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Google's hardware division has greatly stepped up its game in the last few years, and its Pixel lineup is now among the best Android phones on the market. That's true for both its flagship offerings and the more budget-friendly A-series devices that give users access to Google's unique flavor of Android at a much more affordable price. If you're in the market for a new phone and are thinking of picking up a Pixel, you'll be glad to know that the current crop is among the best Google Pixel phones ever, and you'll have a great experience no matter which one you pick. But if you can't make up your mind, we're here to help you choose the one that's right for you.

Our picks for the top Google Pixel phones in 2023

A render of the Pixel 7 Pro in hazel color.
Google Pixel 7 Pro
Best Google Pixel phone overall

Flagship hardware at a non-flagship price

$599 $800 Save $201

The Google Pixel 7 Pro is currently the best Google Pixel phone overall. It offers top-of-the-line hardware, including Google's in-house Tensor G2 chip, an impressive set of cameras, a high refresh rate display, and a large battery. Despite the top-notch hardware, it's significantly cheaper than competing flagships.

  • Impressive cameras
  • Great software experience with Pixel-exclusive features
  • Value for money
  • Slow charging
  • Poor gaming performance

If money is no object, the Google Pixel 7 Pro is the best Google phone you can buy right now. It fixes the main complaints we had with its predecessor — battery, thermals, and buggy software — while refining and doubling down on what was already great: camera and AI smarts. We wouldn't call the Pixel 7 Pro a huge upgrade over the Pixel 6 Pro, but the improvements and refinements it brings are welcome additions.

The Pixel 7 Pro looks identical to its predecessor from the front, featuring a big curved display and slim bezels. But turn it over, and you'll notice several changes. For one, the signature two-tone finish of the Pixel 6 Pro is gone, replaced by a more generic-looking single-color finish. And that distinct black camera bar has been replaced by a polished aluminum frame that has two cutouts for the camera lenses. The front and back are still protected by Gorilla Glass Victus, while the IP68 rating means you don't have to worry about dirt and water splashes damaging your device. Irrespective of that, we still recommend picking up a protective case for the Pixel 7 Pro to keep it scratch-free.

The device sports a gorgeous 6.7-inch AMOLED display with 3120 x 1440 or QHD+ resolution. It's a high refresh rate LTPO panel that can smoothly scale its refresh rate between 10Hz and 120Hz. It also gets brighter than the Pixel 6 Pro's panel, offering 1000 nits max brightness and 1500 nits peak brightness. On the inside, the Pixel 7 Pro packs Google's newest in-house chipset: Tensor G2. While CPU and GPU performance are similar to last year's chipset, machine learning, and camera processing tasks have received a noteworthy bump in performance.

As you would expect, the Pixel 7 Pro also gets the best camera hardware, featuring a 50MP primary shooter that's unchanged from the last model, a 48MP telephoto lens with 5x optical and 30x digital zoom, and a 12MP ultra-wide camera that also doubles as a macro lens. In addition, there are some new AI-powered photography features such as Photo Unblur, Guided Frame, and Cinematic Blur.

The 5,000mAh battery is unchanged from last year, but with Tensor G2's efficiency improvements and software optimizations, we noticed significant battery gains in our review of the Pixel 7 Pro. On the software side, the phone runs Android 13 out of the box, with Google promising three years of OS updates and five years of security updates. Other notable highlights of the Pixel 7 Pro include an improved fingerprint reader, NFC, UWB support, wireless charging support, dual-band GPS, and Bluetooth 5.2. Don't forget to take a look at our roundup of the best Pixel 7 Pro deals to save big on your purchase.

A render of the Google Pixel 7 in lemongrass color.
Google Pixel 7
Best for most people

Flagship experience at an affordable price

$349 $599 Save $250

The Google Pixel 7 is the best Pixel phone for most people. It offers the same premium experience as the much more expensive Pro model but lacks a telephoto camera and high refresh rate display and packs a smaller battery.

  • Great value
  • Impressive primary camera
  • Compact footprint
  • No telephoto camera
  • Average battery life
  • 90Hz FHD+ display

For those who do not care about the premium display and telephoto camera, the standard Pixel 7 is a better choice. It is the most balanced phone in the company's lineup, offering a great hardware package at a much lower price than the Pixel 7 Pro. The Pixel 7 follows the same design language as the Pro model but has a smaller footprint, making it a great option for those who want a compact phone.

The Pixel 7's FHD+ OLED 90Hz panel isn't as advanced as the Pixel 7 Pro, but you won't be disappointed by what it offers. It's brighter and more vibrant than the Pixel 6's panel, reaching 1400 nits of peak brightness while also offering 24-bit color and HDR support.

