5 reasons to pick the Google Pixel XL over the Apple iPhone 7 Plus

The holiday season is well behind us, but you might be one of the many still stuck with choosing what flagship to go for next. Maybe your carrier contract is due to be over soon, or maybe you're just waiting for that Pixel XL to become more accessible before biting the bullet and making the final call. And, of course, you may be stuck in that eternal vortex of indecisiveness over which phone you'd like better.

Any smartphone geek will tell you the two major players that came out in the second half of 2016 are Apple's iPhone 7 and Google's Pixel. The first one is, obviously, the most popular smartphone out there, and Apple sure wants to keep it that way. While the Pixel's sales are nowhere near the iPhone's, the device is a Google fan's dream, with an excellent camera, amazing Android experience on board, timely updates, and some more goodies. Its larger sibling, the Pixel XL, is also drawing a lot of attention, not only because it's awesome but also because the Android scene took a couple of hits at the end of 2016, limiting user choice. Samsung's heavy-hitting phablet — the Note 7 — did a Nick Cage Wicker Man performance and went up in flames, and the LG V20, despite being an interesting and solid device, still struggles with drawing user attention.

So, let's say you are trying to decide between the Pixel and the iPhone 7 (or their larger variants, the XL and the Plus). We can't promise that we can make that choice for you, but we sure can list some benefits, which the Pixel has over the iPhone. Don't worry, we can do the same for Apple's handset, too — here it is.

1. A better camera

It can be argued that it's marginally better, but it still is. Google didn't put an optical image stabilizing module in neither of the two Pixels, but it obviously employed some fantastic software algorithms to make up for that. To top it off, the HDR+ mode, which you should ideally always keep on, does an amazing job at keeping the exposures balanced, the colors true to life, and the photos awesome.

In our 1v1 battle reviews, the Pixels either performed on par with the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus or they beat them in some of the more challenging shots. Bravo, Google!

2. Lighter and more compact

Despite the fact that both phones sport a rather large, 5.5-inch screen, the Pixel XL offers a higher screen-to-body ratio, as in — the actual phone body around the display is smaller. This translates into a slightly more compact device to hold, though, a tad thicker. But the Pixel also wins in terms of weight — it measures at 5.93 oz (168 g), while the iPhone 7 Plus is heavier at 6.63 oz (188 g). They may look negligible on paper, but those 20 grams certainly make a difference when handling your device with one hand or even if it slips a bit.

3. Audio accessory compatibility

Apple's iPhone 7 Plus lacks an audio jack — a well-known fact, well beaten to a pulp by now. Sorry, we just couldn't come up with a courageous punchline, so we just stated it bluntly. But the 3.5 mm connector is not used for headphones alone — it connects to portable speakers, car audio, home systems, et cetera.

Yes, the iPhone 7 Plus does come with a Lightning-to-headphones adapter and yes, you can buy as many of them as you wish for $9 apiece, but in every case — if you tend to connect your phone to a lot of 3.5 mm inputs, the lack of a port on the iPhone will be a noticeable nuisance to you.

4. Unlimited storage for full-quality photos and videos

Google Photos is already awesome, since it allows any user to store an infinite amount photos in high quality (up to 12 MP) in the cloud. If you wish to save your pictures in original resolution, they will start taking up your Google Drive space, which means you will need to pay for more gigabytes. However, Pixel owners get original quality photo storage for free!

As a contrast, iPhone users get 5 GB of iCloud for free (which is also used for backups and apps), and once those are full — it's time to pay for extra storage (or use Google Photos at High Resolution backup).

5. A smarter assistant

Google has made great strides to develop the Google Assistant into a smart, conversational AI that can follow dialogue threads and learn about you as time progresses. It's a feature that's sometimes frighteningly smart, yet undeniably fascinating. If you are one who is not freaked out about Assistant "learning" about their life and habits, don't feel awkward when giving verbal commands to your phone, and want to have a great AI in your pocket, the Pixel is where it's at.

Need more information? Here's more!

