iPhone 15 Pro vs Google Pixel 7: blue pill or red pill?

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iPhone 15 Pro vs Google Pixel 7

Intro


In the battle of compact phones, you have two extremes: one is the Apple iPhone 15 Pro with its fancy new materials and $1,000 price, and then you have the Google Pixel 7 which you can often find on sale for just around $500. Basically, you can buy two Pixel 7 phones for the price of one iPhone 15 Pro, and still have some change left!

Yet, despite the massive price difference, these phones are surprisingly similar: both are relatively compact, both have roughly one day battery life, and both have impressive camera systems.

But when you dive deeper, you can see Apple offers a few improvements that might justify the added cost: a higher quality screen, a groundbreaking A17 Pro chip, and then lots of tweaks that really add up, a brand new USB-C port, a first on an iPhone, as well as a brand new Action Button.

The Pixel 7, on the other hand, runs smoothly with the Google-made Tensor G2 chip, the image quality can definitely hold up against the iPhone or even surpass it, and of course... that price! Let's see go into the details and see which one will be a better fit for you.

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iPhone 15 Pro vs Google Pixel 7 differences:
  • Pixel 7 is slightly larger
  • Pixel has 6.3" scren vs 6.1" on iPhone
  • Pixel runs Android, iPhone -- iOS
  • iPhone has the faster A17 Pro chip
  • Both have 8GB RAM
  • iPhone has a dedicated zoom camera, the Pixel - not
  • iPhone has longer battery life
  • Similarly slow charging speeds

Table of Contents:

Design and Size

Both are compact, but they have a different style

Both these phones pass for a compact phone these days, and compared to bigger phones like the iPhone Pro Max and Galaxy Ultra series, the difference is clearly noticeable.

The two, however, have a different approach to design styling. The iPhone features flat sides, while the Pixel features a tapered back. Is one better than the other? Not really, it's all a matter of personal preference.

In terms of materials, the Pixel follows the common glass and aluminum formula, while the iPhone 15 Pro uses a fancy titanium frame, a new material which is more resistant to scratches and will not catch fingerprints as easily as the stainless steel material used on previous iPhones. Also, titanium weighs less, so the iPhone 15 Pro also weighs nearly 8% less than its predecessor.

Both phones come with the same IP68 water and dust protection rating, in case you were wondering, and neither one has a 3.5mm headphone jack.

Big news for the iPhone is the port: the 15 Pro comes with USB-C, same as Android phones and most electronics for that matter. To that we say: at last! Carrying just one cable instead of multiple different ones on a trip is a win in our books.

Display Differences



The iPhone 15 Pro features a 6.1-inch screen, while the Pixel 7 flaunts a slightly larger 6.3-inch display.

Both are OLED with deep blacks and gorgeous colors. However, the iPhone has the advantage of running at 120Hz, while the Pixel maxes out at 90Hz. This makes for slightly smoother scrolling on the iPhone, but we would not say that the difference is all that big. The iPhone also has much slimmer bezels, for a more modern look.


Overall, expect a slightly better screen in the iPhone, slightly better color balance, higher peak brightness for easier outdoor use, and so on.

On the biometrics front, you have Face ID on the iPhone compared to an optical fingerprint scanner on the Pixel 7. The Pixel also supports face recognition but it's not the same 3D secure kind that Apple uses, but one based on image recognition and it cannot be used for mission-critical applications like payments for once.

Performance and Software

Apple takes the cake


Under the hood, the iPhone shines with its brand new Apple A17 Pro chip, the world's first processor built using cutting edge 3nm technology.

The Pixel 7, on the other hand, is powered by the Google-made Tensor G2 chip, which is not nearly as powerful in benchmarks, but the company says is optimized for AI tasks.

Still, if you care about performance and things like gaming, the iPhone 15 Pro is clearly shaping to be the way more powerful of the two. The new GPU is particularly powerful and gamers will really appreciate it.

Geekbench 6
SingleHigher is better
Apple iPhone 15 Pro2920
Google Pixel 71452
Geekbench 6
MultiHigher is better
Apple iPhone 15 Pro7447
Google Pixel 73318

Both phones come with 8GB of LPDDR5 RAM, so no differences on that front.

In terms of software, the iPhone runs iOS, the Pixel runs Android. You probably already know your preferred operating system, but just in simple terms, iOS is characterized by a bit less customization options, but instead offers cool features like lock screen widgets and is a gateway to a much bigger ecosystem of devices starting with the Apple Watch, AirPods, AirDrop and so on.

