Google Pixel 7/Pixel 7 Pro – high-class, almost identical twins (smartphone review).

The Google Pixel 7/Pixel 7 Pro are almost identical under the hood, with the main differences being screen size, 8/12GB RAM and 48MP Telephoto in the Pro.

We have both on the testbed, and the benchmarks are so close that we decided to do a dual review. It is a matter of $999 or $1299. Those are pretty good flagship prices, but as we delved deeper, we found a few Google quirks that, depending on your needs, may sway you to or from OPPO FindX5/Pro or Samsung Galaxy S22/+/Ultra.

For example, we applaud Google for using a USB-C 3.2 Gen 2, 10Gbps port. But we strongly question why it

  • Crippled alt DP (Display Port) audio/video for external monitor support – only allowing Chromecast wireless screen mirror.
  • Won’t support a mountable external SSD that would be perfect for videographers.
  • Still needs a USB-C DAC cable to use external cabled earphones.
  • No longer supports 32-bit Apps (Android 13 does), leaving those using legacy apps and games unable to use them. It is a Google Pixel arbitrary decision that affected several of my testing apps. Sure, it makes a device more secure, so maybe this is not the biggie that the media suggest.

So, consider these deeper questions when you decide if it is what you want. We have lived without its camera’s magic eraser and funky advertising quite well so far.

Australian Review: Google Pixel 7/Pixel 7 Pro

WebsitePixel 7 Product page
Pixel 7 Pro Product Page
PricePixel 7 128/256GB $999/1129
Cases from $34.99 to $75
30W USB-C Charger $45
Pixel 7 Pro 128/256/512GB $1299/1449/1599
Cases from $34.99 to $85
FromPixel 7 Google Store
Pixel 7 Pro Google Store
JB Hi-Fi, Harvey Norman, Officeworks, The Good Guys and many other retailers
Country of OriginChina
AboutGoogle is that giant company that started with a search engine and is now one of the largest advertising platforms in the world and is behind the Android and Chrome operating systems.
MoreCybershack smartphone news and reviews

We use Fail (below expectations), Pass (meets expectations) and Exceed (surpasses expectations or is the class leader) against many of the items below. We occasionally give a Pass(able) rating that is not as good as it should be and a Pass ‘+’ rating to show it is good but does not quite make it to Exceed.

You can click on most images for an enlargement. We used GP7 for Pixel 7 and GP7P for Pro.

Basic comparison – Specs from Google

 Pixel 7Pixel 7 Pro
Price128/256GB $999/1129
Cases from $34.99 to $75
30W USB-C Charger $45
128/256/512GB $1299/1449/1599
Cases from $34.99 to $85
ColoursLemongrass, Snow, ObsidianHazel, Snow, Obsidian
Screen6.3” 2400x 1080, 19.5:9,
60/90Hz OLED
16m colours HDR10+
Up to 1000 nits (HDR) and 1400 (peak)
GG Victus
6.7” 3120 x 1440, 19.5:9, 60/120Hz LPTO OLED
1500 (peak)
ProcessorGoogle Tensor 2Same
SecurityTitan M2 Fingerprint/Face unlockSame
Storage128/256 UFS 3.1 (98GB free)128/256/512GB UFS 3.1
CommsWi-Fi 6E AX HE160
BT 5.2
Dual Band GPS
USB-C 3.2 Gen 2 10Gbps (no alt DP or external mountable storage)
LTE/5G4G and 5G sub-6Ghz Sim and eSIMSame
Battery4335mAh Qi
21W USB-C (not supplied) USB PD 3.0 compatible PD 20V⎓1.5A, 15V⎓2A, 5V/9V⎓3A; PPS 21V⎓1.5A. 11V⎓3A
23W USB-C (not supplied)
Size155.6 x 73.2 x 8.7mm x 197g162.9 x 76.6 x 8,9mm x 212g
BuildGG Victus front
Aluminium frame
GG Victus back fingerprint resistant
IP68 water resistant
SoundStereo, No EQ  
Three mics with noise suppression
Speech enhancement
Audio zoom
Android13 – 3-5 years Pixel UpdatesSame
Camera Rear50MP Bins to 12.5MP f/1.85, 1.2/2.4um,
LDAF, 82°, OIS/EIS, Samsung GN1
12MP Ultra-wide f/2.2, 1.25um, 125.8° FF Sony IMX386 or OmniVision OV12A

4K@60fps, 10-bit HDR
Same 50MP

Same 12MP

48MP Telephoto
bins to 12MP
Sony IMX586
f/3.5, .7/1.4um, 20.6°
5X optical zoom
30X hybrid digital zoom OIS/EIS
Camera Front10.8MP F/2.2, 1.22um, 92.8° 4K@60fpsSame

First impression – Pass+

The Google Pixel 6 and 6 Pro (2021) were, in my mind, at least, serious attempts by Google to capture market share. While I loved the earlier Pixel models, they were more for enthusiasts.

