In this article, we’ll be comparing the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE vs Google Pixel 4a 5G. Both of these phones are quite capable, but they’re considerably different in comparison. The Galaxy S20 FE is categorized as a budget flagship, in a way, while the Pixel 4a 5G is essentially a mid-range phone offered by Google. The thing is, the Pixel 4a 5G comes with the same SoC as the Pixel 5.
This comparison may be interesting to some of you. The Pixel 4a 5G is considerably more affordable than the Galaxy S20 FE, and it’s technically less powerful, but it has its advantages. Some of you may be looking to save some cash, and get the Pixel 4a 5G instead of what Samsung has to offer. Well, we’re here to try and help you decide. We’ll provide you with a bunch of information, and it’s up to you to decide what phone to get. We’ll start by listing their specifications, and then move to a number of other categories.
|Samsung Galaxy S20 FE||Google Pixel 4a 5G|
|Screen size||6.5-inch fullHD+ Super AMOLED display (120Hz)||6.2-inch fullHD+ OLED display (60Hz)|
|Screen resolution||2400 x 1080||2340 x 1080|
|SoC||Qualcomm Snapdragon 865||Qualcomm Snapdragon 765G|
|RAM||6GB (LPDDR5)||6GB (LPDDR4X)|
|Storage||128GB; Non-Expandable||128GB, non-expandable|
|Rear cameras||12MP (f/1.8 aperture, 1.8um pixel size, Dual Pixel AF, OIS)|
12MP (f/2.2 aperture, 123-degree FoV, 1.12um pixel size, ultrawide)
8MP (f/2.4 aperture, 1.0um pixel size, telephoto, 3x optical zoom, OIS)
|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 cameras||32MP (f/2.2 aperture, 80-degree FoV, 0.8um pixel size)||8MP (f/2.0 aperture, 24mm lens, 1.12um pixel size)|
|Battery||4,500mAh, non-removable, 25W wired charging, 15W wireless charging, Wireless PowerShare||3,800mAh, non-removable, 18W fast battery charging|
|Dimensions||159.8 x 74.5 x 8.4mm||153.9 x 74 x 8.2mm|
|Weight||190 grams||168 grams|
|Connectivity||5G, LTE, NFC, Bluetooth 5.0, Wi-Fi, USB Type-C||5G, LTE, NFC, Bluetooth 5.0, Wi-Fi, USB Type-C|
|Security||In-display fingerprint scanner (optical)||Rear-facing fingerprint scanner|
One UI 2.5
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE vs Google Pixel 4a 5G: Design
These two phones are considerably different in the design department. They both offer flat displays, and thin bezels, that’s true. They also feature display camera holes, but they’re not included in the same spot. The Galaxy S20 FE comes with a frame made out of metal, with a plastic backplate, or as Samsung calls it, ‘glasstic’. The Pixel 4a 5G sports a plastic unibody design, though it feels really solid in the hand.
In fact, both phones feel really good in the hand. The Pixel 4a 5G has that plastic build and is proud of it, while the plastic on the back of the Galaxy S20 FE could fool some people to think it’s glass. Plastic does have its advantages, so we don’t really see that as a bad thing here. Their rear camera setups are included in the same spot, but are considerably different, and look different as well.
The Pixel 4a 5G has a physical fingerprint scanner on the back, while the Galaxy S20 FE utilizes an in-display fingerprint scanner. The Galaxy S20 FE is taller, wider, and thicker than the Pixel 4a 5G. It’s also around 20 grams heavier. That’s not surprising, as the phone does come with a larger display as well. All in all, both phones do feel great in the hand, and it’s all a matter of preference, as they do offer different designs.
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE vs Google Pixel 4a 5G: Display
When it comes to displays, well, the Galaxy S20 FE does have an advantage. Why? Well, it does come with a more modern display which offers a high refresh rate. The phone features a 6.5-inch fullHD+ (2400 x 1080) Super AMOLED display with a 120Hz refresh rate. The phone does not offer an adaptive refresh rate, as some other phones with newer panels do, but that’s not something that should bother you, at all. This panel also supports HDR10+ content.
The Google Pixel 4a 5G’s display is inferior, that’s for sure. It’s not bad, though, don’t get us wrong. The Pixel 4a 5G features a 6.2-inch fullHD+ (2340 x 1080) OLED panel with a 60Hz refresh rate. So, its refresh rate is considerably lower, but the vast majority of people probably won’t care much. This display is protected by the Gorilla Glass 3, while we still don’t know the exact display protection Samsung used on the Galaxy S20 FE. We’re guessing it’s newer, though.