Related phones

Pixel XL
  • Display 5.5" 1440 x 2560 pixels
  • Camera 12.3 MP / 8 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 821, Quad-core, 2150 MHz
  • Storage 128 GB
  • Battery 3450 mAh(32h talk time)



1. EC112987

Posts: 1215; Member since: Nov 10, 2014

You can have both! Best of both worlds

4. sgodsell

Posts: 7368; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

There is another major point that was completely missed. Daydream VR offers the best mobile VR experience currently on the market. It's even written on every Pixel box sold. Not to mention some of those VR games and apps just literally blow away of the 2D apps on an iPhone. No comparison. Not to mention a higher resolution AMOLED display. Plus split screen multitasking, which is completely missing on every iPhone. Hands down Pixel is superior.

8. Leo_MC

Posts: 7432; Member since: Dec 02, 2011

Dude, you have an obsession with this VR crap!

10. sgodsell

Posts: 7368; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

Well, once you try it, it's totally awesome. People talk about games on smartphones all the time. Even phonearena posts articles on new games all the time. However if there is VR versions, then they totally beat the crap out of any 2D games on smartphones. Hands down. But putting that aside. It still doesn't change the fact that Daydream VR is a great feature and that it's posted on every Pixel box. So what about the higher resolutions? Hmm. What about the split screen multitasking? Actually it's not only split screen multitasking, but Android has had real multitasking for years. iPhones to this day do not have real multitasking. Also what about quick charging for the Pixels? What about the better image stabilization on the Pixels. There is a lot of things that are better or superior on the Pixels. Period.

2. Stranger

Posts: 73; Member since: Jan 19, 2017

What about daydream ?

3. aman5mathur

Posts: 241; Member since: Mar 28, 2014

Better screen resolution, open source platform, better drop protection with gorilla glass 4, faster battery charging........ Forgetting those? (OS choice can be excused though) List some real reasons PA.

5. aman5mathur

Posts: 241; Member since: Mar 28, 2014

But anyways both the devices have their set of pros and cons I like them both equally and it really comes down to your personal choice of priorities of features and platform

9. sgtdisturbed47

Posts: 966; Member since: Feb 02, 2012

Pixel XL having worse battery life than the smaller Pixel is what will keep me far away from it. I got spoiled by the Note 4, Note 5, and iPhone 6S Plus with being able to use my phone for up to 72 hours in between charges, 48 hours if I'm on it a lot more. Low power modes really come in handy.

11. marorun

Posts: 5029; Member since: Mar 30, 2015

Pixel XL rate better overall than iphone 7+ on GSM arena wich is much more accurate than phonearena. only thing iphone is good is for webbrowsing.

12. chillywill95831

Posts: 11; Member since: Apr 05, 2015

You literally have no idea what you're talking about with relation to the Pixel XL's battery life. What was your SOT (screen on time) for the devices that you say were so much better. I'm currently sitting here with a Pixel XL with SOT of 6h 11m and 18 plus hours of standby time. See for yourself....https://goo.gl/photos/EsupDA6aVkbvdrdh​8 Please speak what you know as opposed to some biased review. If there's one thing that's great about the pixel XL(and there are many), it's the fact that the battery life is outstanding. You're totally misinformed!

14. ibend

Posts: 6747; Member since: Sep 30, 2014

oh well.. it's hard enough to find 5 reason to pick i7+ on other article, they even include longer update, telephoto sensor (which still can't beat pixel XL detail), and waterproofing (which pixelXL actually have)... they can easily write 10 or 15 reason to pick pixelXL, but it's impossible to write 10 reason to pick i7+ :-/

6. bucky

Posts: 3784; Member since: Sep 30, 2009

The unlimited storage is something I wish Apple included. Their cloud storage is too expensive.

7. Plasticsh1t

Posts: 3106; Member since: Sep 01, 2014

One more reason: xda support. For me it's a major decision to buy a phone.

13. sissy246

Posts: 7112; Member since: Mar 04, 2015

So what happened to the other article "5 reasons to pick the iphone 7 plus over the Pixel XL" it seems to have disappeared PA.

15. sissy246

Posts: 7112; Member since: Mar 04, 2015

LOL now it's back

16. skyline88

Posts: 697; Member since: Jul 15, 2013

3T over Pixel anytime, anyday.

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