The release of Google’s latest Pixel phone was an extended affair after being shown off at Google I/O in May, effectively beating leakers to the punch. We had to wait until last week for full details of the phone, and the story of the Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro is more now about their custom Tensor silicon and the features it can enable. 

The move to the custom Tensor processors also came at a time when Google positioned the Pixel line as flagships and the Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro are no different, selling from $999 and $1,299 respectively.

The two phones share a similar design with 100% recycled Aluminium chassis and that distinctive horizontal camera bar, but specs under the hood differ slightly. The Pixel 7 Pro offers the most with an additional camera sensor including up to 5x optical zoom and access to Macro Focus mode, a larger LTPO display with up to 120Hz refresh rate and 12GB RAM.

Pixel 7Pixel 7 Pro
Display6.1-inch OLED FHD+ (1080 x 2400) OLED at 416 ppi20:9 aspect ratioup to 90 HzScratch-resistant Corning Gorilla Glass Victus cover glassUp to 1000 nits (HDR) and up to 1400 nits (peak brightness)6.7-inch OLEDQHD+ (1440 x 3120) LTPO OLED at 512 ppi19.5:9 aspect ratioUp to 120HzScratch-resistant Corning Gorilla Glass Victus cover glassUp to 1000 nits (HDR) and up to 1500 nits (peak brightness)
ProcessorTensor G2Tensor G2
Storage128GB/256GB UFS 3.1 storage128GB/256GB/512GB UFS 3.1 storage
Battery & ChargingTypical 4355 mAh
Wired: up to 30W
Wireless: up to 21W
Reverse Wireless charging
Typical 5000 mAh
Wired: up to 30W
Wireless: up to 23W
Reverse Wireless charging
DesignEdgeless Corning Gorilla Glass Victus back with polished aluminium frameFingerprint-resistant coatingIP68 dust and water resistanceEdgeless Corning Gorilla Glass Victus back with polished aluminium frameFingerprint-resistant coatingIP68 dust and water resistance
SecurityTitan M2 security chipFingerprint Scanner (In-display)Face UnlockTitan M2 security chipFingerprint Scanner (In-display)Face Unlock
Rear Camera50 MP Octa PD Quad Bayer wide cameraƒ/1.85 apertureLDAF (laser detect auto-focus) sensorOptical and electronic image stabilisation82° field of view1.2 μm pixel width 12 MP ultrawide cameraƒ/2.2 aperture114° field of view1.25 μm pixel widthLens correction50 MP Octa PD Quad Bayer wide cameraƒ/1.85 apertureLDAF (laser detect auto-focus) sensorOptical and electronic image stabilisation82° field of view1.2 μm pixel width  12 MP ultrawide camera with auto-focusƒ/2.2 aperture125.8° field of view1.25 μm pixel widthLens correction
48 MP Quad Bayer PD telephoto cameraƒ/3.5 aperture20.6° field of view0.7 μm pixel width5x optical zoomSuper Res Zoom up to 30x
Front Camera10.8 MPƒ/2.2 apertureFixed focus92.8° ultrawide field of view1.22 μm pixel width10.8 MPƒ/2.2 apertureFixed focus92.8° ultrawide field of view1.22 μm pixel width
AudioStereo speakers
3 microphones
Noise suppression
Stereo speakers
3 microphones
Noise suppression
OSAndroid 13Android 13

I took a look at the Pixel 6 last year, while Scott checked out the Pixel 6 Pro. We’ve reversed that this year, with Scott checking out the Pixel 7 and I’ll be checking out the Pixel 7 Pro. 

I spent a full week with the Pixel 7 Pro and here’s how it went.

Hardware and Design

For fans of the Pixel 6 series, there’s only minor changes to the design since last year. Google has opted to cover most of the camera bar in aluminium – which is 100% recycled – and slightly refined the bump which has a gentler slope up from the sides – but that camera bar still has a solid right angle which can gather dust, lint or any other ephemera in your pocket or bag if you don’t use a case. I’ve been using the Pixel 7 Pro official case, which has kept it relatively clean though.

Dimensions wise, there’s minimal differences between the Pixel 6 Pro and Pixel 7 Pro, and it retains the same setup for power and volume buttons on the right which can be a little fiddly for one-handed use. The buttons do have a satisfying click still, so you can definitely feel when they’re pressed. I will again lament the loss of the ‘Colour pop’ on the power button that early Pixel models had, but it seems Google have left this design flair behind for good.

The speaker and USB-C port (USB 3.2) placement are the same on the bottom and SIM card tray location is on the left. It’s a single SIM device, but can also support eSIM, so that expands the options.

The speaker works as part of a pair, with stereo speakers offering quite a good amount of sound with a crisp quality in the mid-range though, as usual, the bass is lacking. There are three microphones on board, all of which are used to feed data to the AI which provides ‘Clear Calling’ automatically removing background noise from calls. It’s one of the best developments for the phone side of things I’ve seen in a long time with phone calls now a lot easier to hear.

