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It’s been four years now since Google introduced their first A-Series handsets, the Pixel 3a/3a XL, offering a budget option for those wanting Google’s AI smarts in their phone. The latest to launch is the Pixel 7a, available in Ireland on the Google store for just €509.

Google has upped the ante for the Pixel 7a, offering more in terms of design as well as performance increases over last year’s Pixel 6a.

The spec list for the Pixel 7a shows the Google designed Tensor G2 processor running the show, with 8GB RAM and 128GB of on-board storage with a 6.1” display that runs at 90Hz. For photography fans, there’s a 64MP main camera sensor on the rear, the largest sensor Google has used in an A-Series phone to date and a 13MP ultrawide, with a 13MP selfie camera on the front.

The hardware ticks the right boxes, but the real story of Google’s Pixel line is their software. Running Android 13, the Pixel 7a gets all the features including Clear Calling for clearer phone calls, useful info from the At A Glance widget, Google Assistant with Hold for Me or Call screening and more. You also get all the Google Computational Photography goodness you could want including Real Tone, Photo Unblur, Magic Eraser and more. Does it all work as expected on an ‘entry-level’ Pixel device? Read on to find out.

Design & Build Quality

The Pixel 7a retains the same design of the Pixel line from the last couple of years, with the striking camera bar spanning across the rear. There’s been improvement to the design though, with Google adding in metal volume and power buttons this year for a more premium feel.

Google Pixel 7a | TheEffect.NetThe phone itself is more durable this year. The Pixel 7a retains the IP67 water/dust resistance rating and Gorilla Glass on the display from previous generations, but it now has a mid-frame architecture to further protect the display.

Google Pixel 7a | TheEffect.NetIt is a Pixel A-Series phone, so the rear is made of plastic rather than glass, but it feels silky smooth and in white it’s hard to see any fingerprints. While the review unit I have is ‘Snow’ (White), the Pixel 7a also comes in Charcoal (Black) and Sea (Light blue).

The phone feels compact in the hand but still features a large 6.1” FHD+ resolution display. After some pushback last year, the display on the Pixel 7a now supports ‘Smooth Display’ in settings letting you ramp up the normal 60Hz refresh to 90Hz, though Google does warn that this impacts your battery. The screen looks great at 90Hz with smooth scrolling and games running without frame jumping.

Google has gone with a flat display on the Pixel 7a – my personal preference. The flat display feels better in the hand, and there’s no colour shift at the edge and feels better when swiping. There is some bezel around the screen as well which offers some protection against accidental touches.

The new metal buttons are in the same setup as other Pixel phones with the power button above a volume rocker on the right and they’re very nice and clicky. There’s the SIM card slot on the left and a USB-C port and downward firing speakers on the base.

Google Pixel 7a | TheEffect.NetThe Pixel runs a Tensor G2, the same custom Google designed processor that runs the Pixel 7/Pixel 7 Pro, paired with that there’s 8GB of RAM and 128GB of on-board storage. Overall, the Tensor G2 runs the majority of apps extremely well, with only really graphically intense gaming titles like Wreckfest pushing it a bit too far in terms of frame rate performance.


The camera system is of course a major talking point with Pixel phones. Photos from a Pixel phone are known for their excellent quality and clarity in almost any conditions.

Google Pixel 7a | TheEffect.NetThe hardware on the rear includes a 64MP main sensor with 13MP Ultra-wide, while the front gets a 13MP selfie camera.

A selfie sample shot from the Pixel 7a | TheEffect.Net

The 7a’s Selfie camera offers good edge detection in the ‘Portrait’ mode. | TheEffect.Net

But of course a lot of the ‘goodness’ of the Pixel camera is in the computational photography algorithms that Google has included like Photo Unblur, Real Tone, and Magic Eraser. The low-light Night Sight feature is also back, and twice as fast as it was on the Pixel 6a and it’s just as magic as the first time I used it.

A 'Night Sight' sample photo from the Pixel 7a | TheEffect.Net

A ‘Night Sight’ sample photo from the Pixel 7a – this scene was basically pitch black when taking this photo | TheEffect.Net

The main sensor offers great shots, as does the ultra-wide sensor however the main sensor offers slightly better shots with greater clarity and details captured thanks to the higher MP sensor. Both are good though, so don’t worry.

An ultra-wide sample shot from the Pixel 7a | TheEffect.Net

An ultra-wide sample shot from the Pixel 7a | TheEffect.Net

A wide angle sample shot from the Pixel 7a | TheEffect.Net

While the Pixel 7a doesn’t have an optical zoom, it does have ‘Super Res Zoom’, another feature Google implemented in the camera to improve shots using digital zoom. It’s a decent zoom and while obviously not quite up with there with what the Pixel 7 Pro is capable of with its 5x optical lens, it’s still quite good given what it’s working with.

An 8x 'Super Res Zoom' shot from the Pixel 7a | TheEffect.Net

An 8x ‘Super Res Zoom’ shot from the Pixel 7a | TheEffect.Net

Video hasn’t seen any improvements since the Pixel 7/7 Pro but on this latest A-Series phone, all the camera sensors can now record in 4K/30FPS, and you can of course record in 4K/60FPS on the main sensor as well.

Battery Life

The Pixel 7a comes with a 4385mAh battery, it supports 30W charging through the Pixel Wired charger (not included in the box, unsurprisingly.) The Pixel 7a is also the first A-Series Pixel to support wireless charging though at 7.5W on a Pixel Stand or 5W on a Qi certified device.

Overall, battery life on the Pixel 7a isn’t amazing unfortunately. Maybe there are some software updates that need to land to really optimise things but most days, after about 8 hours, it was asking for Battery Saver or Extreme Battery Saver. I was using the phone as I have been using my Pixel 7 Pro and the difference was noticeable.

Charging on the 30W charger is fast though which is a pleasant experience so you can fill it back up at a decent pace when things do come down to the wire.


The Pixel 7a offers an impressive mid-range experience in terms of power, camera quality and design, however the battery life, if you aren’t often near a charger, is not the best it can be.

The rest of the Pixel experience is definitely here in the Pixel 7a, with all the Google smarts you could want built-in. The camera is excellent and the Tensor G2 offers more little features that help to make a Pixel great.

Google has pulled off some impressive software updates previously, and the monthly Pixel drop updates could help the battery life. With a better battery life the Pixel 7a, will be a hard phone to pass by.

Google Pixel 7a | TheEffect.NetGoogle Pixel 7a Pricing & Availability

The Pixel 7a is available now directly from the Google’s online Irish store for €509 in 4 different colour options with the ‘pink/orange’ Coral colour a store exclusive.

REVIEW: Google Pixel 7a - Almost There
  • Design & Build Quality
  • Cameras
  • Battery Life


The Pixel 7a offers an impressive mid-range experience in terms of power, camera quality and design, however the battery life, if you aren’t often near a charger, is not the best it can be.

John Reilly

John is Founder and Editor-in-Chief of TheEffect.Net. His favourite gaming series is Uncharted and his favourite film is Interstellar. He is also known to quote 'Father Ted' and Keith Lemon more than is normal.