When it comes to Google Pixel 7 e Google Pixel 7 Pro, the discussion goes far beyond the display, the hardware, the cameras. Because ok, the brand's new smartphones arrive in our market at the same time as other countries in the world (alleluja), they are animated by the new Tensor G2, they profoundly improve the hardware / software interaction, with them the "grain" of the Google camera is reborn and are made from premium materials. But this is not the point.
Because in a historical moment in which the price of anything is skyrocketing and the brands in the world of mobile telephony have tried to follow the trend by selling mid-range "disguised" from top to prices reaching 900 euros and top of the range "transvestites" from ultra-premium phones with prices exceeding 1300 euros, there is one and only brand that has been able to create a real flaw in the market, totally ignoring the road that practically all other brands have taken: Google Pixel 7 costs 649 euros, Google Pixel 7 Pro costs 899 euros. And believe me, this choice will shake users so much that it will move masses of enthusiasts to Mountain View smartphones.
In short, after the success of the Pixel 6 series obtained in the United States, Google wants to try to grow also in other areas of the world, and it does so with those that are the maximum expression of what you can have in the Android world thanks to the integration of software and hardware born in Google's home .
But in Italy it does it a little in the middle: unfortunately, unlike what happens for example in Germany, in the Bel Paese there is no launch promotion, also because the long-awaited Pixel Watch is not yet planned for us. Sin.
Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro review: why all brands should do like Google
Design and materials
The design of the new Google smartphones changes slightly compared to the previous generation, but not drastically since the Mountain View designers have now managed to create a very clear distinctive trait, especially in the area of the bump chamber.
In reality, the points in common between the two models are several, starting with the Gorilla Glass Victus coating up to the shape of the bump chamber and the recycled aluminum body: the frame is actually a monobloc which then also covers the bump chamber, in Google Pixel 7 is satin while in Google Pixel 7 Pro it's shiny. Personally I prefer the choice made in the larger of the two, also because in the new gray / green color it has a much more "premium" visual effect but, you know, in these cases personal tastes come into play.
Both smartphones have rounded rear edges, which makes the general grip of the devices very good, and they differ in the front area: Pixel 7Pro has a 6.7 ”curved edge screen, while That of the Pixel 7 it is flat and has a 6.3 ”diagonal. And if the bezels of the largest seem deeply more optimized, I am of the opinion that on the flat panel those from Google should have made an extra effort in reducing the thickness of the lower chin, in my opinion a little too marked.
For the rest, the two smartphones are practically identical. The keys for volume control and switching on the device are on the right side, and are easily accessible, below there is the input for the USB-C, next to which we find one of the two speakers.
In short, even if at a glance they may seem identical to the previous generation, in reality as soon as you hold the devices you realize that the design and materials are very different from those seen in the Pixel 6 series: they are much more refined and have a better touch and feel.
Displays are one of the most important differences between Google Pixel 7 e Google Pixel 7 Pro. The Pixel 7's display is a 6,3-inch FullHD + OLED in 20: 9, supports HDR10 +, the refresh rate reaches 90 Hz and is not LTPO. The declared peak brightness is 1400 nits, poco below the Pixel 7 Pro, actually putting them side by side there is a big difference despite the 1500 nits peak of the 120-inch AMOLED LTPO display at 6,7 Hz with QHD + resolution (1440 x 3120 pixels) that we find in the plus variant great.
And without getting too technical, the point is this: One of the problems with last year's Pixel 6 and 6 Pro screens was brightness in direct light, which was fixed with the Google Pixel 7 e Google Pixel 7 Pro.
What has not changed, however, is the blue shift problem in the panel of the smaller version, in which blue and red reflections are shown when the viewing angle is not perpendicular to the panel which ok, is less visible than what we found. 'last year on the pixel 6, but it is still present.
In any case, these are excellent displays, even if that of the Pro variant has an extra gear. In the larger model the curvature of the edges has been slightly reduced, but the always-on is always supported, and the balancing of the panel is done in a workmanlike manner.
Hardware and Performance
The most important news of Google Pixel 7 e Google Pixel 7 Pro is the new Tensor (G2), the second generation of the SoC created in collaboration with Samsung and designed specifically for Google smartphones. The production process does not change, which remains at 5 nm, the two prime X1 cores have not changed, while in the new version of the Google SoC the two intermediate cores are based on Cortex A78 instead of A76 and a new TPU has been used. more powerful. What seems to have taken a step backwards is the GPU, which has been scaled down from the Mali G78 to 20 Cores to the Mali G71 to 7 cores.