The Google Pixel 7/Pixel 7 Pro are not so much new phones but incremental upgrades to the 6-series. If you own a 6, then there is no need to update. But they make the swap to Google Pixel more compelling. Google wants some of Apple and Samsung’s pie.

They are, according to Google, not only Android reference phones but have a few unique features like the Titan M2 security chip and Google’s AI tweaks that take computational photography and on-device learning to the next level.

The Google design cues are still there, with the camera bar at the rear (now metal) and some new colours. The glass back makes these slippery – they slide off a desk all too easily – so use a case. While I like the design and the prominent camera bar, it really interferes with Qi flat pad chargers.

Display – not class-leading – Pass+

It is not just 6.3” versus 6.7” but 2400 x 1080 versus 3120 x 1440, 60/90Hz versus 90/120Hz and a serious colour difference. The Pixel 7 has a distinct cool blue cast, and the 7 Pro has a nice clean, warm white.

These cover DCI-P3 of the 8-bit, 16.7M colour gamut. Many flagships are now 10-bit/1.07B colours (meaning Pixel covers about 60% of that), but you won’t see the difference for general use.

The refresh is either 60 or 90Hz (Pixel 7) or 60 or 120Hz (7 Pro) – it is not adaptive. Many flagships now have adaptive rates from 1-120Hz, which can increase battery life.

Daylight use is OK on the Pixel 7, but you need to turn the Adaptive Brightness off and manually set it to 100%. The Pro is much better in daylight.

In our tests, both screens were around 400 nits for typical use. Both have peak brightness (1400/1500nits) that supports up to HDR10+ (on a small portion of the screen), but there is no Dolby Vision support. That is not critical.

The Pixel 7 Pro has a resolution setting – 1080p or QHD+ 1440p – the latter chews more battery.

Screen winner: Pixel 7 Pro

Why Google silicon?

Google implements advanced image processing features like Magic Eraser to remove unwanted objects, Face Unblur to sharpen up faces, and motion mode to better capture movement by blurring the background of your image. It also enables accurate Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR) for the Recorder app and Live Caption/Translate tool. 

Processor – Tensor G2 – Pass+

The Tensor G2 (GS201) is made by Samsung using a 4nm fab. It has 2 x 2.85GHz, 2 x 2.35GHz and 4 x 1.8GHz cores and is locked to only run 64-bit Apps. The GPU is an ARM Mali-G710 MP07.

The G1 was mainly based on a 5nm Samsung Exynos 2100. But the G2 seems less based on the 4nm Samsung Exynos 2200 – more a beefed-up version of the former with stronger machine learning capabilities.

The modem is a Samsung S5300.

Benchmark Tests – Pass

  • Geekbench 5 (both were similar and are rounded) single/multi-core scores: 1060/3300
  • OpenCL: Not available to test
  • Vulcan: 4400

These are faster than the Samsung Exynos 2100 but well behind the Qualcomm SD8+ Gen 1 at 1336/4202/6409 (single/multi/Vulkan).

Disk Tests – Pass

Each unit has 128GB of UFS 3.1, but speed tests (sequential read/write MBps) indicate relatively slow storage speeds (comparable storage achieves 1300/250)

  • 817/165
  • 841/169

We were excited that these have USB-C 3.2 Gen 2, 10Gbps ports but were highly disappointed that it does not support alt DP (audio/video out), and you cannot mount an external SSD as live storage. All you can do is use OTG to cut and paste files.

Throttle tests – Pass(able)

The differences indicate better thermal management of the 7 Pro

15-minute testMax GIPSAverageMinimumThrottle %
Pixel 7270,145239,348205,55119%
Pixel 7 Pro257,466235,305210,59015%

Comment: These are acceptable throttling rates, but gamers may be concerned about longer use. We ran the Pixel 7 for 30 minutes, and it dropped to a stable 25% loss.

