Why I returned the Google Pixel 3a

Tech

I used the Google Pixel for just under a week but in the end I decided to return it within my return window. I wanted to share my thoughts about why I did this. I really feel that even in a week I’ve got a new appreciation for iOS but I’m also more conscious of what’s missing from it. Ultimately spending almost £500 on a device plus accessories when it would be used maybe 20% of the time felt wasteful in this day and age and I feel better having given it a try. Here are few of my feelings:

  • Android isn’t for me, full time at least. I liked the novelty of using another OS but for me it was the nagging that I couldn’t get under control. Even though I turned off everything I could find I was still getting asked to share my location or tune another setting. For someone like me it’s just too many options and I want to just use my iPhone to get things done.
  • Assistant vs Siri isn’t even a competition and I’ll miss it. I’m not the biggest fan of Siri anyway but now I seen how the other half live I’m jealous of some of the things you can get the assistant to do for you. Even more so the way it understood everything I asked of it, Siri has about a 50% success rate for me on iOS.
  • Third party app ecosystem for me works better on iOS. I’ve come to really like apps like Bear, GoodTask and Halide. When I used Android I found myself not really enjoying browsing the Play Store and used Google apps instead.
  • After playing more with RAW and editing my images I realised that the XS (for me) took better images. The Pixel 3a takes a great shot without editing for my eyes but with editing I preferred the XS images.

Now my tech fund is back and iOS 13 is coming I may be putting it towards an iPad Pro 12.9” soon…

Google Pixel 3a case review

Review

I’m not a huge fan of cases but the fabric finish of the official Google case hooked me in.

I picked up two colors

  • Fog
  • Seascape

Unboxing these is fine, good to see the packing almost all recycling friendly.

The inside of the case is soft microfiber that will keep your Pixel in top condition.

We then have plastic buttons with the same colour accents as the phones.

There are cutouts for the camera and fingerprint reader.

The only downside with this case is that hole for the fingerprint reader. It’s actually deeper than it needs to be and not big enough. I’ve come to like swiping down on the reader to show notifications. This is tricky with the case on. It’s also not so comfortable to unlock.

For £35 it’s not a bad price for these cases, I really like the fabric finish and maybe it’ll soften over time. It’s going to offer drop protection and protect the screen as it has a raised lip on the front.

Pixel 3a vs iPhone XS indoor photography comparison

Photography, Tech

Now I have the Pixel 3a in hand my main driver is photography so expect to see a few posts this week just covering my views on the Pixel. I’ve wanted to try one for ages but now I can get one for under 400 pounds it was a good opportunity to jump on board.

For these shots I used a range of zoom ranges and speaking of zoom I’ve really missed the 2x zoom from the XS and had to resort to digital zoom on the Pixel. I found that if I wanted something closer it would ask me to go back a bit to focus. Any edits I.e. crops were done with Google Photos.

Pixel 3a

IPhone XS

Pixel 3a

IPhone XS

Pixel 3a

IPhone XS

Pixel 3a

IPhone XS

Overall I’ve been impressed with the Pixel in these shots against the XS. I’ve missed the 2x zoom and that’s why some of the images from the XS to my eyes are clearer. For the money this Pixel has an amazing camera and isn’t 600 pound inferior to the iPhone.