Pixel 7 Pro review: Google’s new flagship impresses
The Pixel 7 Pro costs less than its big-screen rivals but offers just as many top-notch upgrades
What we love
- Stunning screen
- Brilliant triple-lens camera
- Oodles of power
- Plenty of smart features
- Very competitive price
What we don’t
- Design won’t suit everyone
- Rivals charge faster
- Looks very similar to Pixel 6
The Pixel 7 Pro offers some seriously good value for money. Yes, it does cost £849 but compared to devices such as the £1,199 iPhone 14 Pro Max or £1,149 Galaxy S22 Ultra, that actually seems pretty reasonable.
For your money, you get a stunning 6.7-inch 120Hz screen, a fast Tensor G2 processor, decent battery life and access to all the latest Android updates. The camera is also superb and if you simply want a device that can point and shoot, the Pixel 7 Pro is a top choice as Google takes all the hassle out of snapping pin-sharp pictures.
Along with the camera, we also like the smart features tucked inside the Pixel 7 Pro with the foreign translation and instant dictation options both very useful.
This is a solid smartphone but we do have some niggles including the design. Firstly, Google hasn’t moved things on from last year which means things look very similar to the Pixel 6.
The camera bar won’t be to everyone’s taste and the curved edges plus its very large size make it supremely slippy in your hand. Unlike some of its cheaper Android rivals, there’s no charger in the box and it can’t refill anywhere near as quickly as phones from the likes of Oppo and Xiaomi.
Despite a few negatives, the Pixel 7 Pro is a great smartphone that offers big features at a lower price than both Apple and Samsung. For that reason, we give it a big thumbs up.
The Pixel 7 Pro still features its unique camera bar design
Pixel 7 Pro: Full review
Google is back with a new Pro smartphone and it could give Samsung and Apple a serious headache. This big-screen device offers an abundance of features for a very reasonable price with its £849 cost undercutting its premium rivals by a considerable margin.
If that’s got you considering making the switch to the Pixel 7 Pro here is our full review.
The new camera
We’re starting with the camera as this is where the Pixel 7 Pro really excels. Tucked inside the unique bar – that runs right across the back of the device – is a triple camera that includes a 50-megapixel main sensor along with a 12-megapixel ultrawide and 48-megapixel telephoto lens.
Pixel phones are renowned for taking great pictures without any hassle and, thanks to a clever mix of hardware and software, the 7 Pro takes things up another notch.
Photos snapped on this device look stunning and even someone with no photographic know-how should have no issues taking pin-sharp and pixel-packed images.
The addition of an improved 30X Super Res Zoom and new Macro Mode for extreme closeups makes sure this camera offers plenty of options for all situations. See image our test image below for the zoom.
Of course, Google likes to add some neat magic tricks to its photography experience with the Pixel 7 Pro getting the incredible Magic Eraser which gets rid of anyone who has photobombed your family pictures via a simple tap on the screen.
There’s also instant Face Unblur which sharpens photos that might be out of focus – this feature can even be used on old images that you have stored in Google Photos. We’ve tried it on a number of images and the results are seriously impressive. You can see one old picture that’s been given the Face Unblur treatment in the images below.
Finally, for anyone who fancies being the next Speilberg, there’s a cinematic mode which adds some background blur to home movies. This is something Apple brought to its iPhone range last year and whilst clever it’s probably not something the majority of users will get a huge amount of use out of.
Overall our impressions of the Pixel 7 Pro’s camera are really good with it generally taking great pictures no matter how light or dark things are.
Full camera samples below.
The Pixel Pro takes stunning snaps with little fuss
Pixel 7 Pro review – camera sample
Pixel 7 Pro also takes impressive shots at night
Pixel 7 Pro review – camera samples
Design and display
If you were hoping for a major design refresh from Google you’re going to be disappointed. The Pixel 7 Pro looks almost identical to the 6 Pro and that’s both good and bad.
Let’s start with the things we like about this new smartphone including that unique camera bar on the rear case. Although it might divide option we actually like this band that stretched across the back of the phone as it really sets it apart from the ever-growing list of Android rivals.
The moment you pull it from your pocket there’s no mistaking that this is a Pixel and the two-tone appearance and glossy Gorilla Glass finish make things feel incredibly premium.
Spin the device around and you’ll be treated to a giant 6.7-inch QHD+ display which is sharp and packed full of colour.
