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OnePlus 9R vs Google Pixel 4a 5G: Budget flagship or budget champion?

By Nadeem Sarwar March 25, 2021, 1:18 am
google pixel 4a 5g vs oneplus 9R pocketnow

With the OnePlus 9 series, the company has entered the bonafide flagship territory where the likes of Apple and Samsung offer their top-end phones. While the company has definitely upped its game in the hardware department and made strides to improve the camera performance as well, it is still keeping a foot firmly planted in the budget flagship territory. At least in a few markets. The best example of that strategy is the OnePlus 9R, which is currently exclusive to the Indian market. But how well does it stack up a similarly-priced Google phone? Read this OnePlus 9R vs Google Pixel 4a 5G comparison to find out which one’s the better option:



lake blue OnePlus 9R

High refresh rate display, or not?

High refresh rate display or not? That’s the question you should ask yourself before considering either device. If you’ve previously used a phone with a 90Hz panel, going back to a 60Hz panel can be a not-so-good experience. Actually, it is a bad experience, and you can take my word for that. And that’s exactly what happens if you go with the Google Pixel 4a 5G. 

OnePlus 9R offers a 6.55-inch AMOLE display with FHD+ (2400 x 1080 pixels) resolution with a 120Hz refresh rate. The panel supports the sRGB and P3 color gamut, and is protected by a layer of Gorilla Glass. There is a circular hole-punch cutout that plays home to the 16MP front camera.

black pixel 4a 5G

On the Google Pixel 5, you get a smaller 6.2-inch FHD+ (2340 x 1080 pixels) display, but the screen refresh rate is capped at 60Hz. If you’re someone who has gotten used to a 90Hz or higher refresh rate screen, moving back to a 60Hz is a major compromise. The hole-punch aesthetics will greet you on the Google phone as well.

OnePlus 9R vs Google Pixel 4a 5G: Internals

OnePlus 9R races way ahead of the Pixel 4a 5G when it comes to raw processing power. The OnePlus offering relies on the flagship-grade Snapdragon 870 SoC, while the Google Pixel 4a 5G comes equipped with the Snapdragon 765G 5G SoC. Additionally, the memory configurations are also more diverse (and powerful too) in case of the OnePlus device. 

oneplus 9r black

OnePlus 9R is a flagship, Pixel 4a 5G is strictly not

You choose between 8GB + 128GB and 12GB + 256GB options for the OnePlus 9R, while the Pixel 4a 5G is available in a single 6GB + 128GB model. Unfortunately, there is no scope for storage expansion on either phone. However, the Google phone offers a 3.5mm headphone jack, while its OnePlus rival misses out on this convenience.

Another key area where the OnePlus 9 emerges as a far better option is charging speeds and battery capacity. The OnePlus device offers a 4,500mAh battery with support for blazing-fast 65W fast charging. The Google Pixel 4a 5G, on the other hand, packs a smaller 3,800mAh battery that maxes out at 18W fast charging. 

OnePlus 9R vs Google Pixel 4a 5G: Camera

pixel 4a 5G white

Choose between versatility and the Pixel camera experience

Right off the bat, the OnePlus 9R offers a camera setup that is more versatile, but the actual color science is where the Google Pixel 5a might emerge as the winner. OnePlus has four cameras at the back, with the main shooter utilizing the 48MP Sony IMX586 sensor backed by both OIS and EIS. There is also a 16MP ultra-wide-angle lens, a 5MP camera for macro photography, and a 2MP depth sensor. You get a 16MP front camera. 

Coming to the Google Pixel 4a 5G, it offers an optically-stabilized 12.2MP dual-pixel main camera, sitting alongside a 16MP ultra-wide camera at the back. And to take care of selfies, you get an 8MP front camera. Both the phones can capture 4K videos at 60fps though. 

OnePlus 9R vs Google Pixel 4a 5G: Pricing 

The Google Pixel 4a 5G is currently priced at $499 and comes in two color options – Just Black and Clearly White. As for the OnePlus 9R, it costs around $550 and is up for grabs in Carbon Black and Lake Blue colors, but it is currently limited to the Indian market. 

View Google Pixel 4a 5G at Best Buy


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