In a nutshell, Google's processor remains one of SoCs here that do not aim so much at bare and raw performance, but at the optimization of machine learning processes and the management of the part relating to the camera which, as we will see, in the new Pixels is enriched with some very interesting features.
Technicalities aside, the performance in everyday use is top of the range in all respects, and there will be nothing that cannot be asked to do to the two new Pixels, also thanks to the presence of 12 GB of RAM and use of internal UFS 3.1 memories.
However, there is one thing to consider: Google Pixel 7 e Google Pixel 7 Pro they are not smartphones to buy if you just want to play. And they are not because actually this downsizing of the GPU is also felt in the benchmarks which, among other things, the brand does not seem to want to be performed on new smartphones: through the Play Store it is not possible to install any app for performance testing, and even installing APKs manually, some tests are blocked by the system.
However, I managed to perform the two most important tests to be able to numerically frame the performance of the Tensor (G2) and try to interpret its management. The technical differences between the two generations of Tensor translate into at least similar performance compared to the Pixel 6 with the latest update, but rather fluctuating benchmark results compared to last year's smartphones, especially when it comes to GPUs.
Comparing the 1040 points in Single-Core and the 3208 points in Multi-Core obtained by the Pixel 7Pro on GeekBench with the 882 points in Single-Core and the 2729 points in Multi-Core obtained by the 6 Pro, we realize that in terms of raw power of the SoC, the steps forward made with the Tensor (G2) are important, and so far nothing new.
But the downsizing of the GPU is felt in everything related to 3D, and you can see it from the 4380 points obtained by the Pixel 7Pro in the Vulcan test, deeply lower than the 7167 points obtained in the same test by the 6 Pro. In a nutshell, it is as if Google had decided to focus less on 3D hardware processing and GPU, focusing everything on the CPU and machine learning. Which led to better temperature management, due in turn to a decidedly different core frequency management compared to what we saw in the previous generation.
And this can be seen from the AnTuTu stress test chart, where in the Pixel 7Pro a tendency towards the conservativeness of the operating frequencies of the individual cores and the relative performances has been highlighted, in which it is as if the system frees all the power of the SoC only when strictly necessary. The concept actually makes sense but only time will tell if the path taken by Google is the right one: in my opinion the brand is simply demonstrating that the neural processing part is becoming more important than what is the classic GPU / GPU pair. . The fact is that in this way the autonomy earns at least 10% more than what happened last year, with the same battery capacity.
Now, returning to more "human" topics, assuming that all these differences I mentioned are mostly found only in the benchmarks and not in everyday use, the audio in the capsule Google Pixel 7 e Google Pixel 7 Pro is first in class, as is connectivity to WiFi 6E networks and stereo audio. The haptic feedback system is excellent which in this generation has improved a lot, the reception of the cellular signal is good but not very well: with a Vodafone sim I had no problem, but with the Iliad sim instead it seemed a bit subdued.
Much, much better is the fingerprint sensor integrated under the screen which is much faster than last year but which, let's face it, is still a bit subdued compared to its competitors, and the new unlocking system is excellent. with the face that takes advantage of the machine learning of the new Google processor but with which, unfortunately, it is only possible to unlock the device and not the authentication of applications such as banking.
As for cameras, the same goes for the processor. On paper, the updates introduced by Google Pixel 7 e Google Pixel 7 Pro they seem almost nothing, but in reality the differences are many. From the hardware point of view Google Pixel 7 e Google Pixel 7 Pro they use the same 50-megapixel f / 1.85 main camera we saw in the previous generation and the 12-megapixel ultrawide is also virtually identical, although in the Pro variant it features autofocus and can take macro photographs. The Pixel 7Pro then, it has a periscopic telephoto lens that goes from a 4x magnification of last year to a 5x, but the sensor remains the same from 48 megapixels. Previously, however, Pixel 7 earns the same 10.8 megapixel camera that was used in the Pixel 6 Pro and the Pixel 7 Pro.
And this and how much, but look at these two photographs taken at the same moment with the main camera of the Pixel 6 Pro and with that of the Pixel 7Pro.
Although the two images were taken by two smartphones with a practically identical sensor and optics, the differences in terms of image rendering, color balance and dark tones are evident.
And you notice it above all by making a rather thorough crop: regardless of the fact that the photographs taken with the Pixel 7Pro are much more realistic in terms of saturation and hue, the images taken with the new generation of the smartphone from Google are characterized by a better management of chiaroscuro and for an HDR in general even better than that (already excellent) that characterizes the photos taken with the Pixel 6 Pro.