Comms – Both are identical and deliver similar results – Pass+

  • Wi-Fi 6E (802.11ax) with 2.4GHz+5GHz+6GHz, HE160, MIMO
  • Ultra-Wideband chip for accurate ranging and spatial orientation
  • NFC
  • Google Cast
  • GPS Broadcom BCM4776 dual frequency L1 and L5

Wi-Fi 6E (6GHz) Test – excellent

  • 2 metres from Netgear AXE11000 router: -22dBm/2268Mbps
  • 5 metres -44dBm/2268Mbps
  • 10 metres-53/1729
  • 15 metres unusable (as expected)

Tests on the 5Ghz band were similar, with -67/544Mbps at 15m.

You will get strong Wi-Fi speeds on the Wi-Fi 6 AX or 5 AC bands.

Battery – Pass

Pixel 7/Pro has a 4335/5000mAh battery. No charger is supplied, and Google recommends its $45 30W USB PD 3.0 compatible PD 20V⎓1.5A, 15V⎓2A, 5V/9V⎓3A; PPS 21V⎓1.5A. 11V⎓3A.

Google claims 24+ hour battery life in its tests – let’s see how this fares

Battery Tests (Pixel 7/Pro) all in 60Hz and 1080p res

  • 1080p video loop 50% brightness/sound/aeroplane mode: 17 hours, 19 minutes/16 hours 11 minutes
  • PC Mark: 12 hours 18 minutes/11 hours 49 minutes
  • Accubattery: 17 hours 6 minutes/18 hours
  • GFX Bench Manhattan: Would not run – characteristic of Samsung Exynos
  • GFX Bench T-Rex: 332.7 minutes (5.55 hours) 5051 frames/317.9 minutes (5.3 hours) 6715 frames
  • 30W Charge 0-100%: 1hr 33 minutes (both)
  • 5V/3A/15W charge 0-100%: 4 hours 33 minutes/4 hours 38 minutes (we ran this test 4 times – same result)
  • Qi 5V/3A/15W charge: 5 hours 33/47minutes
  • Qi 21/23W: We don’t have a $119 Google Pixel Stand that supports 21/23W Qi for the Pixel 7/Pro
  • Discharge 100% – 100-0%: 5 hours 15 minutes/5 hours 28 minutes.
  • Discharge screen on, idle: 600mA
  • Discharge screen on, 100% load: 1500mA

Battery life is a hard call. All tests used 60Hz screen settings and 1080p resolution. While we did not have time to repeat these on 90/120HZ and 1440p screen (Pro), we estimate that you will lose 20-30% battery life at those settings.

PC Mark is the best indication of typical use, and Accubattery is similar to our video loop.

Google has an Extreme Battery Saver mode (which disables various features, including 5G connectivity) and claims 72 hours.

Comment: Typical users should recharge daily, and power users may need to top up at the end of a workday.

Phone – City and suburbs only – Pass

While there are slight band differences, they are both Sim and eSIM, single ring tone. There is an interesting Live Caption of calls and a Live Translation feature.

Pixel 7 Model GVU6C

  • 4G B1/2/3/4/5/7/8/12/13/14/17/18/19/20/25/26/28/29/30/38/40/41/46/48/66/71
  • 5G n1/2/3/5/7/8/12/14/20/25/28/30/38/40/41/48/66/71/77/78
  • mmWave n260/n261

Pixel 7 Pro GE2AE

  • 4G adds 39/42
  • %G – same
  • mmWave adds n257/n258

As we have found with Samsung-based modems, they only find the closest tower with signal strengths ranging from 500fW to 6pW.

Comment: This is a city/suburbs phone only where you have good tower coverage.

Sound – Pass+

It is stereo 2.0 with a top/up-firing earpiece (an almost undetectable slit) and a bottom-firing speaker with a distinct volume bias. These are driven by 2 x CS35L41 mono D-Class amp 5.3W, 1% THD – similar to most Samsung Galaxy phones.

There is no EQ but an Adaptive sound mode using AI to adjust the sound using the microphone.

BT 5.0 has SBC, AAC and LDAC codecs – no aptX. It supports fast pairing and has good volume and left/right separation.

It does not have a USB DAC, so you must use a USB-C DAC cable to plug in earphones.

