We are delighted to be able to bring you a first look at the all new Google Pixel 3a, Today the device goes on sale via the Google store and is an exclusive to Vodafone Ireland. The new Pixel devices weigh in much less than their older brothers the 3 and 3XL but what does it offer in return for the price difference… Speaking of the price the 3a will cost from free on vodafone later this month and will set you back €349.99 on PAYG. The 3 XL however also come from free up to €149.99 on billpay and will cost you €449.99 on PAYG. €399 for the 5.6-inch display and €479 for the 6-inch model on the Google Store (unlocked and SIM-free) There is going to be people complaining here on the price due to the build quality (polycarbonate) here but you are getting the camera experience here however a phone does just not sell by its camera prowess it’s what else it can do.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Today we unbox the Pixel 3a and go through the UI and check out the features on offer, Off the bat you have squeeze to activate your google assistant which is a handy feature to have and is something I find handy, There is 4K recording at 30fps and video stabilisation which is excellent and the big feature of last year “night sight” is also present..

On first picking up the device you will notice how light it is to start with,being made from plastic this is a different build quality than before but the device feels good in the hand and easy for one handed use. The buttons are placed well on the device alongside the fingerprint sensor which is a good start. First thing to notice too is the notch has been ditched with having the biggest notch on a phone last year this will be welcome from most but you do get use to having the notch there over time but I think now we can say goodbye to the notch with how things are now moving forward with the holepunch replacing it.

We are also getting stock Android here for a smooth experience with no bloatware and this is something that should be the norm now to get a clean experience on your devices UI many phones now do come with such but there is alot of catch up to do here in this area be it having a light skin on top on Android 9 most would prefer no skin and a fluid experience.

The camera here is superb yet again with just the one lens on the back and I prefer this over the race to have to most cameras as its getting a bit ridiculous looking now with manufacturers racing to have the most lenses on the back,this also keeps the rear of the device clean however there is a slight hump on the camera but not a huge issue to complain about, You can fix that with a case anyway but we have yet to see one for it.They are going to be available, There will be third party cases for it and we will have some in regardless as we do with all our phones.

So for now what are my first thoughts. You cant review a phone fairly in 2/3 days so from the testing I have thrown at it the last few days I am impressed,much of what we seen in the previous iterations has returned but now the device costs less. The build quality is a concern not just for me but for many others with the plastic housing but it delivers elsewhere. Polycarbonate is tough and most of us sport a case so we are looking at a cost to performance ratio Being a power user I have thrown pretty much everything I could at it as I would do any phone and it has handled with ease but over time we shall see how that changes. You can see for yourself the image and video samples which what most people want these days and I am impressed on this front..

Multitasking is another key feature on a smartphone and this again was done with ease but I have yet to load my full array of apps that I use which is alot because if what I do and because of what I am testing and currently using for review purposes and then we can assess how it holds down long term and the odd game or two will be thrown in but this is not a phone directed at gamers but will most likely hold down high end games well.. And for those who like media with stereo sound… Yes it comes with stereo speakers albeit one of the bottom firing speaker grilles is a dud the sound quality is excellent. The 12MP and 8MP cameras perform well so far given its got a lower chipset than last year the snapdragon 670 it has been good so far.. The 3000Mah battery will take some more testing to get an accurate daily use roundup.But you get 18w fast charging and no wireless charging.


High-end features: camera, Google Assistant, battery life and security

Google Pixel 3a delivers what you’d expect from a premium device. Starting with the award-winning camera, Pixel 3a lets you take stunning photos using Google’s HDR+ technology with features like Portrait Mode, Super Res Zoom, and Night Sight to capture clear shots in low light. Google Photos is built in, so you can save all your high-quality photos and videos with free, unlimited storage. And it comes with an 18-watt charger so you get up to seven hours of battery life on a 15-minute charge and up to 30 hours on a full charge.

Squeeze Pixel 3a for the Google Assistant to send texts, get directions and set reminders—simply using your voice,The Pixel 3a is protected against new threats, by providing three years of security and operating system updates. In a recent industry report, Pixel was rated the highest for built-in security among all smartphones. It also comes with the custom-built Titan M chip to help protect your most sensitive data.

New features at a more accessible price

Pixel makes it easy to use Google apps like YouTube, Google Photos and Gmail. And you’ll get access to new features first. For example Pixel 3a and the entire Pixel portfolio will get a preview of AR in Google Maps—the next time you’re getting around town, you can see walking directions overlaid on the world itself, rather than looking at a blue dot on a map.

This helps you know precisely where you are, and exactly which way to start walking (in areas covered on Street View where there’s a good data connection and good lighting). Similarly, Time Lapse is coming soon to Google Pixel 3a too, so you can capture an entire sunset in just a few seconds of video—great for posting on social media or messaging to your friends. With much more exciting developments in the pipeline, Pixel owners are front of the queue to test out these great new features.

Device Slideshow

Easy Availability & Support

Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL will be available via Vodafone later this month, or directly via the Irish Google Store tonight. If you’re new to Pixel, you can transfer photos, music and media quickly with the included Quick Switch Adapter. If you need a little extra help, 24/7 support from Google is just a tap away in the tips and support link in the settings menu. You can even share your screen for guided assistance.

By Jim O Brien/CEO

CEO and expert in transport and Mobile tech. A fan 20 years, mobile consultant, Nokia Mobile expert, Former Nokia/Microsoft VIP,Multiple forum tech supporter with worldwide top ranking,Working in the background on mobile technology, Weekly radio show, Featured on the RTE consumer show, Cavan TV and on TRT WORLD. Award winning Technology reviewer and blogger. Security and logisitcs Professional.