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The Latest & Greatest Google Pixel Smartphone Options in 2023

Google doesn’t release as many phones as some other OEMs out there; in fact, they release three phones a year. There are the two flagships and then a mid-range(ish) phone in the A-series around Google I/O. And that’s it, which makes it a bit easier to find the right Google Pixel smartphone for you to buy.

However, there are still quite a few options available. So, we’ve rounded up the Best Google Pixel phones that you can currently buy. It’s worth mentioning that Google is only selling Pixel 7a, Pixel 8, Pixel 8 Pro, Pixel Fold, and Pixel 8 right now. And that’s actually all that we’re including since older phones will be losing support very soon.

Best Google Pixel Phones You Can Buy

Here are the best Google Pixel phones that you can buy right now. This list goes all the way down to the Pixel 6a. Here are some criteria we used to pick these phones in particular. For one, all of these phones have been updated for at least another year, and these are all still sold by reputable sellers on Amazon or Google. None of these are refurbished or renewed, but you can get refurbished or renewed models to save some more cash.

The order is based on when these phones came out, so the further down the list you go, the older they are and usually the cheaper they are.

Best Google Pixel smartphone: Google Pixel 8 Pro

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Google’s Pixel 8 Pro represents the best in design, camera and software in one complete package.

The Google Pixel 8 Pro is currently the best Pixel that you can buy. It’s the latest and greatest from Google, having been released in October 2023. And it also has the latest and greatest specs. It includes a 6.7-inch QHD+ Super Actua display. This display is a 120Hz adaptive display that can also get insanely bright. We’re looking at 2,400 nits peak brightness, the only phone that can get brighter is the OnePlus Open.

Additionally, the Pixel 8 Pro is powered by the Google Tensor G3 processor, 12GB of RAM, and 128GB of storage. Google is also offering 256GB, 512GB, and 1TB options. If you take a lot of photos, then you might want to look at getting more storage. It’s only $60 more to get to 256GB.

As usual with Pixel devices, the specs aren’t the whole story. But the camera is a bigger part. On the Pixel 8 Pro, Google has included a 50-megapixel main sensor, a 48-megapixel ultrawide, and a 48-megapixel telephoto lens. We all know that Google’s phones take incredible pictures. But they also have a good amount of smarts going into play here. And on the Pixel 8 Pro, Google has also added a number of AI features, including Magic Editor, which lets you really change up your photo. That includes changing the sky, removing objects (and recreating them), stylizing your photos, and much more.

With Google, it’s software as a whole that sets the Pixel apart, including Android 14. Google has included some more AI here, too, like the ability to create AI Wallpapers or use Google Assistant to summarize what’s on a webpage, and more. But perhaps the most surprising part of the Pixel 8 software is that Google is going to be updating its Pixel 8 and Pixel 8 Pro until 2030. That’s seven years of OS, security, and feature drops. That’s unheard of.

Google Pixel 8 Pro comes in three colors: Bay, Porcelain, and Obsidian, and has a starting price of $999.

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Best Compact Pixel smartphone: Google Pixel 8

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Pixel 8 is compact but still full of flagship specs, something of a dying breed.

Google’s Pixel 8 is one of the smaller phones on the market today, which makes it a rather interesting one. Since there are plenty of people that want a smaller phone, but can’t always get one. Typically, smaller phones sport lower-end specs, which just don’t hold up as nicely. But with the Pixel 8, you get a smaller phone and still get flagship specs.

With the Pixel 8, you’re getting a 6.2-inch display that is now a 120Hz adaptive display. Though it’s only 60 to 120Hz, it’s not going to go all the way down to 1Hz like the Pixel 8 Pro does. It is an Actua Display, too, which can get up to 2,000 nits of peak brightness. Inside, it does have the Tensor G3 processor, with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. It also has a 256GB option for only $60 more. That is all powered by the 4,575mAh capacity battery that’s inside. That should get you through a full day without any issues.