Test Volume (in dB – Pixel 7/Pro)

  • Maximum music volume 80/82
  • Media 77/80
  • Call 62/62 (excellent)
  • Ring and notifications 65/67
  • Alarm 70/72

These are pretty typical for flagship phones.

How does it sound? – Pass

Deep Bass 20-40HzNil
Middle Bass 40-100HzNil
High Bass 100-200HzBuilding to 200Hz
Low Mid 200-400HzBuilding to 200Hz
Mid 400-1000HzFlat
High-Mid 1-2kHzFlat
Low Treble 2-4kHzFlat
Mid Treble 4-6kHzFlat
High Treble 6-10kHzSteep decline to 10kHz
Dog Whistle 10-20kHzFlat to 15kHz, then drops off a cliff.
Sound Signature typeBright Vocal (bass recessed, mid/treble boosted) – for vocal tracks and string instruments but can make them harsh. In saying so, a hint of high bass makes music more listenable.
SoundstageOnly as wide as the phone. There is a distinct bottom speaker bias.
Dolby AtmosIt does not support it and makes no difference to the sound stage
CommentThe sound signature is average for music, but the large disparity between the top and bottom speaker must be addressed.

Build – Exceed

Both are the same

  • Cover glass: Scratch-resistant Corning Gorilla Glass Victus
  • Rear: Edgeless Corning Gorilla Glass Victus
  • Frame: Matte aluminium frame
  • IP68 dust and water resistance(not waterproof)
  • Fingerprint-resistant coating

Google goes to lengths to explain its IP68 rating. Designed to comply with dust and water protection rating IP68 under IEC standard 60529 when each device leaves the factory, but the device is not water- or dust-proof. Water resistance and dust resistance are not permanent conditions and will diminish or be lost over time due to normal wear and tear, device repair, disassembly, or damage. Dropping your device may result in a loss of water/dust resistance. Liquid damage voids the warranty.

Comment: Good for rain and the occasional toilet dunking but not for anything else.

Android 13 – secure and upgradeable – Pass+

AndroidGoogle Android 13
GoogleAll standard apps, Google Lens. Maps, Assistant and YouTube.
Google Assistant by pressing the power key
Update PolicyThree Android OS upgrades
Five years of security patches from the date of launch
SecurityOptical under-glass Fingerprint reader
Google Titan M2 security chip

Security – Pass+

The Pixel 7/Pixel 7 Pro has a Titan M2 discrete RISC-V security chip. It communicates with the Tensor G2 security core. As a custom-designed security subsystem, it supports Android Strongbox, which securely generates and stores keys used to safeguard user passwords and PINs. In short, it makes Pixel more secure than most other brands.

Missing – some may be a deal breaker

3.5 mmNo 3.5mm nor a USB-C to 3.5mm DAC adapter
MicroSDNever has and never will be
USBA lost opportunity to implement USB-C 3.1 Gen 2 with ALT DP for USB-C/HDMI cable screen mirror
External StorageIt is a concern that you cannot mount external storage to direct record video and large files.
SoundDolby Atmos, Qualcomm aptX, EQ and pre-sets
ChargerEspecially as 30W charging only works with the Google Charger!

Camera – its raison d’etre – Exceed

While the Pixel 7/Pixel 7 Pro use the same rear camera hardware as the 6/Pro, the use of enhanced processing power in the Tensor G2 and AI has lifted computational photography to the next level.

Computational photography is more about what you should see rather than what you did see. To a degree, the results are manufactured, which is not a bad thing. We all want saturated colours, pin-sharpness and details in the highlights and lowlights.

DXOMARK rated the Pixel 7 Pro as the current world’s best at 147 points. But the Apple iPhone 14 Pro Max is 146. Telling, however, is the huge gap to the Pixel 6 Pro at 134, Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra at 135, OPPO Find X5 Pro at 130, Pixel 6 at 126 and Pixel 6a at 122.

Both use an STM V53L1 Time-of-Flight (ToF) infrared laser depth measure with a range of 4m. This really helps in Bokeh (background blur shots). Past that distance, PDAF kicks in.

The Pro also has a fusion mode where primary and tele sensors information combine to deliver the best possible image quality at any tele zoom setting.

