Google upped the ante with its Pixel 6a follow-up, the Pixel 7a. It’s an affordable option in the line, yet has premium features, including the same Google Tensor G2 chip as its big brothers, the Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro. With an all-day battery, sleek design, and promise of security and OS updates for years to come, it’s a solid option.
- High-end camera features
- Same processor as the 7, 7 Pro
- 5 years of security updates
- No fast charging
One of the most affordable Galaxies
If you want to enter the world of Samsung Galaxy phones, the Samsung Galaxy A54 is one of the most affordable options you can get. Despite its lower price tag, however, you also get tons of premium features, from a fast refresh rate to plenty of RAM, an octa-core processor, and stunning cameras.
- Large sized screen
- Seamlessly share with other Samsung devices
- Storage options up to 1TB via microSD
- Ultra-fast refresh rate
- No wireless charging
- Screen might be too big for some
Google Pixel 7a vs. Samsung Galaxy A54: The design
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The Google Pixel 7a vs. Samsung Galaxy A54 is a fair fight, with both smartphones serving as affordable alternatives in the Pixel and Galaxy space, respectively.
The Pixel 7a is made from recycled aluminum, glass, and plastic, but looks much more expensive than it is, as noted by Nicholas Sutrich in his review of the phone. He does admit that the plastic back is a “dust and fingerprint magnet.” But considering you’ll likely have a protective case on it anyway, this might not matter much.
Available in cool finishes like Coral, Sea, Charcoal, and Snow, it has a scratch- and dust-resistant 6.1-inch FHD+OLED screen (2,400 x 1,080) made of Corning Gorilla Glass 3 and features an up to 90Hz refresh rate. Sutrich calls the screen “bright and beautiful.” Currently, the phone comes bundled from the Google Store with a pair of Pixel Buds A-series true wireless earbuds along with a limited-edition phone case.
Measuring 6 x 2.8 inches and just 0.4 inches thin, the phone recharges via USB-C Type C 3.2 Gen 2 and has an all-day 4,385 mAh battery that can last for up to three days per charge with limited use. It supports wireless charging but there are no fast charging capabilities, which could be a dealbreaker for some, though the battery is pretty generous.
With fingerprint and face unlock, it comes equipped with dual SIMs, stereo speakers, two mics with noise cancellation, and 128GB of storage.
As Sutrich also noted in his Samsung Galaxy A54 review, this stellar phone comes in cool colors, too, like Awesome Graphite and Awesome Violet, and features a sleek frame that oozes elegance. The 2,340 x 1,080 Super AMOLED display is much larger at 6.4 inches and the FHD+ Infinity-O display extends to the edges of the screen. It also boasts an impressive 120Hz refresh rate, which will matter to gamers, multitaskers, video streamers, and others who plan to put the phone through its paces with plenty of high-res video files.
Measuring 6.2 x 3.02 x 0.3 inches, it’s slightly thinner than the Pixel 7a but a bit wider given the larger screen size. Not by much, however, which is impressive since you get more screen real estate with this phone. With an IP67 rating for water and dust resistance, the 5,000 mAh battery lasts up to 46 hours for talk time and 20 hours when using the Internet, which is somewhat in line with the Pixel 7a. Plus, this phone supports fast charging with compatible chargers, though it does not have wireless charging.
The phone comes with 128GB or 256GB storage but you can expand this up to 1TB using an optional microSD card, which might be important to those who want to load tons of apps and take and download lots of photos and videos. The Galaxy A54 also has stereo speakers.
Google Pixel 7a vs. Samsung Galaxy A54: The specs
Before I get further into how these two phones operate, let’s look at how they compare on paper when it comes to the specs.
|Header Cell - Column 0
|Google Pixel 7a
|Samsung Galaxy A54
|Android 13 (One UI)
|Coral, Sea, Charcoal, Snow
|Awesome Graphic, Awesome Violet
|2,400 x 1,080
|2,340 x 1,080
|Google Tensor G2
|Samsung Exynos 1380
|Memory Card Slot
|Yes (up to 1TB)
|Dual 64MP, 13MP Ultra-Wide, 13 MP Front
|50MP, 12MP Ultra-Wide, 32MP Front, 5MP Macro
|Rated Battery Life
|Up to 24 Hours (Internet)
|Up to 20 Hours
|6 x 2.8 x 0.4 inches
|6.22 x 3.02 x 0.3 inches
Google Pixel 7a vs. Samsung Galaxy A54: Processors, cameras, and other features
The Google Pixel 7a has impressive camera features, which you’ll also find in other Pixel devices. Among these is Magic Eraser, which allows you to manually (or intelligently) remove distracting people or elements from the backgrounds of photos. There’s also Photo Unblur, which can remove the blurriness of photos that have mild blurring in them. Then there are others like Long Exposure, Night Sight, Super Res Zoom, and more.