Like the Pixel 8 Pro, the Pixel 8 also gets seven years of OS, security, and feature drops, which means that you can keep this phone around for quite some time. It has a lot of the AI features of the Pixel 8 Pro, like the ability to make AI-generated wallpapers, which actually look really good. You can also use Google Assistant to read a webpage aloud or summarize it. Soon, Bard will merge with Google Assistant, making it an unstoppable digital assistant.

The cameras on the Pixel 8 are pretty good, too. We’re looking at a 50-megapixel main sensor and a 12-megapixel ultrawide. The Pixel 8 foregoes the telephoto sensor here, unfortunately. But it can do macro on the ultrawide this time around. That’s something the Pixel 7 could not do, so that’s good to see. Like the Pixel 8 Pro, it does have Magic Editor, as well as Best Take. Which essentially takes a burst shot of your group photo, and allows you to change people’s faces from the other shots the camera had taken. That way, you can get everyone looking at the camera simultaneously.

Google Pixel 8 has a starting price of $699 and is available in three colors. Those colors are Obsidian, Hazel, and Rose.

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Best Pixel Foldable: Google Pixel Fold

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A smaller, more passport-like foldable makes the Pixel Fold one of the best foldables on the market today.

This is Google’s first foldable, the Pixel Fold. And honestly, they really hit out of the park. I reviewed it earlier this year and absolutely loved it. I loved it so much that I continued to carry it for a few more months (until the OnePlus Open arrived). And that’s largely because of the size and the software; Google’s Pixel software is just so much better than most of the competition.

With the Pixel Fold, Google was looking to make a foldable that was small. A small foldable about the size of a passport. Which is why it has a wider display than even most regular-sized smartphones. Pixel Fold has a 17.4:9 aspect ratio on the front 5.8-inch display. That brings us back to the phones of 2016, and it’s a nice change. But what this means is that when you open the Pixel Fold, you get a landscape display instead of a portrait display. So you’re automatically in tablet app mode. Compared to other foldables.

The inside display is a 7.6-inch display that’s 2208×1840, making it very close to a square, which is the issue with most foldables. That main display is not the same as a tablet since tablets are generally much wider. So, apps need to be refitted for these displays. It’s happening slowly but surely. Google has continued to make loads of changes to the Pixel Fold, including allowing users to change the aspect ratio of different apps, like Instagram.

Google’s Pixel Fold does have several great software features and even some that let you use the Pixel Fold in tent mode. So you can have a built-in kickstand to watch YouTube on the cover display. Another interesting feature is going to be the dual-display Google Translate, allowing you to talk to someone in another language using both displays at the same time. This feature is just now starting to roll out, but it’s a game-changing feature for those who travel a lot.

Google has also outfitted the Pixel Fold with a Tensor G2 processor, 12GB of RAM, and 256GB of storage. Google also offers a 512GB model, and it comes in Obsidian and Porcelain. There is a 4,821mAh capacity battery inside, which is quite large for a book-style foldable. And despite the Pixel Fold being a bit smaller than, say, the OnePlus Open or Galaxy Z Fold 5, it is actually heavier. It weighs in at 283g.

Google’s Pixel Fold starts at $1,799, making it a fairly expensive phone. But you are getting a phone and a tablet here in one device. It also comes in two colors: Obsidian and Porcelain.

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Best Mid-Range Pixel: Google Pixel 8a

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Want the Pixel experience without a high price tag? Google’s Pixel 8a is the one for you.

The Google Pixel 8a is our top-choice for a mid-range Pixel smartphone. It’s the newest a-series from Google, and still priced at $499. Google is selling the Pixel 8a in Aloe, Bay, Porcelain and Obsidian colors. The Aloe color is a very bright green that is really unique for Google.

We reviewed the Google Pixel 8a back in May and found that it was a really great smartphone to pick up. Calling it “The Same Phone You Love, Now With More AI”. It’s one of the smaller phones that’s on the market, especially in terms of screen size and having a flagship processor inside. Which makes it a contender for a lot of people. I really liked the smaller size, however the cameras are a bit lacking here compared to the Pro model. That’s primarily because of the lack of a telephoto on the Pixel 8a.

