While we weren’t the first to get our hands on the Google Pixel 5 for review, the saying better late than never applies here. It took us a couple of weeks to get our actual review set out because, in Canada, things just take longer to get to us.
Google Pixel 5 is the company’s successor to Pixel 4 and 4A. This device comes in with a more modest price of $799CAD, which comparatively is more competitive than previous generations of Pixels. This price, however, doesn’t give a lot of flagship features with a more budget price.
The phone features a 4080mAh battery, 8GB of RAM, 128GB of storage, and a Qualcomm® Snapdragon 765G processor. The battery is comparatively larger than the previous 4 and 4XL devices, and both the storage specifications are improvements on the same. The largest differences are that there is only a single variant of the device with 128GB of storage standard (unlike previous 64GB and 128GB options) and the device features a whole-punch style display embedded camera.
With the slower processor of this particular generation of Snapdragons, it’s hard to argue that the Pixel 5 is much of a flagship phone. The slower processor as compared to other recent hardware releases from Samsung, make it difficult to attract a premium price for this device. That being said, Google does a lot with software and in our testing, it is hard to notice much of a difference in device performance. That being said, processor-intensive activities like Photo retouching/processing take noticeably longer with the loss of the neural core in Pixel 5.
One of the most notable and obvious changes on Pixel 5, was the return of the rear-fingerprint sensor. In the release of the Google Pixel 4, Google touted the capabilities and power of the Soli-Radar chip. Pixel 4 used that same radar chip to add all sorts of capabilities including “face-unlock” but in this iteration of devices, Google decided to drop the chip. For fans of the “face unlock” this will be a blow but to long time Pixel Fans, it’s a major victory.
While our editors had nothing overwhelming negative to say about the device, they had a hard time giving this device the grades the hype surrounding it may have warranted. Overall, we are confident in recommending this device as a mid-tier Android smartphone.