Google Pixel 5: Everything you need to know before buying

Google Pixel 5: Everything you need to know before buying


Source: Daniel Bader / Android Central

Following last year’s controversial Pixel 4, Google is ready to right some wrongs with the all-new Pixel 5. The Pixel 4 introduced new ideas like a telephoto camera, face unlock system, and unique gestures, but it did so at the expense of battery life. This time around, Google’s trying something a bit different.

Rather than be concerned about having the highest-end processor or five cameras, Google designed the Pixel 5 to be a meat and potatoes Android phone that does everything you need it to do, has all of the core features you could ask for, and comes in at a much lower price than the latest flagships from Samsung and Apple.

Whether you want to learn more about its price, release date, specs, or anything else, here’s everything you need to know about the Google Pixel 5!

Buy the Pixel 5

Google Pixel 5

The newest Pixel has arrived

Google packed a lot into the Pixel 5, including a 90Hz OLED display, dual cameras, wireless charging, you name it. It’s also the cheapest flagship Pixel we’ve had in a long time, making it a great alternative to pricier options.

How much does the Google Pixel 5 cost?

Google Pixel 5

Source: Google

One of the most interesting things about the Pixel 5 is its price. In a world where top-of-the-line phones from most other companies cost upwards of $1,000, the Pixel 5 is refreshingly affordable at just $699. It’s worth noting that there’s just one storage configuration being offered, with the Pixel 5 coming with 128GB of space for your apps, games, and movies.

When you compare this side-by-side with 2019’s Pixel 4 series, it’s pretty impressive how much more affordable the Pixel 5 actually is. The 128GB Pixel 4 retailed for $899, with the 128GB Pixel 4 XL costing $999.

There are some spec changes/cuts that allowed Google to hit that lower price tag, but especially in the economic climate we live in today, we’re more than happy to see Google focusing on affordability for its top offering.

When can I buy the Pixel 5?

Google Pixel 5

Source: Google

If you want to be among the first to own a Google Pixel 5, you can go and pre-order the phone right now. It’s available in Just Black and Subtle Sage colors, with Google choosing to not offer a white model at all this year.

Here’s when the Pixel 5 will be available in its countries of release:

  • October 15: Australia, France, Germany, Ireland, Japan, Taiwan, United Kingdom
  • October 29: Canada, United States

The good news is that you can buy the Pixel 5 before it goes on sale: it’s available for pre-orderin every country it will be sold in.

What are the specs for the Google Pixel 5?

Google Pixel 5 and Pixel 4a 5G

Source: Google

Here are the Google Pixel 5 specs:

CategoryGoogle Pixel 5
Full HD+
90Hz refresh rate
19.5:9 aspect ratio
Gorilla Glass 6
Operating SystemAndroid 11
ProcessorQualcomm Snapdragon 765G
Rear Camera 112.2MP primary camera
f/1.7 aperture
Rear Camera 216MP ultra-wide camera
f/2.2 aperture
Memory8GB of RAM
Battery4,080 mAh
Charging18W wired charging
15W wireless charging
5W reverse wireless charging
SecurityFingerprint sensor
ColorsSorta Sage, Just Black

The Pixel 5 has an amazing price. But how in the world did Google pull it off? A quick look at the spec sheet makes it clear why the Pixel 5 is able to cost as little as it does.

The main takeaway here is that Qualcomm Snapdragon 765G processor. All previous Pixels (not counting Pixel a devices) have shipped with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 800-series chip — the highest-end option offered by Qualcomm. Other flagships like the Galaxy S20 and OnePlus 8 Pro utilize the Snapdragon 865, but that’s not the case for the Pixel 5.

The Snapdragon 765 chipset inside the Pixel 5 is more than powerful enough for any app or game you throw at it, and with this decision, you get to benefit from high-end performance without having to pay out the nose for it.

Looking at some of the other specs, it’s great to see that Google once again offers a 90Hz refresh rate for the Pixel 5’s display, along with an OLED panel for great colors and deep blacks. The 4,080 mAh battery is also substantially larger than the 2,800 mAh unit the Pixel 4 shipped with, which should allow for a night and day difference when it comes to battery life. All of the makings are here for the Pixel 5 to be one of the new best Android phones, and when you factor in that low price tag, it becomes that much more impressive.

How many colors does the Google Pixel 5 come in?

Google Pixel 5 Sorta Sage

Source: Google

Google doesn’t offer a ton of color options for its smartphones, but with every release, there’s usually one that stands out over the more generic black and white options. This year’s colors are even more limited with just two to choose from, including Just Black and Sorta Sage.

Just Black is exactly what the name implies — a black paint job and nothing more. The matte aluminum finish is much preferred over the glossy glass we had for the Pixel 4 in Just Black, but outside of that, there’s not much else to say.

On the other hand, we have Sorta Sage. It’s not nearly as bright or punchy as the Pixel 4’s Oh So Orange color, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. It has a cool, earthy tone to it that looks really nice, and it’s definitely the color we prefer this time around.

Does the Pixel 5 still have the best camera?