The Pixel 7 Pro comes in three colour choices for the glass rear: Snow (White), Obsidian (Black) and Hazel. While the review unit sent out looks great in Snow, I honestly lust after the Hazel with its slightly darker tones with copper look on the camera bar. Unfortunately it appears Google only offers the Hazel with 128GB of on-board storage, with the Obsidian the only model able to give 512GB of storage which is a slight disappointment.

The glass rear is again covered in Corning Gorilla Glass Victus and it’s a fingerprint magnet, though it’s not as noticeable in white as it would be in black, it’s also slippery to hold. There’s IP68 dust/water protection included so you should be covered for everyday knocks and bumps – but again, I used the official Pixel case with this unit while reviewing it. The case fits well, though is a little slick for my liking (Bring back the fabric cases!).

Performance – Tensor G2

There’s been some improvements in the hardware though, with the new Tensor G2 processor offering an on-board Tensor Processing Unit and it now uses the 4nm manufacturing process – although it also does use some 5nm processes that the Tensor G1 was built on, though Google has advised this still makes for improvements in performance ance and power. 

That is the story of the Pixel 7 series though, the new Tensor G2 and what it can enable for users. Google spruiks a number of feature and performance improvements ranging from battery saving, pro level photo and video features including Cinematic Blur, Macro Focus and Super Res Zoom, as well as better performance in gaming and features like instant translation and speech recognition allowing for instant dictation. 

In terms of performance, the Tensor G2 runs the phone side of things well. Tensor G1 had very few issues, though did end up getting a little warm over time after extended use. I haven’t noticed any of the additional warmth this year, 

Google has again offered similar storage and RAM as last year – 12GB LPDDR5 and options from 128GB to 512GB UFS 3.1 storage depending on which colour phone you want. 

The Pixel 7 Pro also brings both mmWave and Sub-6GHz 5G, while the Pixel 7 only includes mmWave 5G. Sub-6GHz is only still available in limited areas, so it’s not an overly bad thing at this stage, but may become more of an issue in the coming years as 5G rollouts continue. 

The 5G and 4G speed tests are decent, even with a limited connection – though obviously tests will differ based on your situation and 5G in your area.


The Pixel 7 Pro comes with a 6.7-inch QHD+ (1440 x 3120) resolution OLED display. The OLED panel uses LTPO (low-temperature polycrystalline oxide) which is designed to work well with variable refresh rates. Interestingly, the Pixel 7 Pro is set to 1080p to start with, but you can set it to use the full QHD resolution in settings. There is a caveat that using the more pixel dense QHD setting will use more battery, so it’s up to you.

The Pixel 7 Pro display is excellent overall. The display colours are accurate and it’s also extremely bright, offering up to 1500 nits peak brightness which means viewing the display in bright daylight is extremely easy. 

LIke it’s predecessor, the Pixel 7 Pro does come with a curved display, though it’s not as pronounced and it works better making it less susceptible to phantom touches. That said, I still want a flat display as the aluminium frame still presents a ridge where it meets the curved display and just feels a little off when swiping.

Google have again used an in-display fingerprint sensor and it’s decently fast, showing improvements in accuracy and speed over the lacklustre performance from last years Pixel. 

Battery and Charging

There’s a 5,000mAh battery in the Pixel 7 Pro, with support for up to 23W wired and wireless charging – if you use the Pixel 30W charger or Pixel Stand 2 wireless charger.

Of course, like most phones these days, there’s no actual charger included in the box. Instead you’ll need to use an older USB Type C charger, or purchase the 30W USB-C charger from the Google Store for $45 or the Pixel Stand 2 which gives you wireless charging AND a 30W USB-C charger for $119.

The Pixel 7 Pro will charge well on either wired or wireless charging. I used the 30W Pixel charger and Pixel Stand 2 with a 50% charge in around 30 minutes.

You’ll get a full day of use out of the Pixel 7 Pro, my typical day starts at 6am and runs through to until 7-8pm at night and the Pixel 7 Pro was able to last through with no issues.


The Pixel 7 Pro includes a similar camera setup to last year with a 50MP main sensor, 12MP Ultra-Wide and a 48MP sensor for Telephoto, though Google has moved from a 4x to a 5x optical zoom though this year – and that’s before getting to the Super Res Zoom improvements in software.

The photos from the Pixel 7 are excellent. There’s no doubt that the Pixel line has offered one of the best camera systems on the market, and the Pixel 7 continues this tradition.

In great lighting, the Pixel 7 delivers phenomenal pictures and Night Sight means you get even better photos in low-light than ever before. There are improvements to the speed that Night Sight captures images, as well as some new features, but first up, here are some of the great shots from the Pixel camera.

Photo Features

In terms of features, all your old favourites from the Pixel 6 return including Magic Erase, Real Tone to capture all skin tones accurately, as well as the Long Exposure and Action Pan options for adding motion to your picutres. There are some new ones to check out though.

