Phone Comparisons: Google Pixel 5 vs Google Pixel 4a 5G

AH Google Pixel 5 vs Google Pixel 4a 5G comparison
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Google had introduced two new Pixel phones recently, and we’re here to compare those two smartphones. In this article, you’ll be able to read about the Google Pixel 5 vs Google Pixel 4a 5G. These two devices do have some things in common, but there are also some differences worth noting. The Google Pixel 5 is a more premium phone, needless to say, but the Pixel 4a 5G may be a better option for some of you.

The thing is, these two devices ship with the same processor, and even their camera setups are identical. That will be enough for most people to make their decision based on other things, such as the price tag, build materials, displays, and so on. Well, all those aspects here are different. The Google Pixel 4a 5G is the more affordable phone, but it’s also an inferior device to the Pixel 5.

It is worth noting that neither of these two phones comes with high-end specifications, exactly. Google opted not to use a flagship processor in its Pixel phones this year. We knew that was going to happen, but it’s still a bit surprising. That being said, let’s kick off the Google Pixel 5 vs Pixel 4a 5G comparison, shall we.

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Specs

Google Pixel 5Google Pixel 4a 5G
Screen size6-inch fullHD+ OLED display (90Hz)6.2-inch fullHD+ OLED display (60Hz)
Screen resolution2340 x 10802340 x 1080
SoCQualcomm Snapdragon 765GQualcomm Snapdragon 765G
RAM8GB (LPDDR4X)6GB (LPDDR4X)
Storage128GB, non-expandable128GB, non-expandable
Rear cameras12.2MP (f/1.7 aperture, 27mm lens, 1.4um pixel size, dual pixel PDAF, OIS)
16MP (ultra-wide, f/2.2 aperture, 1.0um pixel size, 107-degree FoV)
12.2MP (f/1.7 aperture, 27mm lens, 1.4um pixel size, dual pixel PDAF, OIS)
16MP (ultra-wide, f/2.2 aperture, 1.0um pixel size, 107-degree FoV)
Front cameras8MP (f/2.0 aperture, 24mm lens, 1.12um pixel size)8MP (f/2.0 aperture, 24mm lens, 1.12um pixel size)
Battery4,000mAh, non-removable, 18W fast battery charging, 18W wireless charging, reverse wireless charging3,800mAh, non-removable, 18W fast battery charging
Dimensions144.7 x 70.4 x 8.0 mm153.9 x 74 x 8.2mm
Weight151 grams168 grams
Connectivity5G, LTE, NFC, Bluetooth 5.0, Wi-Fi, USB Type-C5G, LTE, NFC, Bluetooth 5.0, Wi-Fi, USB Type-C
SecurityRear-facing fingerprint scannerRear-facing fingerprint scanner
OSAndroid 11Android 11
Price$699$499
BuyGoogleGoogle

Google Pixel 5 vs Google Pixel 4a 5G: Design

These two phones sure do look similar, but they’re not made from the same materials. The Google Pixel 5 has a more premium design, as Google opted to utilize aluminum, instead of plastic. The vast majority of the phone’s shell is made out of coated aluminum, though a part of it is not, as that’s where the wireless charging coil can communicate with the wireless charger. The Google Pixel 4a 5G, on the other hand, is made out of polycarbonate, just like its sibling, the Pixel 4a.

The Google Pixel 5 is a considerably more compact smartphone than the Pixel 4a 5G, despite the fact its display is only a little bit smaller. The device does have thinner bezels, and it’s considerably shorter and narrower than the Pixel 4a 5G, while it’s also a bit thinner as well. The Pixel 5 should be much easier to use with one hand, that’s for sure. The Pixel 5 is much less slippery than most other aluminum phones, due to the coating that is applied on top of aluminum. The Pixel 4a 5G is also not that slippery thanks to its polycarbonate body.

Both devices have fairly thin bezels, and a display camera hole in the top-left corner. Both devices also include a rear-facing fingerprint scanner, where you’ll notice Google’s logo as well. The same camera setup is included on both devices, and it’s located in the same spot. That camera module sits in the top-left corner on the back, and it houses 12.2-megapixel and 16-megapixel cameras. More on that later. All in all, both phones are well-built, though the Pixel 5 is the more premium of the two.

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Google Pixel 5 vs Google Pixel 4a 5G: Display

Now, when it comes to the display size, these two phones are not too different. The Google Pixel 5 includes a 6-inch fullHD+ OLED display, while the Pixel 4a 5G sports a 6.2-inch fullHD+ OLED panel. The thing is, the Pixel 5 is much more compact thanks to thinner bezels, and it also includes a better display thanks to its refresh rate. The Pixel 5 display offers a 90Hz refresh rate, compared to a 60Hz refresh rate on the Pixel 4a 5G. Both panels can reproduce HDR content.

