Phone Comparisons: Samsung Galaxy Note 20 vs Google Pixel 4a 5G

AH Samsung Galaxy Note 20 vs Google Pixel 4a 5G comparison
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Comparing the Samsung Galaxy Note 20 vs Google Pixel 4a 5G may seem odd considering the differences. There’s not only a huge price gap between the two devices, but the two phones are aimed at completely different sets of people. The Galaxy Note 20, on one hand, is a flagship-grade smartphone, while the Google Pixel 4a 5G is a mid-ranger. That being said, some of you are probably considering both as your next smartphone purchase, and a direct comparison may surprise you.

The main question that pops up when a smartphone comparison turns out, is the more expensive unit worth the price, or should I get the cheaper one? Well, that is a question that often doesn’t have a simple answer. Different people need different things, which is why we always compare phones across a number of categories. We’ll do the same thing here, starting with their spec sheets. We’ll also touch on their designs, displays, performance, and so on. That being said, let’s kick off the Samsung Galaxy Note 20 vs Google Pixel 4a 5G comparison, shall we?

Specs

Samsung Galaxy Note 20Google Pixel 4a 5G
Screen size6.7-inch fullHD+ display (Dynamic OLED, 60Hz)6.2-inch fullHD+ OLED display (60Hz)
Screen resolution2400 x 10802340 x 1080
SoCQualcomm Snapdragon 865 / Exynos 990Qualcomm Snapdragon 765G
RAM8GB6GB (LPDDR4X)
Storage128GB; Non-Expandable128GB, non-expandable
Rear cameras12MP (f/1.8 aperture, 1.8um pixel size, 79-degree FoV)
64MP (telephoto, 76-degree FoV, 0.8um pixel size, 3x optical zoom)
12MP (ultrawide, 1.4um pixel size, f/2.2 aperture, 120-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 cameras10MP (f/2.2 aperture, 26mm wide-angle lens, 1.22um pixel size)8MP (f/2.0 aperture, 24mm lens, 1.12um pixel size)
Battery4,300mAh, Non-Removable, 25W Fast Battery Charging (USB-PD 2.0), 15W Qi wireless charging, 4.5W reverse wireless charging3,800mAh, non-removable, 18W fast battery charging
Dimensions161.6 x 75.2 x 8.3mm153.9 x 74 x 8.2mm
Weight192g (Sub6), 194g (mmWave168 grams
Connectivity5G, LTE, NFC, Bluetooth 5.1, Wi-Fi, USB Type-C5G, LTE, NFC, Bluetooth 5.0, Wi-Fi, USB Type-C
SecurityIn-display fingerprint scanner (ultrasonic)Rear-facing fingerprint scanner
OSAndroid 10
One UI
Android 11
Price$999.99$499
BuySamsungGoogle

Samsung Galaxy Note 20 vs Google Pixel 4a 5G: Design

When it comes to the design, these two phones are quite different. They not only look different, but use different build material as well, to a degree. Both phones come with a plastic backplate, but the Pixel 4a 5G also has a plastic frame. The Galaxy Note 20, on the other hand, has a frame made out of metal. Bezels are really thin on both phones, while the display camera hole is included on both, but in different places.

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Google Pixel 4a 5G AM AH 4 1

The camera module on the back sits in the same place on both phones, but houses completely different camera setups. The Galaxy Note 20 camera module is much larger as it hosts three times as many cameras. Both phones offer flat displays. The Galaxy Note 20 is considerably larger than the Pixel 4a 5G, which is to be expected, as it has a larger display. The Galaxy Note 20 is also the heavier of the two.

When it comes to the in-hand feel, that part is different as well. Not only because of their size, but the fact they’re built differently. Both are quite slippery, though, despite the fact neither has glass on the back. Those plastic plates are not exactly grippy. The Google Pixel 4a 5G also has a fingerprint scanner on the back. The one on the Galaxy Note 20 is not visible, as it’s placed under the display.

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Samsung Galaxy Note 20 vs Google Pixel 4a 5G: Display

There’s a huge size difference when it comes to these two displays. The Samsung Galaxy Note 20 features a 6.7-inch fullHD+ (2400 x 1080) Super AMOLED Plus panel. The Google Pixel 4a 5G comes with a 6.2-inch fullHD+ (2340 x 1080) OLED display. Both of these displays are flat, and both support HDR content. The Galaxy Note 20 is the only one that supports HDR10+, though. It also offers better display protection with the Gorilla Glass 5, while the Google Pixel 4a 5G comes with the Gorilla Glass 3.

