Google Pixel 8a review: good phone; great camera

Combining a reliable camera with Google AI smarts and long-term software support, the Pixel 8a is good to great in most areas.

A photo of the Google Pixel 8a
(Image: © Basil Kronfli)

Digital Camera World Verdict

On paper, the Google Pixel 8a isn't the best value option around with its 128GB storage and modest camera and gaming specs, but thanks to Google's excellent photo processing and handy AI features, it edges ahead of much of the competition. Its photos are reliably good even in challenging scenes, and the photo editing tools also help it stand out for the right reasons.


  • +

    Reliable photo processing

  • +

    IP67 water and dust resistant

  • +

    Wireless charging

  • +

    Smart AI features


  • -

    Chunky styling won't be for all

  • -

    Underwhelming gaming performance

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    Plastic back doesn't feel premium

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    No optical zoom

Why you can trust Digital Camera World Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing products and services so you can choose the best for you. Find out how we test.

The Pixel 8a is a more affordable version of Google’s flagship Pixel 8 and 8 Pro. It packs pared-back hardware in a cutesy, bulbous package but still offers AI smarts and Google’s special sauce photo processing.

Starting at $499 in the US, £499 in the UK, and AU$849 in Australia for the 128GB model, the phone isn’t much cheaper than the Pixel 8, and it also has a lot of competition at its price. In the Apple camp, you can get a 2022 iPhone SE, or an iPhone 12, and Android fans could pick up the Samsung Galaxy A55 5G, Xiaomi 13T, or stump up extra cash for the Nothing Phone (2). Gamers would also be well served looking at the new Poco F6 Pro.

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Basil Kronfli

Basil Kronfli is a freelance technology journalist, consultant, and content creator. He trained in graphic design and started his career at Canon Europe before moving into journalism. Basil is also experienced in video production, independently running the YouTube channel TechEdit, and during his time at Future, he worked alongside the Digital Camera World team as a senior video producer.