Best mid-range phones in Australia

Google Pixel 4a

(Image credit: TechRadar)

3. Google Pixel 4a

Compact and affordable with a killer camera


Weight: 143g
Dimensions: 144 x 69.4 x 8.2 mm
CPU: Snapdragon 730G
Storage: 128GB
Battery: 3,140mAh
Rear camera: 12.2P
Front camera: 8MP

Reasons to buy

Excellent camera
Compact design
Incredibly affordable

Reasons to avoid

Average battery life
Plastic back
No weatherproofing

While many other handsets on our mid-range recommendations list are at the upper end of the price bracket – often pushing the AU$1,000 mark – Google’s latest offering retails at a much more appealing AU$599.

Although some premium features have been cut to reach this target (a plastic back instead of glass and a lack of waterproofing are key among them), the phone packs a punch where it counts.

First and foremost, the Pixel 4a’s single rear 12.2MP camera is one of the best on the market at the moment, not necessarily due to its hardware but more so because it makes use of Google’s cutting-edge AI to process photos and video once they’ve been captured.

You’ll also be getting a pure, stock version of Android as Google intended, which includes with it the promise of being among the first to get any future updates and patches (guaranteed for at least three years).

Being a dedicated Google phone, you’ll also notice seamless integration with Google Assistant, so for those that make even occasional use of this tool, you’ll notice many day-to-day tasks becoming a little more streamlined.

Compared with most other phones, the Pixel 4a also offers up a considerably smaller footprint and lighter weight, which is ideal for one-handed operation as well as for users with small hands or no need for larger displays in general.

Running the show is the mid-range Snapdragon 730G alongside 6GB of RAM and 128GB of on-board storage. This combo is perfectly competent for regular use, with everyday tasks running without hitch, but those seeking to play the latest mobile games will need to extend their budget.

Its 5.81-inch OLED display is both vibrant and smooth, with a resolution of 1080x2340 (443ppi) and the move to a punchhole selfie camera means you’ll get minimal bezels and a 19.5:9 aspect ratio. You’ll also be getting a headphone jack, Bluetooth 5.0, and stereo speakers for your audio needs. 

Unfortunately, the 3,140mAh battery isn’t as well optimised as some competitors, so while it’ll easily last a full day of typical use, you’ll likely need to top up in the evening if you’re using it more intensively.

It may not be for everyone, but the Pixel 4a has very snugly filled the gap in the market for a capable and comfortably sized smartphone that works as you expect, takes top-notch photos, and doesn’t require a second mortgage.

Read our full Google Pixel 4a review

Harry Domanski
Harry is an Australian Journalist for TechRadar with an ear to the ground for future tech, and the other in front of a vintage amplifier. He likes stories told in charming ways, and content consumed through massive screens. He also likes to get his hands dirty with the ethics of the tech.