Now there are some downsides to the Pixel 8a, of course Google did need to cut some corners to hit this price point. That includes the battery, which is not that great. We found in our review that the battery life was okay, and that was about it. Charging is also very slow here, but that’s the case for every Pixel, unfortunately. And Google did not include reverse wireless charging.

For those looking for a new phone on a budget, this is likely the best way to go at this point. Unless you can find a Pixel 8 or Pixel 8 Pro at a discount.

Buy at Amazon

Best Budget Google Pixel: Google Pixel 6a

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The Pixel 7a is older but still very compelling, if you can get a deal

The Google Pixel 7a is a top choice for those who want a cheaper phone but not an old phone. The Pixel 7a was released in 2023, and will continue getting updates until 2028, making it a good phone to buy. It comes in at a regular price of $499 and in four playful colors. Those colors include Charcoal, Snow, Sea, and Coral. Google is actually selling this for the same price as the Pixel 8a, surprisingly, so if you can find it on a good sale, it’s a good option.

Pixel 7a is pretty popular because of its size. It has a 6.1-inch FHD+ 90Hz OLED display powered by the Tensor G3 processor, with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage on board. There’s also a 4,385mAh capacity battery that should get you through the day.

When we reviewed the Pixel 7a earlier this year, we found it to be one of the best-value smartphones on the market. There are loads of other phones around $500, but many of them are not as great as this package from Google.

Perhaps the most impressive part of the Pixel 7a is the camera. Now, on paper, it’s going to look like it’s better than the Pixel 8 series, but that’s not entirely true. It does have a 64-megapixel main sensor and a 13-megapixel ultrawide. However, these sensors are smaller than those on the Pixel 7 and Pixel 8 series. But when you’re actually using the phones, you won’t notice much of a difference. With Google’s post-processing on these images and video, the images look basically the same. They look great, even in low light.

Surprisingly, the Google Pixel 7a is still dust and waterproof, with a rating of IP67. You could also take this to the pool or use it in the shower without any issues. It did launch with Android 13 but has since been updated to Android 14, and it will get a few more updates.

So, at a price of $499, it’s hard to recommend any other phone than the Pixel 7a because it does everything so well at that price.

Buy at Amazon

What is the best Google Pixel smartphone?

Currently, the best Google Pixel Smartphone is the Google Pixel 8 Pro. It is also the latest and greatest from the company. The reason why we have chosen this phone as the best comes down to five main reasons. Firstly, the build quality. Google has built a stunning device that is going to withstand everything you throw at it. There’s also the incredible display that can get up to 2,400 nits of brightness, which is absolutely incredible.

Of course, if you’re looking for something a bit smaller, then the Pixel 8 is also a good option. It offers everything that the Pixel 8 Pro offers, but in a smaller package – without a telephoto camera. It’s also a solid $300 less.

How did we pick the best Google Pixel smartphone?

Here at Android Headlines, we have spent countless hours testing, using, and abusing the latest Pixel phones from Google. We have put all of these Pixel smartphones through a ton of testing over the past few years and can recommend these Pixel phones to different people.

The main criteria for picking the best Google Pixel smartphone are the display, camera, and battery life. The display on the Pixel 8 Pro is simply stunning and bright. One of the brightest on the market today. The camera is, as always, one of the best on the market right now, with added AI features like Magic Editor and Magic Eraser. And, of course, the cameras can take some great photos on their own—finally, the battery life. Google’s Pixels aren’t well-known for the best battery life since switching over to the Tensor chipset. But the Pixel 8 Pro does have the largest and best battery life performance currently, which helps to make it the best Pixel you should buy today.

Should I care about software updates?

Yes, of course, you should care. The last thing you want is to buy a phone and it stops receiving updates before you’re ready for a new phone. Luckily, with the Pixel 8 series, that won’t be an issue. Google promises seven years of security, operating system, and feature drops for the Pixel 8 and Pixel 8 Pro. Meaning they will be supported all the way until 2030.

That is not the case for the Pixel Fold, the Pixel 7a and the Pixel 6a – all on this list. If you plan to keep your phone for a few years, you will want to spend the extra cash on the Pixel 8 series.

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