Google Pixel 5 is a bit of an experiment by the American giant. For the first time ever, Google is not releasing a real flagship with the best components but is more focused on the final price of the product.
Talking about the price-performance ratio, the price is not even the lowest possible anyway and you may find many phones in a similar price range with better components. Why should we choose this phone then? Let’s have a look.
What’s in the box
The contains of the box are typical for Pixel phones.
- Google Pixel 5 phone
- 18W charger
- USB-C cable
- USB-A to USB-C reduction
As it has become a standard now, any basic earphones or phone case are not included.
Pixel 5 sticks to its design ideas
In terms of design, Pixel 5 is very similar to the Pixel 4a model. It has a simple look with a square camera and perhaps a slightly outdated looking fingerprint reader on the back. But that doesn’t matter, Google has never played much for beauty anyway, and the reader on its back works fast and reliably. Face recognition is not available here.
There are only 2 buttons on the side of the device for locking and volume control. The surface of the phone is slightly structured, so it can be easily gripped, and at the same time, it is not too rough.
It has long been known in the world of mobile phones that you need a glass or plastic back to be able to charge wirelessly. However, Google has been smart about this obstacle and the new Pixel 5 will be charged wirelessly via an aluminium construction – well almost. In addition to the aluminium chassis, the phone also has a small thin layer of special plastic in the middle, which the company calls as “bio-resin”.
At the same time, Google’s Pixel 5 is also dust and water-resistant according to IP68.
Not the latest processor doesn’t do much harm
As expected, Google has not equipped its new Pixel 5 mobile phone with the latest and most powerful Qualcomm Snapdragon 865+ processor, but its weaker version, the SnapDragon 765G. This is complemented by 8 GB of RAM and 128 GB of storage. The processor supports 5G connection and still handles even the most demanding modern applications.
Compared to its predecessors, who have always been among the flagships, this is a relatively large change. With this move, Google seems to be trying to make the phone more affordable, which will sell better than previous models. The processor used here is still powerful and users shouldn’t be dissatisfied with the new flagship due to insufficient performance.
Gaming using Adreno 620
The Adreno 620 graphics card is sufficient to display current games in a smooth manner. It, however, does not bring too many computing reserves, so some small stutters may happen now and then if played on high graphics settings.
We played the PUBG Mobile game during the test, which run smoothly with 30 FPS in HD settings.
The surface of the phone have not gotten over 36°C when under constant load so it didn’t feel uncomfortably warm in hands.
There is a test by BoorderGamer YouTuber playing multiple games on Pixel 5 here:
Pixel 5 screen with excellent quality
The new Pixel 5 is equipped with a 6-inch HDR+ OLED screen with a resolution of 1,080 x 2,340 pixels, a pixel density of 432 PPI and a 90Hz refresh rate. Although this is not the highest value we can find on the market, users will undoubtedly appreciate it as well as it positively reflects at the price tag.
The screen also has an Always-on function and it is protected by Gorilla Glass 6.
Photos are taken care of by a dual camera
The dual camera is located in the left-hand corner in a square shape. Like its predecessors, the primary sensor has a resolution of 12 Mpx, with f/1.7 optics, dual-pixel PDAF and Optical image stabilizer function. A new lens, not found on previous models, is an ultra-wide 16Mpx f/2.2 lens. Those lenses are not the best the market can offer, but the result photos should be really satisfactory.
Of course, the ability to shoot videos in 4K is not missing, at up to 60 FPS, which is another improved feature for Google phones. Full HD video can be recorded up to 240 FPS. A selfie camera with a resolution of 8 Mpx can be found in the cutout in the upper left corner of the display.
The Dxomark.com tested the camera resulting in a score of 120 points. The same score was also achieved by Samsung Galaxy Note20 Ultra 5G.
Pixel 5 also comes with an enhanced HDR+ function for intelligent image enhancement. What Google cared about this time was improving video capture. Not only they increased the FPS when shooting in 4K, but they also added 3 new types of optical stabilization: active, locked and cinematic pan (slows down camera panning like in a movie), available for both cameras.
The new Pixel 5 also automatically adjusts to bad light conditions, changing into night mode, with which it will still succeed to take surprisingly good pictures.
Pixel 5 has an increased battery capacity
The big problem of the new Pixel 5 predecessor was a low battery capacity causing a short battery life. However, Pixel 5’s battery got a capacity of 4,080 mAh, which is an increase of more than 1,000 mAh compared to Pixel 4.
The adaptive battery feature saves energy on the applications that the user uses the least. The phone should last longer and in the super power-saving mode, Google promises that in the event of the greatest emergency, it will last up to 48 hours on a single charge in this mode.
As mentioned before, the new model also has the option of wireless and 18W fast charging.
It takes about 2 hours to recharge the phone completely with the included 18 Watt charger.
Pixel 5 now also have a truly amazing option of Reverse wireless charging, so that, for example, headphones or other devices that support Qi wireless charging can be charged by placing them on the phone.
Pixel 5 got some interesting features
Google has also added some new features to its new Pixel 5. This is, for example, a special Titan M Chip, which ensures the security of the operating system. It is a more advanced version of a hardware module, used mainly in data centres, adapted for mobile phones. This chip ensures that the phone only boots with a validated system and checks each boot layer. The user does not have to worry about sensitive data such as passwords or personal data.
Your phone also protects you from viruses and hackers, as your phone scans itself (and its own commands) every day.
Another interesting feature is an accident detection. If a traffic accident occurs to the user, Pixel 5 recognizes it and automatically dials an emergency call.
5G and eSIM
The Pixel 5 offers a slot for a Nano-SIM card and supports WiFi Calling (as long as the service provider also supports this). In addition, you can activate an eSIM. With 4G, both of the SIMs can work at the same time, but for 5G one of them must be deactivated.
Pixel 5 might be a dissapointment for those who were waiting for a super flag ship. It is available only wih 128GB storage, 2 colours and 1 size. It cannot overtake other flagships in both perfomance or photographic ability and hand to heart, even design is not exceptional in any way. With all these cons, it make the phone a bit dull.
This all is a result of getting the price as low as possible. There are many step-backs from being a first-class flagship but if we take a look at this from a different point of view, we might have a solid upper-middle class phone here.
With prices of $699 / £599 / AU$999, the Pixel 5 has a wide range of good functions including great camera, wireless charging, IP68 resistance, 5G as well as long battery life and at least 3 years of guaranteed software updates and security patches directly from Google.
If you can get over the quite limited storage, not so good stereo output and not having the latest super tech features you will find a well-balanced phone that offers a little bit of everything.
- Long battery life
- Metal body
- Clean Android interface
- Wireless charging
- Smaller size
- No ‘wow’ factor
- Lower speaker perfomance
- Limited storage with no MicroSD card slot