The Google Pixel 7 steps up on power, keeps price in check
Uprated internals but same mid-range starting point
Meet the new mainstream darling of the Pixel family. The Google Pixel 7 arrives with slicker styling, a step up in camera quality, and more power courtesy of second-gen Tensor silicon – but doesn’t play fast and loose with what we’ve come to expect from a Google-badged smartphone.
The sensibly-sized, 6.3in handset was officially revealed alongside its bigger brother, the Pixel 7 Pro, and the Pixel Watch wearable. Landing in Obsidian, Snow and Lemongrass colours (otherwise known as black, white and light green), with a Zirconium metal finish for the now-familiar camera ‘shelf’, the Pixel 7 should feel a little more premium than its predecessor.
Up front, the screen bezels are much skinnier, which should put all attention on the OLED panel. It’s as much as 25% brighter than the outgoing Pixel 6, while retaining the same Full HD-and-a-bit resolution and 90Hz refresh rate.
Underneath, the Tensor G2 CPU is paired with a Titan M2 security chip, 8GB of RAM and 128GB of on-board storage. Google promises it’ll be plenty powerful for running Android 13, while consuming less power than the first-gen Tensor did in day-to-day jobs. Owners can expect a healthy five years of security updates, along with the Google One VPN service bundled in for no extra cost to stay safe while browsing online. An in-display fingerprint sensor handles biometrics, or you can use face unlock to skip the lock screen.
There’ll be a handful of Pixel-specific feature drops, starting with audio message transcription for Google Messages (so you can read, rather than listen, to any incoming voice clips). Clear calling, a way of reducing background noise while on voice calls, will land later in the year. Otherwise you can expect the same clean, bloat-free version of Android Pixel fans have long been accustomed to.
Hardware-wise things haven’t changed all that much for the rear cameras, which get a 50MP main snapper and 12MP ultrawide. Google has instead focused on software improvements. Night Sight low light shooting should be as much as 2x faster as the previous generation, while also producing pics that are less blurry. Some algorithmic tweakage has given face unblur a significant step up, and Google’s Real Tone image processing should do better with different skin tones.
On the video front, every camera now supports 4K 60fps recording (even the front-facing selfie cam). The rear cameras get an updated active stabilisation mode for smoother footage when shooting handheld, along with 10-bit HDR support.
Google hasn’t really stepped things up on the battery front, finding room for a 4355mAh cell that’s smaller than the one seen in the Pixel 6. It’ll still do just fine for all-day use, and should stretch to 72 hours between charges with the Extreme Battery Saver mode. There’s 30W wired charging on board (not the quickest around, but as speedy as any Samsung or Apple handset) and wireless charging if you want to go cable-free.
Google opens Pixel 7 pre-orders today, with the phone going on general sale from the 13th of October alongside the Pixel 7 Pro and Pixel Watch. Prices will start from £599 in the UK and €649 in Europe.