The Pixel on its part has a very hip looking interface with more customization possibilities and power user features like split screen multitasking that are still missing on iOS.

Recent Android updates, however, have not introduced too many new features, while Apple has brought a steady stream of changes in the past couple of years.

There is a lot new with iOS 17, but the big changes come to the Phone, Messages and FaceTime apps. Oh, and autocorrect on iPhones is also finally getting better!

The Phone app will now support Contact Posters which is basically a picture you set for yourself and others see full-screen when they receive a call from you. It’s an iOS only thing. You also have NameDrop, a new way to exchange contacts between iPhones by just bringing them next to each other. In the Messages app, you now have stickers and live stickers, which you can create from Live Photos for that added personal touch to your chats.

Other new features in iOS 17 include Standby Mode, which turns your iPhone into a mini home hub while it’s charging, new interactive widgets, mood tracking in the Health app, a brand new journaling app, and more.

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Finally, connectivity looks very similar on both with full LTE and 5G band support, but the iPhone takes things further with Emergency SOS via satellite, a feature that could be a life-saver and that is missing on the Pixel.

Oh, and one more thing, the iPhone 15 Pro is eSIM only in the US, while you can still have the choice between a physical SIM card or eSIM if you opt for the Pixel.

Camera

iPhone has a zoom camera, the Pixel does not


The camera is another area where you can kind of tell that the cheaper Pixel makes some compromises.

For starters, you only have two cameras on the back of the Pixel 7, a main and an ultra-wide one, while on the iPhone 15 Pro you have an additional 3X telephoto zoom lens. This means the iPhone has the upper hand with zoom quality.

The iPhone has other tricks too. It uses sensor crop so you get lossless quality now at 1.2X (28mm), 1.5X (35mm) and 2X (48mm), so basically you have three new zoom lenses! That is a lot of variety!

The iPhone also now defaults to 24-megapixel photos with a lot more detail than any 12-megapixel camera, including the one on the Pixel.

Main Camera



Ultra-wide



Portrait Mode



Low-Light / Night Photo Quality




Selfies



Video Quality


Video Thumbnail

On the video front, both support 4K recordings, but again, expect more details on the quality soon.

Audio Quality and Haptics


Both phones rock a dual speaker setup with the main loudspeaker located at the bottom and you've got a secondary speaker in the earpiece.

It's still too early to tell much about the quality, so we will be updating you on that in the future.

As for haptics, the iPhone 15 Pro has the upper hand with the very capable Taptic Engine, but the Pixel also has a pretty good vibration motor.

Battery Life and Charging

iPhone 15 Pro comes out on top


So what about battery life?

The Pixel 7 comes with a 4,355mAh battery, which is a good size. The iPhone 15 Pro battery size is smaller at 3,274 mAh, but thanks to the more efficient iOS it actually lasts a bit longer than the Pixel.

We will be testing both phones using our three independent battery tests to give you the full picture, so stay tuned for those battery comparisons to appear here in late September.

As for charging, first, you get no charger in the box with either phone.

And second, the Pixel 7 might be the only flagship with actually slower charging than the iPhone at its mere 20W rate. The iPhone 15 Pro is not much faster, though, at just 23 watt speeds.

Both phones also support wireless charging, but the iPhone has the cool MagSafe tech at 15W, while the Pixel 7 lacks the magnets and supports slower 12W wireless charging speeds.

Specs Comparison


And here is an overview of the specs of the iPhone 15 Pro and Google's Pixel 7:


You can find a lot more detail in our iPhone 15 Pro vs Pixel 7 specs comparison here.

Summary and Final Verdict



At the end of the day, the iPhone 15 Pro definitely seems like the more technically advanced phone than the Pixel, but that is expected for a phone that costs nearly twice as much.

The real question is whether those differences actually make it worth buying?

To this, the answer lies mostly in you wanting to be a part of the Apple ecosystem. Do you want to use an Apple Watch? Do you have a Macbook, AirPods, AirTags and so on?

The other thing is just the little quality of life upgrades on the iPhone with things like the Dynamic Island, the new Action button, as well as a few other small tweaks and tricks. And all those new camera options do make a difference. 

Overall, the Pixel is clearly a great deal, but if you are more picky about photo and video quality, as well as the ecosystem and long software support, the iPhone still offers plenty of value.

So, which one would YOU go for and what are your reasons to pick it over the other?

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