Given the previous release cycles that Google have worked on, the release of the Pixel 8a this morning wasn’t exactly a surprise. The fact that it’s such an impressive devices with almost everything you’d want from a current generation device; was a pleasant surprise.

The Pixel ‘a’ range has represented the value side of the brand since its first release. At $849.00 for the Pixel 8a, which is marketed as “the most durable A-series phone yet,” that value offering continues.

As a starting point, we’ll take a look at the key specs:

  • A 6.1-inch Actua display that runs 1080 x 2400 at 430PPI and up to 120Hz
  • 128GB/256GB UFS 3.1 storage
  • 8GB of RAM
  • Driven by a Google Tensor G3 Chip and Titan M2 Security Coprocessor
  • Powered by a 4,492mAh battery capable of fast wired charging or Qi charging
  • Like the Pixel 8 and 8 Pro: Supported by 7 years of OS and Security updates

However, the specs only tell a small portion of the story, and the user experience is far from that.

AI is playing a more significant role in our connected lives

Gemini is going to be delivered to the Pixel 8a in the not-too-distant future, and it’s got a huge list of capabilities including: summarisation of emails, writing notes, adding images to communications and even planning trips.

But there’s other features like best take, magic editor and magic eraser within the camera software that can improve your results from the cameras.

Speaking of cameras, with a value device, you’ll lose that third lens, but you don’t lose the Google smarts that improve the processing of your images. In this instance you’ve got a 64MP Quad PD wide camera, and a 13MP ultrawide camera for your daily happy snaps.

If you’re a selfie expert, the 13MP front camera captures great colour and lighting while also being of high enough quality (offering certain levels of security) to offer biometric security for apps such as banking and health apps.

Within Australia, the Pixel 8a is available for pre-order and will be on-shelf at JB Hi-Fi, Officeworks and Harvey Norman from next Wednesday; May the 14th for — as earlier mentioned — $849.00. We’ve got a review unit on the test bench and look forward to sharing more in-depth thoughts on the Pixel 8a soon.

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“Google just dropped the Pixel 8a” – I hope they had it in a case 😉 this should be the last of the “A” series phones, if rumours are to be believed. Waiting for the 9 series to “drop” with a Bellroy case.