In regards to display quality in real-life, well, both panels are really good. We have to say that the Galaxy S20 FE’s does look a bit better in real life, and does get brighter as well. Both displays do offer really good viewing angles, and really nice, punchy colors. Blacks are as deep as you’d expect them to be on OLED panels. All in all, both displays are really good, but the Galaxy S20 FE’s panel does have an advantage.
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE vs Google Pixel 4a 5G: Performance
When it comes to performance, there’s nothing to worry about here. The Galaxy S20 FE is fueled by the Snapdragon 865 SoC, which was Qualcomm’s flagship processor until the end of last year. The Google Pixel 4a 5G comes with an inferior Snapdragon 765G SoC, but that’s not something that should bother you. Both of these SoCs are more than powerful enough for most people, while the rest of the specs inside of these phones are as well.
Both devices offer 6 GB of RAM, though the Galaxy S20 FE comes with faster / newer flash storage. Software builds on both phones are well-optimized. The Pixel 4a 5G comes with Google’s Android 11 out of the box, while the Galaxy S20 FE is upgradable to Android 11, and it has Samsung’s skin on top of it. There are quite a few software differences, but the point is, both builds are really well-optimized, which results in a great performance.
You can’t go wrong no matter which of the two phones you get for the performance side of things. We didn’t see much difference when it comes to usage, other than the fact the Galaxy S20 FE loads games faster. If you’re getting one of these two phones for gaming, the Galaxy S20 FE is probably the better choice, mainly due to its hardware. If not, both phones are a good choice.
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE vs Google Pixel 4a 5G: Battery
In terms of battery life, there’s not much to worry about here. Both of these phones do provide really good battery life. The Galaxy S20 FE comes with a 4,500mAh battery, while the Google Pixel 4a 5G includes a 3,885mAh battery. The Pixel 4a 5G’s battery is smaller, that’s true, but its display is not only smaller, but it comes with a considerably lower refresh rate. Therefore, the Pixel 4a 5G requires less juice on the hardware side of things.
How good is the battery life? Well, both of these phones were able to provide us with around 6 hours of screen on time. Sometimes it was closer to 7 hours of screen-on-time, depending on what we’re doing with them. Your mileage will vary, of course, and you can expect considerably lower numbers if you’re pushing their SoCs hard with games, and other intensive processing. The point is, the battery life on these two phones should be sufficient for the vast majority of people.
If you do find yourself in a situation where you need to charge them during the day, both phones do support fast charging. The Galaxy S20 FE does offer more in that regard, though. The phone comes with 25W wired charging, along with 15W wireless charging, and 5W reverse wireless charging aka Wireless PowerShare. The Pixel 4a 5G, on the other hand, supports 18W fast wired charging, but no wireless charging or reverse wireless charging.
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE vs Google Pixel 4a 5G: Cameras
In regards to cameras, both phones have a lot to offer. The Galaxy S20 FE comes with the standard triple camera setup, with wide, ultra-wide, and telephoto cameras. The Pixel 4a 5G lacks the telephoto camera, but has the other two. The sensors used here are considerably different, while the approach to processing is also different. The Pixel 4a 5G’s main sensor is quite old, but it’s still quite powerful.
The Pixel 4a 5G actually uses the same sensor as all Pixel smartphones used since the Pixel 2, including the Pixel 5. That camera, thanks to Google’s processing, can still provide excellent images, even though it’s overdue for an upgrade. Google’s software magic is also applicable to the ultra-wide camera. The Galaxy S20 FE tends to be a bit heavy on processing on some shots, but other than that, we don’t have major complaints.
Both phones handle HDR situations really well, and provide images with plenty of flare, and well-balanced, punchy colors. The Pixel 4a 5G may have a slight advantage in low light, but the Galaxy S20 FE is really good in such situations as well. The Galaxy S20 FE does have an advantage in the video department, though. All in all, both phones are really good in terms of providing good camera shots.
Neither of these two phones will amaze audiophiles, but both provide a really good audio experience. They both come with a set of stereo speakers, while the Pixel 4a 5G even has a 3.5mm headphone jack. Speakers on both phones are really good, and the ones on the Galaxy S20 FE are even tuned by AKG. Both sets of speakers get pretty loud, and the distortion is almost not noticeable. The sound is also quite crisp.
The Pixel 4a 5G will excite you more if you use wired headphones still, though you can always use a dongle with the Galaxy S20 FE. With a good pair of headphones, regardless of how you connect them, both phones can provide a well-balanced sound. Lows, mids, and highs are well-balanced, so nothing will feel out of place while you’re listening, which is always a good thing.