Google announced the Pixel 6a on May 11 at its I/O developer conference. It is similar to the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro, which came out in October 2021.
The Pixel A has the same design language as the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro and the same processor. If you choose the Pixel A, what do you miss out on, and how does it compare to the flagship models?
We looked at the differences between the Pixel 6a, the Pixel 6, and the Pixel 6 Pro to help you decide which is right.
The Pixel 6a is the cheapest of the three versions, with a starting price of $199. It’s a more compact smartphone, and as we’ll see later, the display and camera suffer as a result.
The Pixel 6 falls between the Pixel 6a and Pixel 6 Pro in terms of price and features, with the Pixel 6 being significantly more expensive. Compared to the 6 Pro, the Pixel 6a delivers more than the 6a, but it has a few drawbacks.
The Pixel 6 Pro is more expensive but has many more features. Compared to the likes of Samsung and Apple’s flagship smartphones, it appears to be reasonably priced, as is the Pixel 6.
While the three Pixel phones—the Pixel 6a, Pixel 6, and Pixel 6 Pro—all have similar looks, there are some subtle differences between the three.
The Pixel 6a, Pixel 6, and Pixel 6 Pro all have a conspicuous horizontal camera housing that extends the entire width of the back. On all three cameras, the flash module is located to the right of the lenses in the housing.
The camera bar is framed in all three cases by an alloy core that wraps around the sides. The 6 Pro has a polished finish, while the Pixel 6 has a matte finish, giving the Pro a more premium appearance. It’s composite on the Pixel 6a’s back, while Gorilla Glass VIctus is used on the Pro model’s, making it more scratch-resistant than Gorilla Glass VIctus seen on the Pixel 6. All three are available in various shades.
Pixel 6a, Pixel 6, and Pixel 6 Pro all contain an under-display fingerprint sensor and a punch hole camera at the top of the display. However, the 6 Pro has a slightly curved display.
Compared to the IP68 water and dust resistance of the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro, only the Pixel 6a is water and dust resistant to IP67 standards. The Pixel 6 Pro is the largest and heaviest of the three devices, while the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6a are the smallest and lightest.
- Pixel 6a: 6.1-inch, Full HD, OLED, 60Hz
- Pixel 6: 6.4-inch, Full HD+, OLED, 90Hz
- Pixel 6 Pro: 6.7-inch, Quad HD+, LTPO OLED, 120Hz
The OLED screen on the Google Pixel 6a is 6.1 inches, which is a bit smaller than the Pixel 6’s 6.4-inch OLED screen.
Both devices have flat screens with Full HD+ resolutions of 2400 x 1080 pixels. The Pixel 6 has a pixel density of 411ppi, while the Pixel 6a has a pixel density of 429ppi. The Pixel 6 has a refresh rate of 90Hz, while the Pixel 6a only has a refresh rate of 60Hz. This means that scrolling on the 6a won’t be as smooth as it is on the other Pixel 6 models.
The Pixel 6 Pro, on the other hand, has a curved LTPO OLED screen that is 6.7 inches wide. This makes it a little bigger than the Pixel 6 and a lot bigger than the Pixel 6a. The curved screen also makes it stand out from the other two.
The Pixel 6 Pro has a resolution of 3120 x 1440 pixels, which is Quad HD+. The pixel density is 512ppi, and the refresh rate ranges from 10Hz to 120Hz.
All three models support HDR and have the same high brightness mode, always-on display, Now Playing, and At A Glance features, so no matter which model you choose, you won’t miss out on any features. Read: Google Pixel Fold — Everything We Know So Far
The last thing to mention is that the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro are both protected by Gorilla Glass Victus, while the Pixel 6a is only protected by Gorilla Glass 3. This means that the flagship models will be less likely to get scratches.
Hardware and specs
- Pixel 6a: Google Tensor, 6GB RAM, 12GB storage, 4400mAh
- Pixel 6: Google Tensor chip, 8GB RAM, 128/256GB storage, 4614mAh
- Pixel 6 Pro: Google Tensor chip, 12GB RAM, 128/256GB storage, 5003mAh
Tensor, Google’s own system-on-chip, is found in the Pixel 6a, 6, and 6 Pro and the Titan M2 security coprocessor. All artificial intelligence and machine learning applications, from computational photography to real-time translation, operate on the Tensor chip, which was designed with security in mind.