Google Pixel 5 Camera

Source: Google

Camera quality is always the number one reason to buy a Pixel phone over anything else — that’s why the Pixel 4 XL, despite its problems was one of the best Android phones you can buy — and for the Pixel 5, Google’s trying something it’s never done before.

The primary camera is the exact same 12.2MP sensor that we’ve had for years, but on the Pixel 5, it’s joined by a 16MP ultra-wide camera. This is the first time any Pixel phone has shipped with an ultra-wide lens, and the telephoto one that was introduced on the Pixel 4 is nowhere to be seen.

Google made a big deal last year about how telephoto was more important than ultra-wide, so it’s a bit funny to see the company correcting course one generation later. The telephoto camera on the Pixel 4 was very good, but the switch to ultra-wide is one we’re excited to see.

Outside of that, you’ll notice those are the only cameras present on the back of the Pixel 5. In a world where so many phones are shipping with four or five different rear cameras, Google’s decision to only offer two does go against market trends. However, as we’ve seen time and time again, having one or two excellent cameras instead of a bunch of extra ones that aren’t any good is usually preferable.

Does the Google Pixel 5 introduce new Android 11 features?

Hold for Me on the Pixel 5

Source: Google

Whenever Google launches a new Pixel phone, it often uses it as a vehicle for introducing new Android features. This is no different with the Pixel 5, which comes with a few software goodies not previously seen anywhere else.

One of the biggest new additions is an Assistant feature called “Hold For Me.” When you’re placed on hold when on a phone call, you can now tap a button that has the Assistant hold your place in line while you go off and do anything else. When a customer service agent comes on the line, the Assistant lets you know so you can hop back on the phone and start talking.

Something else that should be quite promising is Extreme Battery Saver. If you find yourself running out of juice but need to keep your phone powered on a bit longer, you can enable this mode to extend your battery life by up to 48 hours. It’s not something you’ll want to have on all the time, but in certain instances, it could be a life-saver.

Is there a Google Pixel 5 XL?

Speaking of changes to the Pixel family, you might have noticed by now that we haven’t said anything about the Pixel 5 XL. That’s because there isn’t one 😶. While we’ve typically gotten a Pixel 4 and 4 XL, Pixel 3 and 3 XL, and so on, the regular Pixel 5 is the only entry in the entire Pixel 5 family.

As Alex Dobie explained this past September, Google seems to have gone through a few different branding decisions while creating this year’s Pixels. The phone that we have now as the Pixel 4a 5G is thought to have originally been the Pixel 5, with the Pixel 5 we’re talking about today previously referred to as the Pixel 5s — a higher-end, more premium version of what would have been the Pixel 5 but is now the Pixel 4a 5G.

You could argue that the Pixel 4a 5G is a pseudo-Pixel 5 XL given its slightly larger 6.2-inch display, but that phone sacrifices things like the 90Hz refresh rate, wireless charging, and has slightly less RAM.

What do I need to know about the Google Pixel 4a & 4a 5G?

Google Pixel 4a

Source: Andrew Martonik / Android Central

If the Pixel 5 just isn’t clicking for you, you have a couple of other Pixels to choose from. In addition to the Pixel 4a 5G mentioned above, there’s also the regular Pixel 4a. Those phones cost $499 and $349, respectively, making them more affordable alternatives if you’re looking to spend even less than what Google’s asking for the Pixel 5.

The Pixel 4a was released in August, and it’s honestly one of the best values you can get right now. It provides a thoroughly enjoyable Android experience in a device that’s super compact, all of the specs are more than good enough for the vast majority of people, and there’s no beating that price tag.

Perhaps even more interesting for some folks is that Pixel 4a 5G. If you’re OK with a 60Hz refresh rate and don’t care about wireless charging, it has a lot in common with the Pixel 5. You get the same Snapdragon 765G processor, 12.2MP + 16MP dual rear cameras, 128GB of storage, and there’s even a headphone jack.

Should I get any accessories for the Google Pixel 5?

Spigen Liquid Air Pixel 5 Case

Caseology Parallax Pixel 5 CaseSource: Spigen and Caseology

As we often say here on Android Central, no phone is complete without the right accessories. This is just as true for the Pixel 5, so make sure you grab a few things to round out your experience with the phone.

First and foremost, you should absolutely get a screen protector. The Pixel 5 is a great-looking phone, but a year or two down the road when the screen is littered with scratches, it’s going to be a lot less appealing. A screen protector is a fast and easy way to prevent this from happening, no matter if you get a film or tempered glass one.

We also recommend picking up a case for the Pixel 5. While the aluminum design sure is something, all it takes is one drop to chip its paint and ruin the experience. There are already a ton of excellent cases to choose from, whether you want something ultra-rugged or prefer style over function.

Pre-order now

Google Pixel 5

The newest Pixel has arrived

Google packed a lot into the Pixel 5, including a 90Hz OLED display, dual cameras, wireless charging, you name it. It’s also the cheapest flagship Pixel we’ve had in a long time, making it a great alternative to pricier options. Pre-orders are open now!

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The Tech Guy

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