Camera details

Camera Rear 150MP Bins to 12.5MP f/1.85, 1.2/2.4um,
LDAF, 82°, OIS/EIS, Samsung GN1 8X digital zoom
Camera 212MP Ultra-wide f/2.2, 1.25um, 125.8° FF Sony IMX386 or OmniVision OV12ASame, but doubles as a macro and has AF.
Camera 3No48MP Tele bins to 12MP Sony IMX586
Telephoto f/3.5, .7/1.4um, 20.6° OIS/EIS
5X optical zoom
30X hybrid digital zoom OIS/EIS
Video4K@60fps, 10-bit HDRSame
Camera Front10.8MP F/2.2, 1.22um, 92.8°, FF 4K@60fps
Samsung S5K3J1

Camera features – both

Photo UnblurMacro FocusNight SightTop Shot
Portrait ModeSuper Res ZoomMotion autofocussesLive HDR+
Frequent FacesDual exposureCinematic PanUltrawide lens
Portrait LightMagic EraserMotion ModeReal Tone
Face UnblurPanoramaManual white balancingLocked Folder

How do they look?

The 50MP primary sensor (bins to 12.5MP) takes sharp, focused, colourful and detailed images with good HDR in the highlights and low lights. The Pixel 7 can digitally zoom to 8X. The 7 Pro can digitally zoom to 3X when the 48MP Telephoto kicks in.

 Interestingly the Pixel 6/Pro using the same sensor are pretty similar too. As experts, we can tell that there is a lot more post-processing, but the results are both excellent.

The 12MP on the Pixel 7 is just for fixed focus wide-angle, whereas the Pro uses the same sensor for Auto-focus and macro, which is excellent.

The 48MP Telephoto (bins to 12MP) gives 5X optical and 30X hybrid zoom. It is good at what it does – zoom, but there is no colour consistency with the primary sensor.

The video was a mixed bag. Don’t try 4K@60fps, as you lose HDR, EIS and speech enhancement. It has three mics (one on the camera bar) for stereo recording. 4K@30fps is generally good, but the best shots day and night are at 1080p@30fps – superb.

You can click on the images for an enlargement – use the browser back arrow to return to the review. GP7 is Google Pixel 7, and GP7P is Pro.

Cybershack’s view – Google Pixel 7/Pixel 7 Pro are high-class, almost identical flagship twins

Here you get to know what I feel after a week or so with each. Overall, they are excellent phones, but they lack external mountable SSD support, no cable screen mirror, and somewhat slow 30W charging means that the more expensive OPPO FindX5 and Pro with Qualcomm SD8 Gen 1 and 80W fast charge are better options for me.

If you are a Samsung fan, the Galaxy S22, S22+ and S22 Ultra are excellent performers, and again the Qualcomm SD8 Gen 1 means a better modem with a stronger phone signal and BT aptX codecs may suit. These lack mountable external storage.

Then there is the Motorola Edge 30 series – particularly the Pro and Ultra (not yet reviewed) that give Google, Samsung and OPPO a run for the money. These have fast charge, external mountable storage, and the Ultra has a 200MP primary camera.

I challenge anyone to tell the difference between the quality of all the above. Google wins on points, but the others are damned good.

In our first look Google Pixel 7/Pro – serious competition at last, I said that the price is excellent (and it is), but now, having analysed both, the Pixel 7 Pro is the clear winner. It gets our buy recommendation as long as you realise its limitations.

Rating Explanation

Features: 90 – it has everything you expect from a flagship apart from the missing items (see review). But it has a lot of Pixel-only software features.

Value: 90 – well priced, but remember these are 128GB versions, and 5412GB costs $300 more.

Performance: 90 Good processor power with reasonable throttling.

Ease of Use: 90 – Android with generous update policies

Design: 90 – I don’t mind the Google design but use a case

Pixel 7/Pixel 7 Pro, Pixel 7/Pixel 7 Pro, Pixel 7/Pixel 7 Pro

Google Pixel 7/Pixel 7 Pro

GP7 froom $999 and GP7P from $1299







Ease of use





  • Pixel 7 Pro has the best camera in 2022. Pixel 7 is not too far behind
  • Reasonable all-day battery life
  • Pixel 7 Pro has the brightest screen, but both are excellent
  • Smooth operation – plenty of power
  • Excellent Android update policy


  • No external mountable SSD/Flash storage
  • No charger and 30W charging is so yesterday (compared to 80-125W)
  • Fixed screen refresh instead of adaptive means a battery life hit at higher rate/res
  • No external alt DP display port audio/video over USB-C/HDMI