This is all possible thanks to the Google Tensor G2 chip, which is the same chip found in the Google Pixel 7 and 7 Pro, and is now available in the affordable step-down option, the Pixel 7a. Sutrich cites several benchmark tests that discovered the Pixel 7a was overall faster than the Galaxy A54 5G.
All the photos as well as 4K videos can be taken using the dual 64MP main camera, the 13MP ultrawide camera with 120° field-of-view, and the front 13MP camera with a still wide 95° field-of-view. Sutrich calls the camera the “best you’ll find anywhere.”
With up to 8GB RAM and 128GB storage, you can take tons of photos and videos for sharing. The stereo speakers and two mics with noise cancellation help when recording video, listening to music, watching videos, and more. This is combined with other features like Real Tone, which accurately represents skin tones on the screen.
Phones are used for calling, too, something we often forget. And the Pixel 7a comes with compelling call features like Clear Calling which auto-enhances the caller’s voice and reduces background noises, and Call Assist, which helps do things like limit unwanted calls and reduce the amount of time you need to spend on hold.
With at least five years of security updates, three OS updates, and Feature Drops every few months, you can rest assured that the Google Pixel 7 will be current for some time to come, which adds tremendous value to the already affordable purchase.
The Samsung Galaxy A54 has an impressive camera system, too, which includes a 50MP main camera, 32MP front camera, 12MP ultra-wide camera, and a 5MP macro camera. The Pixel 7a’s camera specs are slightly higher but the Galaxy A54 adds a macro option for extreme close-ups. You can also take stable videos using VDIS and auto framing with the Galaxy A54, along with night photos using nightography, wide shots with wide OIS, and more using the advanced image sensor.
This is coupled with the ultra-fast octa-core processor that ensures the phone can keep up with whatever you are doing, from multitasking to shooting or watching videos, playing games, and more. Also helping in this respect is the generous up to 8GB RAM.
You’ll get great security through Samsung Knox Security and features like secure folders where you can store encrypted files that are for your eyes only and require additional protection. With Quick Share, you can easily share content among various Samsung devices.
Google Pixel 7a vs. Samsung Galaxy A54: Which should you buy?
The Google Pixel Tablet vs. Samsung Galaxy A54 are both affordable options in their respective line-ups. Naturally, if you are transitioning from an older-model Samsung Galaxy phone, the Galaxy A54 might be a logical upgrade. This is especially so if you have other Samsung devices in the home and for use on the go, from a TV to a pair of earbuds. If you’re good with either phone type, the decision becomes more difficult.
The Google Pixel 7a excels in terms of being smaller and still feature-rich, with a wonderful camera and photography features along with a fast processor that lives up to its bigger brothers, the Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro. The Samsung Galaxy A54 offers similar performance as well as cool photography features, too. But as noted, our tests found that the Pixel 7a offered faster performance.
In both cases, you’re promised OS and security updates for years, which means they both have longevity. If you want wireless charging, you’ll have to go with the Google Pixel 7a. It also offers longer battery life, overall. For expandable onboard storage, the Samsung Galaxy A54 is the better option.
Both are solid devices in their price range. So, it may come down to a matter of preference in terms of design, colors, and which brand you prefer to stick to or go with. But considering Sutrich calls the Pixel 7a the “new king of the best cheap Android phones” with an “off-the-charts” price-to-performance ratio,” you should take a look at this new phone, as it’s worth every penny.
Long battery, powerful processing
You’ll get the performance of a premium phone with the Google Pixel 7a without the hefty price tag. If this is your first Android phone, it’s a perfect entry into the category. Enticing features and inclusions, such as a pair of Pixel Buds and a protective case, make it an attractive value proposition right now.
A good starter
If you’re looking to familiarize yourself with Samsung Galaxy phones and plan to upgrade to something more premium, the Galaxy A54 is a good choice. It offers a powerful processor, expandable memory, and fast charging; plus OS updates for years. So, you can confidently hand it down to someone once you’re ready to explore higher-end options.
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Christine Persaud has been writing about tech since long before the smartphone was even a "thing." When she isn't writing, she's working on her latest fitness program, binging a new TV series, tinkering with tech gadgets she's reviewing, or spending time with family and friends. A self-professed TV nerd, lover of red wine, and passionate home cook, she's immersed in tech in every facet of her life. Follow her at @christineTechCA.