The Pixel 6a has just one option: 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. The Pixel 6 features 8GB RAM and 128GB or 256GB storage options, while the Pixel 6 Pro has 12GB RAM and 128GB or 256GB storage options. Read More; The Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro: Everything You Need To Know
A 4400mAh battery powers the Pixel 6a, down from the 4614mAh battery that powers the Pixel 6. Pixel 6 Pro has a little larger 5003mAh battery than both; however, keep in mind that it has a larger display to power.
In Extreme Battery Saver mode, the Pixel 6a can last up to 72 hours, while the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro can only manage 48 hours. Despite this, Fast Charge is available for the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro, which claims a 50% charge in 30 minutes but must be purchased separately.
Wireless charging and Battery Share, often known as reverse wireless charging, are both supported by the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro. Both are missing from the Pixel 6a.
- Pixel 6a: Dual camera (12.2MP + 12MP), 8MP front
- Pixel 6: Dual camera (50MP + 12MP), 8MP front
- Pixel 6 Pro: Triple camera (50MP + 48MP + 12MP), 11.1MP front
Regarding the cameras, these three devices are most different from each other.
The Google Pixel 6a has a main camera with 12.2 megapixels, f/1.7 aperture, 1.4m pixels, and an ultrawide camera with 12 megapixels, f/2.2 aperture, and 1.25m pixels. The main camera has a field of view of 77 degrees, while the ultrawide sensor has a field of view of 114 degrees.
The Google Pixel 6 has a 50-megapixel main camera with 1.2m pixels and an aperture of f/1.85. It also has a 12-megapixel ultrawide camera with an aperture of f/2.2 and 1.25m pixels. The main camera has a FOV of 82 degrees, while the ultrawide camera has a FOV of 114 degrees.
The Pixel 6 Pro has a triple-back camera with a 50-megapixel main sensor, a 12-megapixel ultrawide sensor, and a 48-megapixel telephoto sensor. The Pixel 6 has a single 50-megapixel main sensor and a 12-megapixel ultrawide sensor. This third sensor has 0.8m pixels and an aperture of f/3.5. It has a 4x optical zoom and a 20x digital zoom.
In telephoto, this is a big difference. The Pixel 6’s main camera has a digital zoom of up to 7x Super Res Zoom, but the Pro has a 4x optical zoom and a digital zoom of up to 20x Super Res Zoom. This makes the Pro much more versatile for taking long-range shots.
The Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro has laser detect autofocus and optical and electrical image stabilization. The Pixel 6a has standard autofocus with dual-pixel phase detection, but it also has OIS and EIS.
All three have many of the same features, such as Magic Eraser, Real Tone, Face Unblur, Night Sight, Cinematic Pan, and Portrait mode. In fact, Motion Blur is the only thing the Pixel 6a doesn’t have that the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro do. Read Also; Google Pixel 7 Pro Tipped to Feature Brighter Display Than Pixel 6 Pro
Regarding the front cameras, both the Pixel 6a and Pixel 6 have an 8-megapixel sensor with an f/2.0 aperture, 1.12m pixels, and an 84-degree field of view. The Pixel 6 Pro has an 11.2-megapixel sensor with an aperture of f/2.2, 1.22m pixels, and a field of view of 94 degrees.
The Pixel 6a, Pixel 6, and Pixel 6 Pro have rear cameras that can record 4K video, but only the Pixel 6 Pro has a front camera that can record 4K video. Both the Pixel 6a and the Pixel 6 can record 1080p video from the front camera.
The Pixel 6a, Pixel 6, and Pixel 6 Pro all have very similar designs, but the Pixel 6 Pro has a curved screen and a triple rear camera, making it a little more premium than the Pixel 6, while the Pixel 6 has a more premium finish than the Pixel 6a.
As you move up the Pixel 6 models, you get more features, like a bigger screen, faster refresh rate, better cameras, more RAM and storage, and bigger batteries. You have to pay for those step-ups, though, and you might find that you don’t need some of them or are willing to give up some things to save money.
For some people, the Google Pixel 6 Pro will be worth every penny, and it is a great device. However, the Pixel 6 is also a great device, and let’s not forget that even though the Pixel 6a makes a few changes here and there, it still has the same design, the same chipset, and 5G for a very low price.