Google has launched the new Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro. Today we got our hands on the Pixel 7 and here are our first impressions of this high-end smartphone for $599.
Google Pixel 7 release date and price
The Google Pixel 7 will be available in the US starting October 6, 2022, starting at $599. If you buy a Pixel 7 Pro by October 17, Google will offer either a Pixel Buds Pro or a Google Pixel Watch as a gift in the bundle.
The Pixel 7 falls into the category of affordable high-end smartphones. And, as always with Google smartphones, it’s a photo smartphone above all else and an Android 13 display. Its biggest advantages are the features of Google’s image processing software and the user experience of Android 13 in a clean, but very complete version (the famous Pixel special features).
The Pixel 7 uses the design language of the Pixel 6 with changes to the camera bar, with that sidebar housing the rear camera module.
I liked it.
- Aluminum frame and Gorilla Glass Victos on front and back.
- Design wise the camera bar is still cool.
- IP68 level.
- The form factor is not too heavy (but not compact).
I didn’t like it.
- Uninspired colors and a really weird lemongrass version.
- No microSD or 3.5mm jack.
The Pixel 7 ticks all the premium smartphone boxes in terms of design. We have an aluminum frame and Corning Gorilla Glass Victos on the front and back. It comes in three colors: Obsidian, Snow and Lemongrass. IP68 certified for water and dust resistance. Storage cannot be expanded via microSD. The Pixel 7 has two stereo speakers but skips the 3.5mm jack.
The biggest visual change is the camera bar. Last year’s Pixel 6 was made entirely of glass and black, giving us a pair of futuristic glasses on the back of the smartphone. On the Pixel 7, Google opted for an aluminum design that makes the camera module’s oval-shaped island stand out more. There is a small punch to the right of the camera bar for the LED flash.
Personally, I’m less of a fan of this look because it takes away from the camera bar’s cyberpunk aesthetic. But we can say that this choice of Google allows creating a contrast of color and coating to make the design on the back of the Pixel 7 more complex and interesting.
The Pixel 7’s form factor isn’t exactly compact, measuring 155.6 x 73.2 x 8.7mm and weighing 197g. It’s quite thick, but the rounded corners and reduced bezels of the 6.3-inch screen provide a better grip than last year’s Pixel 6. By the way, I’m not a big fan of the overly reflective coating on the back. I wanted to be more subtle.
The Pixel 7 has a 6.3-inch Oled display with a Full HD+ resolution of 1080 x 2400p at a 90Hz refresh rate and a maximum brightness of 1,400 nits.
I liked it.
- Good brightness on paper between 1000 and 1400 nits.
- 90 Hz refresh rate (120 Hz is a bit low for the Pixel 7 Pro).
He didn’t like it.
- Chin a little too wide at a glance.
The Pixel 7’s screen is gorgeous from a spec sheet, not to mention a little boring. The 120 Hz and LTPO technology remain only for the Pro model.
The Full HD+ OLED panel is nothing special and I find it a bit silly not to offer a 120 Hz refresh rate in 2022. But hey, I think it’s mostly psychological and I’m sure it won’t seriously affect the user experience.
The maximum brightness of 1400 nits is measured by Google on only 5% of the screen surface, so you will never find such a measurement on the entire Pixel 7 panel. The brightness in HDR mode, however, can go up to 1000 nits, which is pretty accurate on paper.
The Pixel 7’s screen is flat, but I found the chin to be slightly more prominent than the rest. I don’t know if it was just my imagination and I didn’t take the time to do some measurements. But in this price range, I want a 100% bezel-free screen. There’s a classic punch centered at the top to accommodate the selfie camera.
Google Pixel 7 runs Android 13, the latest mobile operating system from Google in its clean and full version. Google guarantees three Android updates and five years of security updates.
I liked it.
- Android 13 is uncluttered and packed with unique features.
- Fair update policy (but less than Samsung’s).
He didn’t like it.
We’ve already talked about Android 13 extensively and you can find all the information about Google’s new operating system on our Android 13 page.
With Android 12, Google has reiterated the excellent foundations laid in terms of UI design with dynamic themes to match the color of your interface to your wallpaper. A privacy dashboard, clipboard protection, and mic/camera/position indicators are still part of the package.
Google says its new Tensor G2 processor and Titan M2 chip will further strengthen the security of your Pixel 7. In fact, the manufacturer says Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro users will get Google One VPN later this year — and to protect it, for free. Regardless of the app they use, their online activities.
The Pixel 7 also offers unique Android 13 features that I’ll discuss in detail in my full review. Some of these include interactions with Google Assistant, voicemail transcription, improved call quality, but most importantly, photography.