It is also worth noting that both phones offer 60Hz displays, neither one has a high refresh rate panel. The Galaxy Note 20 offers a slightly higher display aspect ratio, 20:9 vs 19.5:9. Both of these displays have display camera holes in them, though they sit in different places on each panel.

So, what’s the quality like? Well, truth be said, the Galaxy Note 20’s panel looks better to the eye. The colors seem to be punchier while the content ends up looking better overall. That being said, the Google Pixel 4a 5G display is also quite good. They’re equally sharp, almost, and both offer those deep blacks. So, even though the Galaxy Note 20’s display is technically better, the vast majority of people won’t notice the difference, nor will they care, as both displays are really good.

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Samsung Galaxy Note 20 vs Google Pixel 4a 5G: Performance

In terms of hardware, the Samsung Galaxy Note 20 is the more powerful device, no question. It comes with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 865+ SoC, which is the company’s flagship processor at the moment. It also packs in more RAM than the Pixel 4a 5G, and more internal storage (that is also faster). Does that reflect in real-life performance, though? Well, yes, but only if you really look for it.

What do I mean by that? Well, if you have both phones side-by-side, and you try to load a game or something, the Galaxy Note 20 will do it faster. It will also perform better when it comes to graphically-intensive games. In general usage, though, both phones are excellent. The Snapdragon 765G that is included inside the Pixel 4a is a really, really good processor. That is one of Qualcomm’s best mid-range chips.

Both phones are extremely fast when it comes to multitasking and stuff you’ll do on a daily basis. If you’re into gaming, and plan to do lots of it on the device, the Galaxy Note 20 may be a better choice. Not only because of its processor and RAM, but also because it has a considerably larger display. The Pixel 4a 5G is more than enough for the vast majority of people, though.

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Samsung Galaxy Note 20 vs Google Pixel 4a 5G: Battery

In the battery life department, well, both of these phones are good. The Galaxy Note 20 comes with a larger, 4,300mAh battery. That handset does include a larger display, and a processor that is less battery friendly than the one in the Google Pixel 4a 5G. The Pixel 4a 5G features a 3,885mAh battery. When it comes to battery life, well, both phones are really good, actually. They’re not the best we’ve seen thus far, but they’ll do the trick for most people.

Both of these phones are capable of reaching 7 hours of screen on time, well, presuming you’re not playing a lot of games, or pushing them with other processor-intensive tasks. Usage varies from one person to the other, so all we can do is share our numbers. The point is, both phones should be more than enough to serve you until the end of the day, even if you push the phone more than a regular user would.

When it comes time to charge them, the Galaxy Note 20 offers more. It comes with 25W fast wired charging, compared to 18W charging on the Pixel 4a 5G. The Galaxy Note 20 also offers 15W fast wireless charging, and reverse wireless charging. The Pixel 4a 5G is limited to wired charging only.

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Samsung Galaxy Note 20 vs Google Pixel 4a 5G: Cameras

Cameras on Google Pixel devices have been considered to be amongst the best smartphone cameras out there for years now. Well, Google has been using the same sensor for years now, and even though it’s showing its age, it’s still great. Well, Google’s algorithms are doing most of the heavy lifting, but shots that you can get using this phone are great. That goes for all lighting conditions, and it even comes with an ultra-wide camera that is supported by Google’s software.

Google Pixel 4a 5G AM AH 25
Google Pixel 4a 5G – Camera

The dynamic range on those shots is excellent, while the Night Sight mode does wonders in low light. That being said, the Galaxy Note 20 also offers a great set of cameras. Samsung improved its previous offerings by optimizing its image processing, so that the images don’t look fake as they did before. They actually look really good, and are well-balanced. We do prefer images coming from the Pixel 4a 5G, but the Galaxy Note 20 is not far behind. It can also do a really good job in low light, and its ultra-wide camera is nothing to scoff at.

Audio

The Google Pixel 4a 5G does come with a headphone jack, so let’s get that out of the way. The Galaxy Note 20 does not. So, if you really need a headphone jack, the Pixel 4a 5G is the way to go. Both phones do include stereo speakers, though, and those speakers are quite good. We’d say that the speakers on the Galaxy Note 20 are a bit better, though. They’re a bit louder, and the sound coming from them seems to be sharper and deeper. Not many people will have complaints when it comes to the Pixel 4a 5G speakers, though.

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Now, if you plug in a good set of headphones into these two phones, or connect them via Bluetooth, you can get really good sound output. You won’t notice much difference in the output, as the two phones are kind of similar in that regard. As long as you don’t expect miracles, you’ll enjoy sound output here.