Google Pixel 3a: A budget £399 phone in a premium market | Science & Tech News

Google has announced its new budget phone, the Pixel 3a – which at £399 is aimed at consumers turned off by more expensive devices.

The Pixel 3a measures 5.6in corner-to-corner, while the 6in Pixel 3a XL will set consumers back £469.

Where the company is making the savings is clear when it comes to the specifications – although consumers shopping for the neatest computers to carry around in their pockets aren’t typically focused on budget devices.

The Pixel 3a
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The Pixel 3a is aimed at consumers turned off by more expensive devices

Both of the 3a phones come with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 670 processing chip, a cheaper bit of kit, but one which the company expects will do the job for budget consumers.

In another definite bonus for those who aren’t buying a phone alongside a range of peripherals, the Pixel 3a devices keep the 3.5mm headphone hack which Apple was so maligned for ditching.

A 12MP rear camera is complemented by Googles HDR+ software which aims to automatically improve the image quality of smartphone pictures, rather than the expensive hardware in its rivals’ premium devices.

The mid-market display and the relatively limited 4GB RAM suggest the phone is potentially aimed at teenagers keen for an Instagram device but not so interested in gaming or any intensive computing.

Of course it comes with Android OS which Google develops, and Google promises to provide security updates for the 3a over at least three years.

The real strength of Google however is its services, and Google Search, Gmail, YouTube, and Google Maps are among the most dominant services on the internet – and the Pixel is built around keeping users on them, rather than rivals.

The Pixel 3a will also feature an AR maps guide
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The Pixel 3a will also feature an AR maps guide

Pixel 3a will offer users a preview of the augmented reality function in Maps in which walking directions will be overlaid on the world around the user rather than simply showing a blue arrow on a map.

Google claims the battery can deliver seven hours of use on a 15-minute charge, and can last up to 30 hours on a full charge.

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