Pump up the brightness – which is now 25 percent brighter than before – and you’ll have no issues checking emails and surfing the web even in the midday sun. This panel also features a 120Hz refresh rate which makes everything you do feel silky smooth and stutter-free. It’s also fully adaptive which means it drops to as little as 60Hz when things are idle to preserve precious battery life.
There’s plenty to like about the design and display but we do have one big niggle as we’re simply not fans of the curved edges and screen that swoops around the sides of the device.
Firstly, the curvaceous case makes things ludicrously slippy in the hand and it’s easy to see how this big phone could slip through your fingers.
We also find it much easier to read content on flat screens such as the latest iPhones – even the standard Pixel 7 has this less curvaceous appearance so we’re not sure why Google included it on the Pro.
It’s also worth noting that this is a very big phone and is definitely not suitable for anyone who wants a dainty device to squeeze into their skinny jeans. Sadly, there’s no smaller Pixel 7 Pro model so if you want all the best features you will need to go large.
The Pixel 7 Pro is now powered by the G2 chip
New Tensor G2 processor
Google made a massive change in 2021 and ditched the usual Qualcomm brains in favor of its own Tensor chip.
Overall impressions of that first-gen processor were good and now things have been improved thanks to the launch of the new Tensor G2.
At the launch, Google promised that its latest brain would bring a swathe of upgrades such as more power, better smart features and longer battery life to the Pixel 7 range.
Having put this device through its paces it’s certainly no slouch and handled everything we’ve thrown at it with ease.
It’s a nice update from Google but a number of Geekbench tests, which show just how powerful smartphone chips are, reveal that Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 888 Gen 1 chip remains slightly faster.
Things could get worse for Google next month with Qualcomm expected to release its Gen 2 brain which could make the gap even bigger.
The triple camera sits inside a unique bar on the phone
Battery life and charging
Battery life hasn’t been a worry with the Pixel 7 Pro easily lasting a day and beyond. We’re still fully testing things and will update this review in the coming days but early impressions are good.
When things do run low the battery can be boosted via a wired or wireless connection and there’s even the option for fast refilling although you don’t get a plug in the box so this will cost you extra.
It’s also worth noting that the 7 Pro only supports 30W speeds which is a long way off what some rivals now offer. For example, the latest Oppo devices now support 150W charging which can boost the phone from flat to full in just a matter of minutes.
Pixel 7 Pro review
Pixel devices have always been pretty clever but that Tensor G2 brain helps to take things up a level.
You’ll find with improved voice dictation that can turn spoken words into text which is brilliant for anyone who wants an easy way to transcribe interviews or take notes during a lecture.
Much more accurate foreign translation will be useful on your next holiday abroad you can even turn a voice note sent via messages service into physical text with just a single tap on the screen.
Another bonus of this phone is that it can watch you at night and reveal how bad your snoring is!
Other extras included on the Pixel 7 Pro include fast facial recognition, a very good fingerprint scanner plus early access to all the latest Android updates.
Of course, the new iPhone gets the interactive notch and the Galaxy Ultra ships with a stylus to scribble on the screen but there’s plenty going on inside the Pixel 7 Pro to make it a worthy contender.
The Pixel 7 Pro is covered in Gorilla Glass Victus
Considering the latest iPhone 14 Pro Max and S22 Ultra will set you back well over £1,150 the Pixel 7 Pro’s £849 price tag feels very reasonable.
Yes, it’s still very expensive but you are getting a lot of tech for your money.
At launch, Google was running a promotion that also offered a free a Pixel Watch worth £379 when purchasing this latest call maker and that’s something you are never going to get from Apple.
That deal has ended but watch out for more promotions in the future.
It’s also worth noting that Google is currently offering interest-free credit on its devcies which means you can buy this Pro model for as little as £35 per month.
The Pixel 7 Pro comes in three colours
Pixel 7 Pro verdict
We’ve always liked Google’s Pixel devices as they are easy to use and come packed with nice extras that are genuinely useful rather than just gimmicks that end up being forgotten.
Despite it looking very similar to the Pixel 6, the 7 Pro has plenty of upgrades that make it worthy of a place in your pocket.
The screen is great, the camera takes stunning snaps no matter how bad your photography skills are and there’s nice bonus features such as the Magic Eraser and instant face unblur.
The £849 price also makes it feel like a real bargain when placed alongside similar devices from Apple and Samsung.
We’re not 100 percent sold on the curved design, the charging is a bit slow and those speed tests reveal that the G2 processor can’t quite keep pace with Qualcomm.
That said, there’s still plenty to like about the Pixel 7 Pro and if you want a big phone without the huge price tag it’s definitely a device to conisder.