Between the Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro, only one feature is really limited: Macro Focus. The Pixel 7 Pro includes a Macro function, which automatically enables as you move closer to the target – as close as 3cm away. When enabled it shows up in the camera UI advising

A new feature enabled by the Pixel 7 is Photo Unblur, a feature that lets you grab any photo in your storage – even if it wasn’t taken on a Pixel 7 – and apply the Google Pixel unblur algorithm. My findings on this have been hit and miss, though I was somewhat hampered by a lack of blurry photos as I generally delete these. That said, the few I found taken on older phones did have some good results when the Unblur option was applied.

One feature that’s semi-exclusive to the Pixel 7 Pro is the telephoto + Super Res Zoom. The Pixel 7 Pro includes a 5x optical zoom, but Google is also applying their Super Res ZOom algorithm to photos to improve the end result.

When zooming, the Pixel 7 Pro will combine an image from the Wide and Telephoto cameras into a sharp and detailed image. The Super Res Zoom also works beyond the 5x optical limit of the telephoto, all the way up to 30x. It’s a decent looking image going from Ultra-Wide up to 5x with the optical zoom and even looks good when going beyond and using the Super Res Zoom.


Google has been working on improving their video capabilities for years and this year, it seems to have worked this year, or at least been vastly improved. The video is clearer and smoother, and the new stabilisation features seem to work quite well. There’s also a feature called Cinematic Blur which creates a cinematic effect by blurring the background behind your subject.

1st is Standard, 2nd half is Active Stabilisation for Heavy Movement

The UI in the Camera app makes it very easy to switch between the various types of stabilisation.


Android + Updates

The Pixel 7 Pro runs Android 13 with the Pixel Launcher on board. It’s not exactly stock Android, but instead it’s infused with all the features that Google wants to highlight – and frankly that’s part of the reasons to buy a Pixel phone.

Out of the box there was an Over-The-Air (OTA) update waiting to download bringing the phone up to a more recent security patch. Google has advised the phone will get ‘Five years of Pixel updates’ though the Google Store fine print reveals this is 5 years of security updates, whereas the feature updates are more likely to be 3 years.

The security updates will arrive monthly, and include what Google has termed ‘Pixel Drops’, which include feature updates for the phone alongside the security fixes. These drops have added in a number of interesting features over the years, and Google has hinted at a few to come.


Software features on the Pixel phones are powered by the new Tensor G2, but while a few will remain exclusive, there will be rollouts to older Pixel devices. These things range from Quick Phrases (introduced last year) which let you perform tasks like answer or decline calls, or silence alarms with Google Assistant without using the ‘Hey Google’ key word first, 

Scott and I were both struck with both the speed and accuracy of the Assistant Voice typing when Google introduced it last year. It’s still just as fast and instant, but it’s now available in three more languages: Spanish, French and Italian. There’s also a new feature for English language users as well with Emoji suggestions now showing up in the top row of your keyboard. It’s a neat feature which I use a lot, especially as it lets me use Emoji without knowing the name, for example ‘Excited Emoji’ with the appropriate emoji showing as a suggestion.

Another software feature is the new Face Unlock option, complementing the in-display fingerprint sensor. Unlike the Pixel 4 which used an Infra-Red based hardware solution for Face Unlock, Google is using the Titan M2 security chip and Tensor to map your face and ensure it’s a live model rather than a photo. It’s not secure enough to use for payments or signing into apps, but it’s good enough to unlock the phone – that said, I’ll stick with the fingerprint sensor for my personal use.

A favourite feature of mine from the Pixel line is the Recorder app. Recorder offers an audio recorder with built-in transcription capabilities that’s scarily good. Google is going to update the transcription capabilities as part of their Pixel Drops most likely offering transcriptions broken up by colour code to show different people speaking – it’s a feature I can’t wait to use at the next meeting which needs me to act as scribe.

More mainstream is the ‘At a Glance Widget’ which already shows a lot of contextual information, but is getting some Pixel 7 updates. Google says that the Pixel 7 series will soon see Daily weather forecast which includes Precipitation alerts, Package delivery update from Nest doorbell and Flight landing card with baggage belt info. Not a bad update, when it arrives.

Overall, the story of the Pixel 7 is one of refined Android feature updates, and camera improvements empowered by the Tensor G2 processor. You’ll get also get the peace of mind that prompt security updates for 5 years brings, although you do only get feature updates for three years. 

Should you buy this phone?

If you’re at all interested in Android and want to keep on the cutting edge of what it can do, the Pixel 7 or Pixel 7 Pro are the best phones to buy.

The Pixel 7 Pro offers a few hardware, as well as feature benefits over the Pixel 7 including a larger, higher resolution and refresh display, additional camera sensor with telephoto zoom and larger battery. Feature wise, the Macro Focus option in the camera is a fun addition, though the zoom lens is far more useful to most people on a daily basis. 

Google’s speed at delivering updates to the Pixel phones is also a benefit, as are the Pixel Drops which promise to enhance the Pixel phone experience even further as they arrive.

At $1,299 the Pixel 7 Pro offers a LOT of phone for the hardware, and even if you’re not sold on the Tensor G2 processor, it still offers some of the best digital photography you