(Pocket-lint) - Google announced the Pixel 5a 5G in August 2021, though that's not the last we will hear from the company before the year is out, with the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro both arriving in the fall.
With the Google Pixel 5a 5G now confirmed - albeit only available in select regions - and some details of the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro also confirmed by Google, we've compared the devices against each other to see what the differences could be.
We've also included the rumoured specifications for the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro where official specs haven't been detailed to help offer a broader picture of how the 2021 Pixels stack up against each other.
- Pixel 5a 5G: 154.9 x 73.7 x 7.6mm, 185g
- Pixel 6: 158.6 x 74.8 x 8.9mm, 11.8mm with bump
- Pixel 6 Pro: 163.9 x 75.8 x 8.9mm, 11.5mm with bump
The Google Pixel 5a 5G features a similar design to the Pixel 5 and its predecessor - the Pixel 4a 5G. It has a punch hole camera in the top left corner of its flat display, while a square camera housing is positioned in the top left corner of the rear.
There is a physical fingerprint sensor in the middle on the back of the phone, it comes in one colour option - Mostly Black - and it features a coloured power button. The Pixel 5a 5G offers IP67 water and dust resistance and it has a metal unibody.
The Pixel 6 and 6 Pro meanwhile, will offer a complete redesign compared to Pixel devices that have gone before them, with a camera housing that spans the width of the back of the device. The front displays are expected to have a centralised punch hole camera at the top.
They are also both expected to be IP68 water and dust resistant and sport an under-display fingerprint sensor. The Pixel 6 will come in a matte finish, while the Pixel 6 Pro is expected to come in a polished aluminium finish and different colour options will be available.
If rumoured measurements for the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro are accurate, the Pixel 5a 5G will the smallest of the three devices being compared here.
- Pixel 5a 5G: 6.34-inch, Full HD+, 60Hz
- Pixel 6: 6.4-inch, Full HD+, 120Hz?
- Pixel 6 Pro: 6.67-inch/6.71-inch, Quad HD+, 120Hz?
The Google Pixel 5a 5G has a 6.34-inch display with a 2400 x 1080 pixel resolution. It offers a 60Hz refresh rate, which is slower than the Pixel 5 and what is expected for the Pixel 6 devices too. It's a flat display, as mentioned.
The Pixel 6 is rumoured to be coming with a 6.4-inch display with a Full HD+ resolution, though its said to have a 120Hz refresh rate display. It too is expected to be a flat display.
The Pixel 6 Pro meanwhile, is expected to come with a 6.67-inch display, or a 6.71-inch display - both have been mentioned in rumours - and it's said to have a Quad HD+ resolution. It too is expected to have a 120Hz refresh rate, though the display is thought to be slightly curved.
Hardware and specs
- Pixel 5a 5G: Qualcomm SD765G 5G, 6GB RAM, 128GB storage, 4620mAh
- Pixel 6: Google own Tensor chip, 8GB RAM, 128/256GB storage, 4614mAh
- Pixel 6 Pro: Google own Tensor chip, 12GB RAM, 128/256/512GB storage, 5000mAh
The Google Pixel 5a 5G runs on the Qualcomm Snapdragon 765G chipset, supported by 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. There's a 4620mAh battery capacity and an 18W charger in the box.
The Google Pixel 6 and 6 Pro will both run Google's own Tensor chip, which is rumoured to have a performance somewhere between the Snapdragon 865 and Snapdragon 888. The Pixel 6 is said to have 8GB of RAM, while the Pixel 6 Pro is said to have 12GB of RAM.
According to reports, the Pixel 6 will come in 128GB and 256GB storage options, while the Pixel 6 Pro will come in an additional 512GB model too. Both are expected to offer wireless charging, though neither is expected to come with a charger in the box.
The Pixel 6 is said to have a 4614mAh battery, while the Pixel 6 Pro is said to have a 5000mAh battery.
- Pixel 5a 5G: Dual camera (12.2MP + 16MP), 8MP front
- Pixel 6: Dual camera (50MP+12MP), 8MP front
- Pixel 6 Pro: Triple camera (50MP+48MP+12MP), 12MP front
The Google Pixel 5a 5G features a dual rear camera that is the same as the Pixel 5, meaning decent results. It consists of a 12.2-megapixel main sensor with 1.4µm pixels and f/1.7 aperture, and a 16-megapixel ultra wide-angle lens with 1.0µm pixels and f/2.2 aperture.
The front camera on the Pixel 5a 5G is an 8-megapixel snapper with 1.12µm pixels and f/2.0 aperture.
The Pixel 6 will come with a dual rear camera, while the Pixel 6 Pro will come with a triple rear camera. Google has yet to confirm the specifications for the cameras, though rumours claim both models will have a 50-megapixel main sensor and 12-megapixel ultra wide-angle sensor.
It's said the Pixel 6 Pro will then add a telephoto sensor as the third lens, though leaks have mentioned 8-megapixels and 48-megapixels for the resolution. The Pixel 6 is said to have an 8-megapixel front camera, while the Pixel 6 Pro is said to have a 12-megapixel front camera.
We'd expect the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro to offer the same features as the Pixel 5a 5G, including Night Sight for example. We'd also hope to see the same excellent point-and-shoot results as the Pixel 5, even though the hardware is expected to change.
- Pixel 5a 5G: $449, US and Japan only
- Pixel 6: TBC, Global availability expected
- Pixel 6 Pro: TBC, Global availaility expected
The Google Pixel 5a 5G is available to pre-order now for $449. It will go on sale 24 August, but you'll only be able to buy it in the US and Japan.
The Google Pixel 6 and 6 Pro are expected to be announced sometime in October. It is expected the Pixel 6 will have a starting price of at least £599 in the UK and $699 in the US, which is what the Pixel 5 started at, though it could be more.
The Pixel 6 Pro will likely be quite a bit more expensive than the Pixel 6 and therefore Pixel 5a 5G, though we'd hope the Pixel 6 models will offer wider availability.
Based on the speculation and confirmed details, the Pixel 5a 5G will offer a design similar to the Pixel 5 and Pixel 4a 5G, while the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro will offer entirely new designs and be larger than the Pixel 5a 5G.
It seems the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro devices will also have faster refresh rate displays, offer a more advanced processor, more RAM and more storage options. They will also be more colourful and it's likely they will have more advanced camera features too.
For now, most of the details surrounding the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro aren't confirmed - apart from their designs and chipset - but they will no doubt be more premium than the Pixel 5a 5G. The Pixel 5a 5G will be cheaper though, and it offers some great specifications. It's just not that easy to get hold of as availability is limited to the US and Japan, meaning for some, it won't be an option.
Writing by Britta O'Boyle. Originally published on 19 August 2021.