Should you go with the cheaper Pixel 7, you won't be compromising on performance either since it uses the same Tensor G2 chipset as the Pro model. And while you only get 8GB of RAM compared to 12GB on the Pro, we found that it didn't affect day-to-day performance in our review of the Pixel 7.

The Pixel 7's camera setup is admittedly less versatile than the Pro. It misses out on the dedicated telephoto zoom lens, updated ultra-wide camera, and Macro Focus feature. But what matters most is the main camera, and we're happy to report it has the same excellent 50MP main camera as the Pro model.

The device packs a smaller 4,335mAh battery and supports 30W wired and 20W wireless charging. Like the Pro, it runs Android 13 out of the box and will receive three years of OS updates and five years of security updates. Elsewhere, you get an in-display fingerprint scanner, Face Unlock, Bluetooth 5.2, stereo speakers, and dual-band GPS. It also gets Gorilla Glass protection, but we highly recommend getting a case for your Pixel 7 to keep it in pristine condition.

Google Pixel 6 Pro on transparent background.
Google Pixel 6 Pro
Bargain flagship

Old, but a great alternative to the Pixel 7

Although a generation old, the Google Pixel 6 Pro is still a great buy, as you can get it for the price of a new mid-range smartphone. It's a great alternative to the Pixel 7 for those who don't want to compromise on the display, battery, and telephoto camera but are fine with the older Tensor SoC.

  • High refresh rate display
  • Great camera setup
  • Big battery
  • Tensor G1 isn't great for gaming
  • Thermal issues
  • Finicky fingerprint reader

Now that the Pixel 7 Pro is in town, the Pixel 6 Pro isn't the king of the castle anymore. But the older model is still an excellent buy for those who don't want to shell out the big bucks on the Pixel 7 Pro and still want a high refresh rate display, a big battery, and a telephoto camera. It's particularly great for bargain hunters, as it offers a flagship experience for under $600.

The Pixel 6 Pro has a large 6.7-inch OLED display with QHD+ resolution and up to 120Hz refresh rate. Its brightness isn't as high as the Pixel 7 Pro but is sufficient for using the phone under direct sunlight, and you also get support for HDR10 and HDR10+ content. Since it's an LTPO display, you also get an adaptive refresh rate, meaning the display can automatically adjust the refresh rate between 10Hz to 120Hz based on the content. Both the front and back are protected by Corning's Gorilla Glass Victus, so the device is quite durable. But you should invest in a good Pixel 6 Pro case to ensure you don't scratch or break it accidentally.

Despite its age, the Pixel 6 Pro is no slouch in the camera department. It features a triple camera setup on the back consisting of a 50MP primary camera, a 48MP telephoto camera, and a 12MP ultra-wide camera. As we noted in our review of the Pixel 6 Pro, these cameras utilize Google's computational photography prowess to deliver amazing shots in most scenarios. While its camera performance won't be as great as the newer Pixel 7 Pro, the Pixel 6 Pro still has some of the best smartphone cameras on the market.

The Pixel 6 Pro packs Google's first in-house Tensor SoC. It's not as great as Qualcomm's Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 or the newer Tensor G2, but we can assure you that you won't notice any major issues with it in day-to-day use. The only thing about the Pixel 6 Pro's performance that's not so pro is gaming. The phone heats up quite a bit and throttles when put under a heavy load for a prolonged period, so you shouldn't get it if you plan on playing games on your phone.

The Pixel 6 Pro's battery life is above average at best, and its 30W fast charging is nothing to write home about when the competition is offering up to 150W speeds. But if you're not a heavy user, you can still expect the phone to provide a full-day battery life. Wireless charging support is also on board, and the phone even lets you reverse wireless charge your smartwatch or earphones at up to 5W.

As for software, Google has promised three years of Android version updates and five years of security patches on the Pixel 6 Pro. It launched with Android 12 out of the box, so it will receive OS upgrades till Android 15 and security updates till October 2026.

Google Pixel 6 on transparent background.
Google Pixel 6
Worth every penny

Flagship specs, budget-friendly price

Last year's affordable flagship, the Google Pixel 6, is still on the market, and you can snag one for well under its original retail price. Thanks to that, it's still one of the best Google Pixel phones to buy in 2023 despite its age. It features Google's first-gen Tensor SoC, an FHD+ display, great cameras, amazing software, and decent battery life.

  • Amazing software experience
  • Premium design
  • Impressive primary camera
  • Finicky fingerprint scanner
  • Not great for gaming
  • Below average thermals

The Google Pixel 6 might not be the best Pixel flagship right now, but it remains a solid option for those who want to experience the Pixel's camera prowess and software smarts at a budget-friendly price. You won't lose out much by picking up this model, as it has the same excellent 50MP main camera as the Pro variant and offers the same software experience.

