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Google Pixel 7 Review

With a satirical edge and undertones of technology, gadgets and accessories, I aim to make my writing both informative and entertaining.

The Google Pixel 7 has a custom-designed CPU and GPU.

The Google Pixel 7 has a custom-designed CPU and GPU.

The Google Pixel 7

The Google Pixel 7 arrived with more pressure than most new smartphones. Most smartphones only need to persuade cautious consumers that the device's new features and improvements are worthwhile. The Pixel 7 must accomplish both of these goals, as well as persuade us that Google may be onto something with its custom-designed CPU and GPU.

As a standalone device, the Pixel does attempt to tackle this problem. The new phone has Google's usual excellent computational photography and a new Tensor chip for even more advanced machine learning and computer vision applications. And that means there will be brand new features and capabilities exclusive to the Pixel 7 series that may sway consumers to give Google's phones a try.

The new phone has Google's usual excellent computational photography and a new Tensor chip for even more advanced machine learning and computer vision applications.

The new phone has Google's usual excellent computational photography and a new Tensor chip for even more advanced machine learning and computer vision applications.

Specs

Screen size

6.3 inches

Resolution

2400 x 1080 pixels

Processor

Google Tensor G2

Cameras

Two rear cameras (50MP main and 12MP ultra-wide angle) and 10.8MP front camera

RAM

8GB

Storage space

128GB or 256GB

MicroSD card slot

No

Weight

197g

Design

  • Distinct design like by the Pixel 6
  • Slightly smaller than the Pixel 6 but still feels big for its screen size
  • IP68 water and dust resistant

The Pixel 6 series of mobile devices, released by Google in 2021, represented a significant departure from the previous iterations for a variety of reasons, the most obvious of which being the new aesthetic they adopted.

One year on, the Pixel 7 (and Pixel 7 Pro) exhibit a more progressive, rather than revolutionary appearance, with solid color behind the rounded Gorilla Glass Victus back, split by metalwork. This is in stark contrast to the two-tone approach to color typified by the Kinda Coral Pixel 6.

The most noticeable change is the replacement of the black glass "visor" that originally covered the different cameras on mobile devices with an exposed array of sensors and lenses. This year, it's been swapped out for a metal-heavy design that highlights the lenses rather than covering them up. It divides opinion and stands out from the pack, making this iteration of Pixels as easy to spot as any in a competitive genre.

The metal in issue is aluminum, which is softly textured on the Pixel 7 (and polished on the Pixel 7 Pro), giving the phone an almost jewelry-like feel, especially in the generation's highlight color choice.

The Pixel 7 has an almost jewelry-like feel

The Pixel 7 has an almost jewelry-like feel

Price and Availability

  • Announced October 6, on sale October 13
  • Prices start at $599
  • Same pricing as the Pixel 6

After being introduced on October 6, the Google Pixel 7 became available for pre-order and began shipping on October 13. Google is proud to announce that the base price of the gadget, $599.

The prices listed above are for the entry-level 128GB storage model; a more capacious 256GB model can be purchased for an additional $600.

As with the Pixel 6 series, the Pixel 7 does not include a power converter, so if you want to keep your device within the Google ecosystem and charge it at the fastest potential rate (21W), you'll need to shell out an extra $25 for Google's compatible 30W USB-C adapter.

It has a metal-heavy design that highlights the lenses rather than covering them up.

It has a metal-heavy design that highlights the lenses rather than covering them up.

Display

  • 6.3-inch Full HD+ 20:9 90Hz OLED always-on display
  • Display protected by Gorilla Glass Victus
  • 90Hz peak refresh rate feels behind the curve

The Pixel 7's screen size is somewhat smaller than that of the Pixel 6, going from 6.4 to 6.3 inches. It's a nice touch that sets it apart from the similarly named Pixel 7 Pro, which boasts a gargantuan 6.7-inch display.

The Pixel 7's display is barely crisper than the Pixel 6's thanks to its same Full HD+ resolution and 20:9 aspect ratio. It has a maximum brightness of 1400 nits and may reach up to 1000 nits under typical conditions, making it 25% brighter than the display on the Pixel 6.

Even though the phone's screen is covered by Gorilla Glass Victus and the bezels are less than on last year's model, the device as a whole is noticeably thicker than its display size would indicate.

You still get a gorgeous OLED display with wide viewing angles, vibrant colors, deep blacks, and a snappy feel, but the refresh rate is capped at 90 hertz.

The optical in-display fingerprint sensor hasn't been as troublesome as the last model's at launch, which is good news, and the device's ability to switch between several color profiles, Night Light (to decrease eye strain), and basic always-on capabilities are all welcome additions.

You get a gorgeous OLED display with wide viewing angles, vibrant colors, deep blacks, and a snappy feel.

You get a gorgeous OLED display with wide viewing angles, vibrant colors, deep blacks, and a snappy feel.

Software and Features

  • Android 13 on Pixel 7 offers a clean, fun user experience
  • Promised standout features locked behind 'feature drops' coming after launch
  • Three years of OS upgrades, five years of security patches

Pixel & comes with Android 13. The most notable change in recent years has been the introduction of Google's Material You design language, which is responsible for the Pixel 7's signature clean and easy-to-navigate user experience. Android 13 expands its reach by applying intelligently created color theming to app icons, menus, and more to make them match your background.

Pixel's launcher is quite bare-bones in comparison to other options, but it does have a few extras that are exclusive to Android 13.

