Google Pixel 4a at 31,999 in late 2021: Worth buying now?

Google Pixel 4a at INR 31,999 in late 2021: Should you buy this midrange Android phone from 2020 now? What else can you get for similar prices?
By AMRITANSHU MUKHERJEE
| Updated on Nov 07 2021, 07:00 AM IST
The Pixel 4a is right now the only way to experience Google’s version of Android 12 in India.
The Pixel 4a is right now the only way to experience Google’s version of Android 12 in India. (Jhinuk Sen/HT Tech)

Google Pixel 4a for INR 31,999? Should you buy it now? At a time when the Internet is full of lively Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro reviews, the only Google made smartphone that Indians can buy right now is the Pixel 4a. Google’s last Pixel device for the Indian market continues to carry the baton for the company in a market where phones get obsolete in the matter of a few months. But Google keeps on selling it and that means there must be something so right that Google is confident, right? Or maybe it's just until stocks last?

At INR 31,999, the Pixel 4a has barely changed its price since launch. Yes, you may have gotten it for much less during the Flipkart Big Billion Days sale, but Google hasn’t dropped the standard non-sale price, unlike Apple for its iPhone SE. It seems promising for someone seeking a good camera phone and a clean experience. But is it?

Google Pixel 4a: How does it fare in late 2021?

- The Pixel 4a is right now the only way to experience Google’s version of Android 12 in India. This one has gotten the funky Material You design treatment and will even get next year’s Android 13 update.

- Sadly, the Pixel 4a relies on the old Snapdragon 730G chipset and for a phone costing INR 32,000, that is underpowered. It works good enough for regular smartphone tasks but the Pixel 4a is not an eager phone.

- The 12MP main rear camera is still capable of competing with the best in this class, even if it’s the only camera at the back. The Night Sight mode and Astrophotography are fun features to play with.

- The 5.8-inch 1080p OLED display is among the nicest of its kind, although it lacks a high refresh rate. The uniform narrow bezels impart a more immersive experience.

- The 3140mAh battery may not be good enough for power users and with its slow 18W charging, you could be waiting longer at the sockets.

Alternatives from Apple, Realme and Oppo

iPhone SE 2020
iPhone SE 2020 (Amritanshu Mukherjee / HT tech)

Despite the Pixel experience and nice cameras, the Pixel 4a does not come across as good value anymore, especially when you see what the competition has to offer.

iPhone SE 2020: The Pixel 4a’s natural rival from Apple starts at INR 29,999 for the 64GB variant. The iPhone SE looks old with its fat bezels and a 4.7-inch smaller display, and the battery life is unremarkable. However, it’s built like a tank, gets the latest iOS 15 update (and is likely to get four more), and has equally good cameras.

Realme GT Neo 2: Starting at INR 31,999, the Realme GT Neo 2 blows away the Pixel 4a with its Snapdragon 870-grade performance, 120Hz AMOLED display, bigger battery and much faster 65W fast charging. The only disappointment might be in the cameras where Realme struggles with tuning.

Oppo Reno 6 5G: Costing INR 29,999, the Oppo Reno 6 looks like nothing else in its segment, especially with its iPhone 12-inspired design. It has nice cameras, a faster 65W charging solution, good battery life, and a 5G-enabled Dimensity 900 chipset.

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First Published Date: 07 Nov, 07:00 AM IST
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