The Google Pixel 6a lands with camera might, Tensor, and unbeatable price

The budget Google Pixel 6a lands with Tensor processor and camera might
The long-awaited budget Google Pixel 6a phone appeared centerstage during the I/O conference keynote, together with a Google Pixel 7 shoutout, and the folks from Mountain View shared some intimate Pixel 6a specs and feature details that differ from the rumors swirling around before its announcement.

Back in January, Google leaked the phone by the means of a coloring book distributed to people from the closed Pixel Superfans group, a dedicated community of Google aficionados who often get loot bags from the company. Lo and behold, that cool new Pixel 6a design got officially confirmed today as well as the rock bottom price and the belated availability.

Google Pixel 6a price and release date

  • Price: $449
  • Preorders: July 21
  • Release: July 28
  • Three colors: Charcoal, Chalk, and Sage
  • Pixel 6a country availability: Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Puerto Rico, Singapore, Spain, Taiwan, United Kingdom, United States

The Pixel 6a was rumored to be released in the summer, most likely in July, quite a bit after after its announcement, and those rumors materialized as a July 21 Pixel 6a preorder date, and a July 28 Pixel 6a release, respectively. 

The Pixel 6a price was supposed to be the usual great $399 price tag that brings unbeatable value with the first budget handset to get Android 13 at that price, but it will cost slightly more, at $449, still a great price.

New Pixel 6a camera features

  • Enhanced Magic Eraser changes the colors of distracting objects
  • Night Sight
  • Real Tone

As expected, the Google Pixel 6a uses a camera setup very similar to its predecessor, including a 12.2MP main camera and a 12MP ultrawide one, but the new Tensor chipset that comes straight from the Pixel 6 series will make all the difference with its advanced image processing subsystem. 

Unfortunately, the phone doesn't get the Motion Mode camera option from its more expensive siblings that keeps a fast-moving subject in focus, minimizing blur, but then again it is a budget option with different sensors, albeit the same chipset. You do get Night Sight and Real Tone skin colors, though, as well as the improved Magic Eraser option that can now adjust the colors of the background objects to boot.

We've heard plenty of good news about the improved camera kit on the Pixel 6a, despite the inclusion of the good ol' Sony IMX363 in the phone's photography roster. Since the rumors that the Pixel 6a could sport the 50MP Samsung GN1 sensor of the Pixel 6/Pro didn't materialize, we are only left with the ultrawide camera upgrade compared to the Pixel 5a specs, in the form of a larger sensor pixel size to get more light in. 

The Pixel 5a specs include a 12MP wide/16MP ultrawide camera setup, while this kit above features a different 12MP ultrawide camera sensor with much larger individual pixels which would let it take more light in.

When coupled with the new Tensor chipset by Google and its custom imaging processor, the Pixel 6a photography should be a step above the one from the Pixel 5a so we keep our hopes high for the new budget Android handset that just got unveiled by Google.

Google Pixel 6a specs at a glance

  • 6.1-inch 1080p 60Hz display
  • Google Tensor GS101 processor
  • 6GB RAM/128GB storage
  • 4410mAh battery
  • 18W charging speed
  • 12.2MP main camera with Sony IMX363 1/2.55" image sensor, 1.4 μm pixel, ƒ/1.7 aperture, 77° field of view
  • 12MP ultrawide camera with Sony IMX386 sensor, 1.25 μm pixels, ƒ/2.2 aperture, 114° field of view
  • 8MP front camera with IMX355 sensor (from Pixel 6)
  • 152.2 x 71.8 x 8.9mm dimensions

Google Pixel 6a design and display

Well, the new Pixel 6a design looks exactly like in the coloring book, taking a page from the Pixel and 6 Pro exterior. Google is attempting something signature in its budget phone A-line, a design that will be immediately recognizable and carry the brand with it like an iPhone notch.

The Pixel 6a cameras and the accompanying paraphernalia like a flash and sensors, are nested in a strip across the back that splits the two-tone Charcoal, Chalk, and Sage body asymmetrically. 

This phone design is not just different for the sake of it. The neatly arranged sensor and lens combos can't easily snap photos of your fingers or butcher the ultrawide perspective as a corner camera island would. Plus, there will be ample strip space for our index finger to press against while we use the phone with one hand.

Second, the "belt" is unique to look at and blends with the back without sticking out like a sore, erm, thumb, even though it IS elevated. Third, it's a design playground, as there can be numerous two- and three-color combos of the Pixel 6a now to keep its looks fresh and us entertained. Kudos to Google and the designers it poached when it bought HTC.

The 6.1" Pixel 6a display may not wow you with its 1080p resolution, but it will certainly be a sight to behold, as we found the panel of its predecessor, the Pixel 5a, to be the best kept secret in the budget phone niche, with near-perfect color calibration, deserving a bonus spot in our best phone displays roundup, so we expect nothing less from the just-announced Google Pixel 6a.

Loading Comments...
FCC OKs Cingular\'s purchase of AT&T Wireless