Excellent haptic integration gives everything from unlocking the phone with the fingerprint sensor to typing on the keyboard a sense of weight and quality, and the media playback bar in the notifications shade now has an undulating wiggle that adds a little character and interest on-screen.

Googl says that 'feature drops,' will come later after launch.

Depending on the level of customization you're given by Google, one such feature is a built-in free VPN that will increase your security and privacy while you're online and may even let you watch material from other countries using your preferred streaming app.

The new Tensor G2 processor inside the Pixel 7 focuses on machine learning and AI-based operations, just as Google's first Tensor SoC (system-on-chip), which translates to enhanced photo processing and speech-to-text skills in practice.

The Pixel 7 lacks the 48MP telephoto sensor found on the Pixel 7 Pro, but it does share the same 50MP primary camera and 12MP ultra-wide seen on the Pro.

The Pixel 7 lacks the 48MP telephoto sensor found on the Pixel 7 Pro, but it does share the same 50MP primary camera and 12MP ultra-wide seen on the Pro.

Camera

  • 50MP main + 12MP ultrawide rear cameras
  • 10.8MP front-facing punch-hole camera
  • New features include Photo Unblur and Cinematic Blur (for video)
  • Enhanced digital zoom doesn't compare to optical telephoto

The Pixel 7 lacks the 48MP telephoto sensor found on the Pixel 7 Pro, but it does share the same 50MP primary camera and 12MP ultra-wide seen on the Pro (however the ultra-wide on the ordinary 7 lacks focusing, thus there is no additional Macro Focus feature). This year, both the base and Pro versions have a 10.8-megapixel punch-hole camera for taking selfies, as well as 4K video recording at up to 60 frames per second and 10-bit HDR video capture for improved color accuracy, dynamic range, and contrast.

While the hardware is intriguing, the Tensor G2 chip ensures that the Pixel camera experience is all about the processing and software.

The Pixel 7 contains the new Google Tensor G2 SoC w/ 8GB RAM

The Pixel 7 contains the new Google Tensor G2 SoC w/ 8GB RAM

Performance

  • New Google Tensor G2 SoC w/ 8GB RAM
  • Focus on machine learning and AI functionality

Testing the Pixel 7's (and 7 Pro's) Tensor G2 hardware is more difficult than with traditional smartphone chipsets, particularly when it comes to measuring the artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) workloads it is built for.

However, according to what we know about Tensor G2, thanks to Google's public statements, our testing of the original Tensor chip inside the Pixel 6 series, and leaks about the upcoming Pixel 7, it lacks the raw power of phones like the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra that are powered by Qualcomm's Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 chip. However, practical application is unlikely to notice the difference.

Even with the highest quality settings in games like Genshin Impact and Apex Legends, the Pixel 7 maintained a smooth 60 frames per second (fps) when swiping through Android. Don't buy it thinking it can compete with the top-tier gaming phones on the market; nevertheless, if you must use it to challenge your pals in Call of Duty Mobile, you won't be disappointed.

In addition to Tensor's general proficiency, the phone's speech-to-text features, such as Live Dictation, performed nearly flawlessly (which is especially impressive given that it uses an on-device model) and the phone's long-awaited face unlock proved to be entirely viable, reliable, and quick, leaving us to wonder what stopped Google from including it on the Pixel 6.

Beyond fingerprint (and now face) unlocking, it is important to note that Google's Titan M2 processor, first seen in the first Tensor SoC last year, is also included. It's a reliable piece of hardware that meets or exceeds the requirements of modern security protocols, so you can rest easy knowing that your passwords and sensitive information are safe.

Google asserts that the Pixel 7's battery life may last for 24 hours with typical use.

Google asserts that the Pixel 7's battery life may last for 24 hours with typical use.

Battery Life

  • Smaller 4,355mAh battery compared to Pixel 6
  • Can get through a day of heavy use on a full charge
  • 21W wired charging is behind the curve, but fine

Although the 4,355mAh battery in the Google Pixel 7 seems substantial, we would have preferred a larger unit, especially considering that it has less capacity than the 4,614mAh battery in the Google Pixel 6. However, Google asserts that the Pixel 7's battery life may last for 24 hours with typical use.

If you're still worried about your battery life while on the go, turn on Extreme Battery Saver mode.

Extreme Battery Saver allows you to whitelist apps you still want to access while suppressing any unapproved apps and background services, and the Pixel 7 can be set to intelligently schedule when to turn on Battery Saver if it doesn't think you'll make it to your next regular recharge time, based on your typical schedule.

The Pixel 7's battery performance is probably not its life but its charging speed, which is unchanged from the Pixel 6 at 21W.
When utilizing Google's approved 30W USB-C charger, the Pixel 7 can get to 50% charge in 30 minutes, which is decent but nothing to brag about.

The Battery Share function supports both forward and reverse wireless charging, making it ideal for individuals who prefer not to lug about a bunch of wires but still need to charge their wireless headphones or smartwatches.

google-pixel-7-review

Verdict

Even if we ignore the fact that the Pixel 6 exists, the Pixel 7 is still a fantastic buy at its starting price of £599, so our recommendation of it shouldn't come as much of a surprise. It's a great smartphone, and even if we ignore the fact that it has a predecessor, it's still a great deal.

However, since we live in a world where the Pixel 6 is still available, our recommendation would be to go with that model if you want the majority of the amazing features of a Pixel at a price that is more affordable. If you really must have the most recent offering from Google, your best bet is the refined Google Pixel 7 smartphone. It has a more refined design, the newest innovative features, new photographic talents, and an upgraded high-resolution selfie camera. In addition, the selfie camera has been updated.

This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.