added regularly, most recently including the ability to start a search by circling an object on the display with your finger.

    The battery has a capacity of 4492 milliampere hours (mAh), which is a little higher than the battery of its predecessor. The Pixel 8a is not a long-distance runner, but it can usually easily last a day if you don't use it too hard. If you run out of battery, you can charge it not only via a USB-C cable, but also – much more slowly – inductively.

    Conclusion

    The Pixel 8a is a new game changer in the mid-range. There may be similarly powerful devices for around 550 euros, but Google scores with the best AI functions currently available and, above all, with seven years of software updates. However, the Pixel 8a is not without competition in its price range, as the Pixel 8, which was launched last autumn for just under 800 euros, is now available for around 600 euros.

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