The Google Pixel series has long been a fan favorite, and rightfully so, as each major Pixel device is regarded as one of the best Android phones on the market. Google redesigned the Pixel lineup with the Pixel 6, a design that incorporates a camera bar on the back. This design has now been carried through multiple generations and gives the Pixel series a unique look all to itself.
However, the Pixel series is not just about its aesthetics. It brings along one of the best camera systems on the market, a clean version of Android, and a host of other smaller additions that add up to a wonderful overall experience. The release of the Pixel 6a incorporated a flagship processor, excellent camera abilities, and fantastic build quality with a lower overall price point. It reset expectations for the budget market and easily became the best budget Android device.
Google has a Pixel device at just about every price point, with each bringing excellent value, camera ability, and performance. The devices on this list are all available to purchase brand new today, and due to a variety of reasons, some are better buys than others. This guide isn't about selectively picking the best Pixel devices but about ranking them based on their performance and value in today's market.
The best Google Pixel devices today
Google Pixel 8
Best Pixel for those wanting a flagship
The Google Pixel 8 is hands down the best device for those who want a flagship product but don't want to spend a thousand dollars to get one. The Pixel 8 is an amazing device that is incredibly close in performance and features to its more expensive sibling, the Pixel 8 Pro. Its smaller size is also fantastic for those who prefer smaller devices.
- Takes amazing photos
- Snappy overall performance
- Seven years of software updates
- Can get warm when gaming
- More expensive than previous generations
- No telephoto lens
It's not unusual for the current non-pro Pixel to be rated as the best overall Pixel device, and that's for good reason. The standard Pixel offers all the flagship performance and features that you would expect out of a Pixel device, and the Google Pixel 8 is no different. It utilizes Google's Tensor G3 chipset and a new camera sensor to push the Pixel lineup to new heights.
The Tensor G3 chipset may not burn through the various benchmarks, but it is more than capable of providing a snappy experience. The new camera sensor utilizes a 50MP main lens and a 48MP ultrawide lens that takes some great shots. Daytime photos are stunning, but the new sensor really excels as the lights begin to dim. Google even extended its software support with seven years of Android and security updates. The Pixel 8 isn't for everyone, though. It lacks a telephoto lens, and its 6.2-inch display may be too small for some people.
Google Pixel 8 Pro
A Pixel that does it all — for a price
The Pixel 8 Pro is Google's premier flagship product. It comes with a large display that is beautiful to look at, a triple camera setup, and the same great seven years of software support. The caveat is, to get all of these great features, you are going to have to spend a thousand dollars or more.
- Large, bright display
- Excellent camera versatility
- Seven years of software support
- A bit pricey
- Gets a bit warm
The Google Pixel 8 Pro takes everything great about the Pixel 8 and takes it up a notch. It uses the same Tensor G3 chipset but ups the RAM from 8GB to 12GB. It also adds a 48MP telephoto camera, giving the 8 Pro a level of camera versatility that the non-pro version just can't match, which is the ability to optically zoom up to 5x and can hit 30x with Super Res Zoom.
In addition, the 8 Pro was slightly redesigned this year. Google eliminated the curved display, instead opting for a flat 6.7-inch display. The 120Hz display is plenty bright and beautiful to use on a day-to-day basis. It also gets the same fantastic seven years of software support as its smaller sibling. Like the Pixel 8, the Pixel 8 Pro saw a price increase this year, making it a thousand-dollar device that's perfect for those who need a telephoto lens and a large screen.
A flagship experience for a midrange price
The Google Pixel 7a offers so many flagship-level features that, amazingly, it retails for only $500. It's a shame that it went up by $100 compared to the 6a, but the improvements to the display and camera lenses more than justify the cost.
- Has a 90Hz display
- Fantastic image quality
- Amazing value
- Average battery life
- Most expensive A-series Pixel yet
Google's A-series of devices are very tough to beat from a value standpoint. The Pixel 7a offers flagship-level performance and robust features at a midrange price. It utilizes Google's Tensor G2 chipset and 8GB of RAM, which gives it plenty of power to get you through your day. Like all Pixel devices, it also provides brilliant photo capabilities, and it has a 64MP main lens and a 13MP ultrawide lens. While the camera may not be as capable as the Pixel 8 series, it's still one of the best Android camera phones currently on the market.
To get the price down, Google had to cut a few corners. To start, the ultrawide camera is only 13MP, and the 6.1-inch OLED display tops out at 90Hz. It also replaced the glass back with a plastic one. Still, the Pixel 7a has great build quality, and the 90Hz display feels pretty smooth when scrolling around.
The only foldable Pixel
If you love foldable phones and want all the benefits of having a Pixel device, then look no further than the Google Pixel Fold. As the only foldable device in Google's stable, this tablet-sized device does a lot right but suffers from some first-generation quirks.
- Good camera system
- Great outer camera
- Inner display doesn't hold up against the competition
- Questionable durability
If you love the idea of having a Pixel phone that can double as a tablet, the Google Pixel Fold is your default choice on this list. Powered by a Tensor G2 chipset and 12GB of RAM, the Fold can easily power you through a typical day. It has a beautiful outer 5.8-inch display; however, the Fold is let down a bit by its lackluster 7.6-inch inner display. At 0.5 inches thick, the Pixel Fold is one of the thinnest foldable phones on the market, but it's hefty at 283g.
