Battery Life

Battery life on the Pixel 3a XL should be good: The Snapdragon 670 SoC is manufactured on a 10LPP process node and the microarchitecture should be in line with the Snapdragon 845. In effect, I expect the unit to have similar efficiency as the S845 generation of flagships.

The battery capacity of the 3a XL is also relatively large: 3700mAh. It’s to be noted that Google here is advertising the rated capacity, whilst some other vendors in the last few years have started to advertise the typical battery capacity, which can be 100-150mAh higher than the rated one. Props to Google to remaining honest in their marketing numbers here.

Web Browsing Battery Life 2016 (WiFi)

In the our web-browsing test, we indeed see the Pixel 3a XL perform extremely well with a result of 11.3h. As I mentioned, the phone falls very closely to the efficiency of S845 devices with similar battery capacity: the OnePlus 6T being the closest comparison point to the 3a XL.

The phone is able to showcase much better battery life over the Pixel 2 XL and the Pixel 3 in the charts because these two phones suffer from inefficient LG panels and DDICs. Unfortunately we don’t have a Pixel 3 XL to compare to.

PCMark Work 2.0 - Battery Life

In PCMark we again see equality with S845 devices of similar capacity: Again the 3a XL falls in almost the same range as the OnePlus 6T here.

Overall, the battery life of the Pixel 3a XL is excellent. Google did well with opting not to go with LG for this line-up as I fear it would have resulted notably worse battery life results, and I hope the company does the same for the Pixel 4 phones.

Whilst we don’t have a review unit at hand to test, we expect the regular Pixel 3a to perform 15-20% worse, in line with the 23% smaller battery capacity of 3000mAh.

Display Measurement Camera - Daylight Evaluation
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  • UtilityMax - Thursday, August 1, 2019 - link

    The low Best Buy prices are for those who are activating a new carrier line. Without activation, the S8 is 500USD, and S9 is 600.

    I'll take a 400 Pixel 3A easy. Besides price, no round edges is a great win.
    Reply
  • Alistair - Thursday, June 27, 2019 - link

    My nephew trashed the babysitter's phone and needed to buy a new one recently. I really wanted to buy a Pixel 3A, but it is absolutely trashed by the value of the A50 from Samsung imo. $375 vs $550 in Canada. Reply
  • Stormbolter - Thursday, June 27, 2019 - link

    I would like to point that for the rest of the world, Google offers a clean Android Experience that Xiaomi, Huawei or Honor don't offer on the same price range - although Xiaomi, Nokia and Motorola do offer Android One devices, these are lower end, with worse camera and screen.

    And that the price difference fails to include VAT. Pixel 3a retails for 399/479€ in Spain. The Mi9 retails for ~449€ in the amazon marketplace, but stores (and phone providers) sell it for about 499€. Of course, if you're willing to forego warranty and such, you can import the phone for less, but then... so can someone living in USA (as long as they stick to GSM providers).

    Finally, Chinese flagships have all but done away with the phone jack, and middle class offerings tend to be lacking the good camera and screen flagships have.

    So, Pixel 3a /3a XL is a good option if you want a clean Android Experience, with a decent camera and screen, at a reasonable price.
    Reply
  • Andrei Frumusanu - Thursday, June 27, 2019 - link

    The Mi9 is 393€, VAT included, directly from Xiaomi on Amazon.de Reply
  • eastcoast_pete - Thursday, June 27, 2019 - link

    Xiaomi phones like the Mi9 can also be had in the US (Amazon and other online retailers). A possible alternative if one sticks to the GSM-based carriers (AT&T, T-MOBILE). However, make sure at least some of the LTE channels are covered by the modem. Reply
  • RSAUser - Thursday, June 27, 2019 - link

    The Nokia devices are definitely not lower end.
    The Nokia 8.1 has a better SoC, which is clocked higher plus HDR support for camera, with a slightly worse battery but the SoC is more power efficient and also has a Google Camera port. It delivers all of that at about 350 EUR inc. of taxes, but sadly not available in the U.S. for you folk.
    Reply
  • voicequal - Thursday, June 27, 2019 - link

    The headphone jack brought me to the Pixel 3a. It's been great so far. Now if dedicated home and back buttons would make a comeback, UI productivity would be back up to where it was on my first Android phone. Reply
  • imaheadcase - Thursday, June 27, 2019 - link

    No idea why "reviews" post how a phone looks or is "prone to scratches". Everyone uses a case anyway with a phone. You see many car reviews about them worry about scratches on them? Nope, its about the insides and engines.

    Just stop with the headphone jack nonsense, its not a big deal at all. Every test shows people can't tell a different sound wise vs wired with a phone. I've yet to find anyone in real world who cares. Hell most people prefer bluetooth over wired anyway for workout, running, work, etc.
    Reply
  • Ratman6161 - Thursday, June 27, 2019 - link

    Have to agree on the looks of a phone. My beautiful blue S9+ had a black plastic case on it before I even left the store. Its too darned expensive to take a chance on using it case-less.

    On the headphone jack...thats another matter. I have a set of blue tooth headphones (used with a TV set, not my S9). Sound quality is fine for my purpose. The problem is that they have a battery. So yet another thing that needs to be kept charged. Workout + running? Why would I want to run with a big honking phone strapped to my arm? For that I need something simple and cheap which is why I'm using my trusty old SanDisk MP3 player.
    Reply
  • Inteli - Thursday, June 27, 2019 - link

    I'm so glad you're here to tell all us plebians what we need and what we don't need. Of course nobody needs wired headphones! We also don't need anything above 128kbps MP3s. You're lying if you say you can hear a difference. You also don't need a car. Everybody in the city gets by fine without them! Your opinion is obviously the only one that matters and every reviewer should cater to exclusively what you think is important. Reply

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