The Pixel 7 features Google’s new SoC Tensor G2. It is supported by 128 or 256 GB of UFS 3.1 storage and 8 GB of LPDDR5 RAM.
The Tensor G2 SoC is a chip manufactured by Samsung using the 4 nm process. The GPU is a Mali-G710 and the CPU is an octacore with 2 large ARM Cortex-X1, 2 large Cortex-A76 and four small Cortex-A55. This cluster configuration is very similar to the original Tensor SoC launched in the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro last year.
The main difference, then, is the frequency of the clock tower, which is faster on the Tensor G2. The Mali-G710 GPU marks a nice step up from last year’s Mali-G78.
But I’ll have to wait until I run all my benchmarks and do some long gaming sessions before I can properly comment on the Pixel 7’s performance and overheating.
The Pixel 7 has a dual camera module on the back with a 50MP wide-angle main lens and a 12MP ultra-wide-angle lens. As for the selfie camera, it has a resolution of 10.8 MP.
The main lens includes a decent 1/1.33-inch sensor with 1.2 μm pixels and has an aperture of f/1.85. Google explains that the Pixel 7 is capable of up to x8 lossless zoom with its Super Resolution Zoom technology. The ultra-wide angle lens has an aperture of f/2.2 and offers a 114° field of view (FOV).
Google has a very Soviet communication strategy this year. The test ban prevents us from sharing photos taken with the Pixel 7 before it launches next week. So we’ll have to wait for our full test to see how the Pixel 7 fares in photos.
However, I can mention a few features of the photo app that I find really good. Starting with helping visually impaired people take great selfies. Google uses haptic feedback, reverse animations, and audio cues to guide you and help you get selfies right.
The Pixel 7 offers a feature to recreate the most blurry photos. The idea is to make blurry photos look sharper. Everything is done software-wise, based on a process that uses machine learning.
On the video side, the Pixel 7 can shoot up to 4K with the rear camera module and selfie camera at 60 FPS, which is a good thing. Google offers a movie mode similar to Apple’s Cinematic Mode.
The Pixel 7 has a 4270 to 4355 mAh battery (I know, weird). The Pixel 7 supports 20W wired fast charging, Qi wireless charging, and wireless charging.
I liked it.
- Wireless and vice versa wireless charging.
He didn’t like it.
- 30W charger not included.
- The 20W charging is anachronistic and suggestive for this price range
Google is certainly more reluctant to talk about autonomy than Apple. The separately sold charger can supply 30W. But the Pixel 7 can only charge at 20W. Like Samsung or Apple, this is too long and unworthy of a flagship that costs more than $599.
Google doesn’t say what kind of power the Pixel 7 accepts for Qi wireless charging, or what it offers for reverse wireless charging. The manufacturer guarantees a battery life of 24 hours or up to 72 hours in power saving mode. But the fact that Google explains this claim in a big paragraph in small print lets me tell you without a doubt that you won’t get any measurements in actual use.
Again, we’ll have to wait for my full test before I say more about the Pixel 7’s battery life.
|The name of the device|
|Screen||6.3-inch OLED, Full HD+ resolution, 90Hz refresh rate|
|Dimensions and weight||155.6 x 73.2 x 8.7 mm | 197 g|
|Soc||Google Tensor G2|
|Memory||8/128 GB | 8/256 GB|
|operating system||Android 13 stock.|
|Main camera||50 MP | f / 1.85 aperture | 1.2µm pixel size | PDF | OIS|
|Ultra wide angle camera||12 MP | f / 2.2 aperture | 114° FOV|
|Selfie||10.8 MP | f / 2.2 hole|
|Video||4K at 60fps max|
|Audio||2 stereo speakers|
|Battery||Between 4270 and 4355 Ma|
|Fast charging||20W wired | Wireless QI | Wireless reverse|
Summary: My first impressions
My first impression of the Google Pixel 7 is very positive. I find the $599 price tag to be very reasonable as Google is one of the few manufacturers that hasn’t increased the price this year.
I’m looking forward to trying out the new Photos app features and I know the Photo experience promises to be great. The 50MP main lens has a large sensor to capture a lot of detail, we’ll just have to see how the digital zoom performs.
I think it’s a shame that Google didn’t offer a 120Hz screen on the Pixel 7 and that the 20W wired charging is so weak. But most of the user experience for any piece of software is focused on Android 13 in a pure and complete way. A few of the Pixel’s unique features, including voicemail transcription, look interesting.
Anyway, after testing the Pixel 7 top to bottom, I’ll give you my full and final review. See you next Tuesday.
And you, what do you think of the Pixel 7? Does the price/performance ratio seem consistent to you?
Google Pixel 7
to the device database