The Pixel 6 features a decent 6.4-inch OLED display with an FHD+ resolution and a 90Hz refresh rate. The panel doesn't get as bright as the Pixel 6 Pro, nor does it support LTPO tech for dynamic refresh rate. But the small screen size and 1080p resolution mean the Pixel 6's display isn't a battery hog similar to the QHD+ panel of the Pixel 6 Pro. At 500 nits, the screen isn't all that bright, but it's sufficient for outdoor use.

The Pixel 6 performs similarly to the Pro model in day-to-day tasks as it's powered by the same first-gen Tensor Soc. However, it's not great for extensive gaming and will heat up under load. On the camera front, it offers the same 50MP primary shooter and 12MP ultra-wide shooter as the Pro model, allowing you to capture crisp images in most lighting conditions. However, the phone misses out on a dedicated zoom lens.

The camera on the front isn't as wide as the one on the Pixel 6 Pro and also drops the resolution to 8MP. Other than that, there's not a lot you're missing out here. You get the same software support, so the device should be good till October 2026. The battery is slightly smaller at 4600mAh, but the smaller screen and lower refresh rate mean that the battery life will be as good as the Pro, if not better.

A render of the Google Pixel 6a in Charcoal black color.
Google Pixel 6a
Most affordable

Pixel experience on a budget

If you want the Pixel experience for under $300, the Google Pixel 6a is the right option for you. It's the best Google Pixel phone you can get on a tight budget, especially since it packs the first-gen Tensor SoC. You also get decent cameras, the same software experience as other Pixel phones, and long-term software support.

  • Amazing value
  • Great software experience
  • Impressive cameras for the price segment
  • 60Hz display
  • Below average battery life
  • Thermal issues

If you don't need all the bells and whistles that come with the Google Pixel 7 or Pixel 6 series devices, you will do just fine with the budget-friendly Pixel 6a. Like previous A-series phones, the new model brings the best features of the flagship Pixels down to a more affordable price point while dropping some premium features in the process. The compromises come in the form of fewer premium materials, a downgraded display, and older camera hardware. Instead of Gorilla Glass Victus on the front, you get Gorilla Glass 3, and instead of a glass back, you get a plastic one.

The Pixel 6a sports a 6.1-inch OLED display with an FHD+ resolution that tops out at 60Hz. It's not as good as the high refresh rate panels on the other Pixel phones, but that's a compromise you'll have to make to save some money. Thankfully, it gets sufficiently bright for decent outdoor visibility and offers great color reproduction with inky blacks.

The most exciting thing about the Pixel 6a is that it uses the same first-gen Tensor SoC as the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro. But before you get too excited, note that the phone doesn't perform as well as the top models. This is because the Pixel 6a only packs 6GB of RAM and lacks the smoothness of a higher refresh rate panel. That said, the Pixel 6a performs respectably in day-to-day use. Unless you're a power user, you'll be perfectly content with the overall performance.

The camera situation for the Pixel 6a is a bit tricky. Instead of borrowing the new camera hardware from the Pixel 6 series, the affordable device packs the same old camera modules that have appeared on all previous Pixel A series phones. Despite that, the Pixel 6a captures high-quality photos that put other smartphones in this price segment to shame.

The Pixel 6a also packs a smaller 4,410mAh battery, which results in below-average battery life. However, it should still last you a full day of use on a single charge. Speaking of charging, the Pixel 6a only supports 18w wired charging, so topping off the battery will also take considerably longer. For under $300, the Pixel 6a packs a lot of value, offering a delightful mix of fantastic camera performance and a thoughtful software experience. The three-year Android OS support is the icing on the cake. But you should keep your expectations in check as it's a budget-friendly phone, unlike the other options on this list.

Best Google Pixel Phones in 2023: The bottom line

That wraps up our round-up of the best Pixel phones you can buy right now. You probably saw this coming, but the latest Google Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro are the best options currently on the market. But we chose the top-of-the-line Pixel 7 Pro as the best Google Pixel phone overall as it offers a more well-rounded package with its high-resolution 120Hz display, dedicated telephoto camera, and larger battery.

A render of the Pixel 7 Pro in hazel color.
Google Pixel 7 Pro
Best Google Pixel phone overall
$599 $800 Save $201

The Google Pixel 7 Pro is currently the best Google Pixel phone overall. It offers top-of-the-line hardware, including Google's in-house Tensor G2 chip, an impressive set of cameras, a high refresh rate display, and a large battery. Despite the top-notch hardware, it's significantly cheaper than competing flagships.

If you don't want to spend over $700 on a new phone, the Pixel 7 and Pixel 6 Pro are great alternatives. You should go with the Pixel 7 if you don't mind missing out on the telephoto camera and 120Hz display. But if you do, the Pixel 6 Pro will definitely be a better buy for you.