So how is this tangible difference possible despite the fact that sensor and optics are the same? The answer has a name: Tensor (G2). Because it is precisely in the camera application that Google's new SoC flexes its muscles and (almost) always proves to be able to guarantee better processing related to computational photography which, among other things, is also faster than the first generation of the processor.
However, with the exception of the periscopic 5x zoom of the Pixel 7Pro which is probably by now qualitatively able to even compete with that seen in the S22 Ultra, in general the photographic performance of Google Pixel 7 e Google Pixel 7 Pro they are the same when using the other two lenses: with these smartphones you can take fantastic photographs that remind us of the reason why every year Google devices are crowned as the kings of smartphone photography.
Furthermore, with the Tensor (G2), Google has also introduced interesting improvements in the 2x zoom, which with the new smartphones is no longer a "digital zoom" but thanks to the sensor and the processing power of the processor, it performs a real clipping of the images captured by optics. The results are noticeably better and are on par with the 2x crop mode that Apple introduced with the new iPhones 14. And it's a feature that has also been used in the periscope zoom of the Pixel 7Pro: when you go to 10x a digital zoom is not performed, but a crop of the sensor pixels. It will seem the same to you, but in reality the concept is very different.
Excellent performance even at night which, between the two devices, are practically the same when using the two optics. In Google Pixel 7 e Google Pixel 7 Pro the shots at night are now much faster and you can change the exposure time, which is completely impossible with the previous generation. In a nutshell, Google has led the way with night mode but in recent years it was starting to lose that advantage over other brands, such as Apple and Samsung, but now the brand has set the record straight again.
Also from the video point of view there are some innovations possible thanks to the new Tensor (G2). Google Pixel 7 e Google Pixel 7 Pro they can now record cinematic videos with the Cinematic Blur mode which does its job well, but which is still limited to 1080p as a resolution and still requires some optimization work especially with complex subjects or in low light conditions.
Then there is also the Photo Blur function which is not actually a function of the camera, but which in a nutshell identifies the blurred images and uses machine learning to offer a sharper version: it is done through Google Photos, and it is also possible to improve the photos not taken with a Pixel.
Google Pixel 7 e Google Pixel 7 Pro Obviously they arrive on the market with Android 13, all customized by the Pixel experience which, in the end, is practically a stock version of Android but with some little more features. There are Android themes, the ability to transcribe messages and calls in real time, add subtitles already translated in playback and have all the potential of Google Translate in virtually any application that is run.
The Now Playing function continues to be present which will show on the lock screen in real time any song that is playing in the environment in which you are and, in short, all these goodies together with the fact that you clearly notice how much the software works hand in hand with the hardware, make the Pixel experience the most pleasant and immediate in the Android world in my opinion.
The system as a whole is very fluid, there is never a lag, and then it is important to remember that the Pixels are among the smartphones that update most quickly to new versions of the operating system, and for the greatest number of years.
Battery autonomy and charging
There is no news regarding the batteries of Google Pixel 7 e Google Pixel 7 Pro: the smallest has a 4355mAh, while the largest has a 5000mAh. The novelty, however, lies in the Tensor (G2) which is actually able to guarantee an increase in autonomy ranging from 5 to 10%, based on the uses that are made and whether or not the always on is activated.
And let's get to the numbers: with Pixel 7 I managed to get about 6 hours of active display and, strange but true, more or less the performance is similar on the Pixel 7Pro but it must be considered that the screen is larger, brighter and has a refresh rate of 120 Hz unlike the 90 Hz of the smoother version. All in all this is a decent autonomy, which could improve over time thanks to the adaptive battery function, but which does not actually represent a record in the market.
Too bad for charging, which in both smartphones reaches 30 watts via cable and 23 watts wirelessly. And in both cases I would say that Google Pixel 7 e Google Pixel 7 Pro they reach sufficiency, even if the world has gone a long way in terms of fast charging technologies and Google (like Apple and Samsung) could do something more.
Price and conclusions
The selling price of Google Pixel 7 e Google Pixel 7 Pro it is 649,00 euros and 899,00 euros respectively for versions with 128 Gb of internal memory. Anyone who needs double the memory will have to add 100 euros to each of the models. And returning to the speech made at the beginning, there is no doubt that these are figures that are now associated with products that cost more but that give absolutely less.
Pixel 7 is on par if not superior to those mid-range that want to sell themselves as top and cost around 800-900 euros, while Pixel 7Pro it has nothing to envy to the ultra-premium ones that are sold for well over 1000 euros.
In short, they are mature smartphones, improved where it was needed compared to the previous generation and which cost as much as last year despite the inflation of these times. And again, it's a "little miracle" that only Google could do.
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