If you aren't in desperate need of a foldable device, you may be better off skipping this for a different Pixel device. While the camera is good, it doesn't quite keep up with a device like the Pixel 8 Pro and feels very first generation. To cap it all off, this device costs a whopping $1800. This one is best left to the diehard foldable aficionados.
Google Pixel 6a
A budget shopper's dream
The Google Pixel 6a reinvented the Pixel A-series when it launched. Google flipped the script by utilizing its previously tried and true camera sensor and incorporating its then flagship Tensor chipset in this budget device. There are a few shortcomings, but at its current price, it's an absolute steal.
- Great image quality
- Decent performance from the Tensor chipset
- Amazing price
- Cellular signal can be a bit spotty
- No wireless charging
- 60Hz display
The Google Pixel 6a is for those individuals looking for the ultimate budget device. The Pixel 6a utilizes the original Tensor chipset and 6GB of RAM for a fluid and snappy experience. Google decided to stick with its tried and true camera setup from earlier Pixel generations, and thanks to its imaging prowess and the Tensor chipset, the Pixel 6a is capable of getting fantastic images. Like the Pixel 7a, Google went with a plastic back, but the build quality is still top-notch.
Due to its low retail price of only $350, you'd expect a significant amount of shortcomings. Luckily, that's not the case here. Yes, the screen tops out at 60Hz, and the camera system has been around forever, but the overall package is quite good. If you are in the market for a device that runs less than $400, the Pixel 6a is an absolute steal. Unless, of course, the Pixel 7a happens to be on sale for a similar price.
A great device if you find it on sale
The Pixel 7 was a great device when it launched in 2022, and it's still a great device for those who already own it. Unfortunately for the 7 series, multiple Pixel devices have launched since and are a better alternative than the Pixel 7.
- Snappy performance
- Great camera system
- Great build quality
- The Pixel 7a is almost identical for less
- Phone gets hot during heavy usage
- Battery life is alright
The Google Pixel 7 was and still is a great device. Its combination of performance and features was almost unheard of for $600 when it started hitting the shelves in 2022. The phone had a flagship Tensor G2 chipset, a camera system that still ranks as one of the best on the market, a 90Hz display, and fantastic build quality.
Unfortunately for the Pixel 7, it doesn't live in a bubble. Google has released various devices since the launch of the Pixel 7, which makes picking one up a bit of a head-scratcher. In comparison, the Pixel 7a is less expensive but offers an identical feature set — including the chipset, RAM, camera setup, and build quality — for $100 less. Then there is the Pixel 8, a device that has an improved camera system, a stronger processor, and a better display for $100 more. Unless you can find the Pixel 7 at a steep discount, it's probably safe to choose one of the other Pixel devices.
Google Pixel 7 Pro
Cheapest Pixel with a telephoto lens
The Pixel 7 Pro was Google's flagship product in 2022. It came with a triple camera setup, great performance, and a beautiful display. Google did make some gaffes with the 7 Pro, namely the use of a curved display, but overall, the device was fantastic.
- Snappy performance
- Great camera system
- Clean and fluid Pixel UI
- Tensor G2 can get hot when pushed
- Curved display isn't for everyone
- Battery life is a bit hit-or-miss
Much like the Pixel 7, the Pixel 7 Pro sits in a difficult position. On the one hand, the Tensor G2 chipset and 12GB of RAM are more than for day-to-day usage. In addition, the camera setup includes a telephoto lens for enhanced photo capabilities, and it can take some stunning photos. The 6.7-inch LTPO display is beautiful and fluid as well.
The main issue with the Pixel 7 Pro is its current price point. At $900, it is only $100 less than the Pixel 8 Pro. The 8 Pro gets you a newer chipset, a flat display, a new camera setup, and four additional years of Android updates. Yes, you can save a buck, especially if you can find it on sale, but the Pixel 8 Pro or even the standard Pixel 8 offers a far better value proposition.
The best Pixel is the one that fits your needs
There are a lot of similarities between all of these Pixel devices, but each one brings something unique to the table. What you will get from any of these devices is great performance from a Tensor chipset, plenty of RAM, and a great camera system.
The Pixel 8 is the overall winner here for being a complete package at a great price. You get great performance from the Tensor G3 chipset and great photos from its dual camera setup. The 8 series even bumps up software support to a full seven years of Android updates. Its pocket-friendly design, coupled with excellent build quality, round out some of the best features of the Pixel 8.
If you want a larger device and additional camera capabilities and are willing to pay for those features, the $1,000 Pixel 8 Pro will leave little to be desired. You get a fantastic triple rear camera setup, the same great performance as the Tensor G3 chipset, and a gorgeous-looking display.
If you are looking to spend a bit less, the Pixel 7a is very similar to the Pixel 8, but for $200 less. There are some tradeoffs, namely losing the newer chipset, a less fluid display, and three fewer years of Android updates. What you do get, however, is a great overall performer that takes top-of-the-line photos. No matter which Pixel device you choose, there is one that covers your specific needs.
Google Pixel 8
Powerful and seven years of software updates
The Pixel 8 offers the best blend of performance and price. You get snappy performance from the Tensor G3 chipset and a top-notch camera system. At $600, the value of the Pixel 8 doesn't disappoint. If you love smaller devices, you will be especially pleased with its pocketability.