Both of these displays are flat, and both are protected by the Gorilla Glass. The thing is, the Google Pixel 5 comes with the Gorilla Glass 6, while the Pixel 4a 5G offers Gorilla Glass 3. So, the Pixel 5 has an upper hand in this regard as well. The PPI is a little bit higher on the Pixel 5 due to the fact it’s a smaller display with the same resolution. We’re looking at 432 PPI vs 413 PPI, but that difference is not something you’ll notice.

Both displays are really good, and more than good enough for the vast majority of people. You won’t notice any pixelizations, or anything like that, while the colors are quite vibrant. The displays do get bright enough, and the viewing angles are also quite good. The thing is, there’s not much to complain here. The Pixel 5 does have a higher refresh rate, and it’s a better choice, but if you don’t care about that, or the difference in Gorilla Glass protection, you’ll be good no matter what device you opt for.

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Google Pixel 5 vs Google Pixel 4a 5G: Performance

The performance is pretty much the same on both devices. I had to start this section with that sentence, as you’ll get pretty much the same performance here. That’s not surprising considering that they offer pretty much the same software, while they ship with the same SoC, the Snapdragon 765G. The Google Pixel 5 does have a higher display refresh rate, which does put more strain on the SoC, but it also comes with more RAM. As already mentioned, you won’t really notice the difference in performance.

The Google Pixel 5 is equipped with 8GB of RAM while the Pixel 4a 5G offers 6GB of RAM. Both devices feature LPDDR4X RAM, by the way. Both phones can run pretty much anything you throw at them, as the Snapdragon 765G is quite a capable SoC, which also enables 5G connectivity. Do note that some more graphically intensive games may not perform as well as they would on a high-end chip, though. That’s not something that should bother you, though.

In terms of general day-to-day performance, they’re both quite great. They offer smooth performance, no matter what you do with your phone at the time. You can multitasking really fast with these devices, while they also open apps and games fast as well. Some stutters may creep in from time to time, but that’s about it. The performance will be noticeably better than on the Pixel 4a, that’s for sure.

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Google Pixel 5 vs Google Pixel 4a 5G: Battery

Both the Google Pixel 5 and Pixel 4a 5G offer good battery life. The Google Pixel 5 does include a larger, 4,000mAh battery, though. The Pixel 4a 5G comes with a 3,800mAh battery pack. The difference in battery rating is not that different, but it is worth noting that while the Pixel 4a 5G’s display is larger, it does not offer a high refresh rate. It all evens out in the end, pretty much. Even the Pixel 4a offers good battery life with its 3,140mAh battery pack, and Google did a good job with these two phones as well. It learned its lesson from last year.

With regular use, you should be able to get over 6 hours of screen on time, though that will depend on your usage, cell reception, and so on. The point is, both phones should do good in terms of battery life. Both devices also support fast charging, 18W fast wired charging. The Pixel 5 also supports 18W wireless charging, and reverse wireless charging, by the way. The Pixel 4a 5G does not, unfortunately.

Google Pixel 5 vs Google Pixel 4a 5G: Cameras

The camera performance is identical between these two phones. Not only do they both offer the same number of cameras, but those camera sensors are identical, the same goes for lenses. They’re also fueled by the same SoC, so they’re pretty much the same on the processing side as well. Are these cameras any good, though? Well, yes, mainly thanks to Google’s image processing, as Google has been using the same main sensor on its Pixel phones for years now.

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This time around, however, we do get an ultra-wide camera. That secondary 16-megapixel camera will be extremely useful for a wider field of view, in other words, it’ll do great for landscape shots, or if you just need to fit more stuff into a frame. Both cameras do an excellent job when it comes to detail and sharpness, while the dynamic range is also excellent. They strive in low light, that is something Google has become well-known for. The ultra-wide camera will do a worse job in low light than the main one, but it’s still quite useful, and Night Sight is available for it as well.

Audio

In terms of audio, they both do a good job. Both phones are equipped with stereo speakers, though the Pixel 5's setup is a bit unconventional. The main speaker is placed at the bottom of both phones, while the secondary sits above the display in the case of the Pixel 4a 5G. The Pixel 5's secondary speaker is actually its display. Its display vibrates and creates sound that way.

That vibrating display is far better for calls than it is as a speaker. The Pixel 4a 5G speakers do get quite loud, and the sound is sharp. The distortion is minimal at high volumes, it’s something you won’t even notice, probably. The Pixel 5 is also good in this regard, but you'll get quieter sound out of the device, due to its secondary speaker. The audio is still good, mainly thanks to the primary speaker, but don't expect it to be as good as on the Pixel 4a 5G.

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The Google Pixel 4a 5G comes with a 3.5mm headphone jack, while the Pixel 5 does not. When you do hook up a pair of proper headphones, you’ll get a good sound output, which is well-balanced across the spectrum. Once again, we’ve heard better, but this is far from bad, the sound output is actually really good. Do note that the Pixel 4a 5G does include one microphone less than the Pixel 5, though that won’t matter for most people.