There's little doubt that Google's newest smartphones, the Pixel and Pixel XL, are tempting. Both devices are designed and built by Google and include some features you won't find on other Android devices, including the Nexus line (for the time being).
However, there's a downside to Google's new hardware initiative: the price. Gone are the days of inexpensive Nexus phones, maxing out around $500. Google's Pixel line starts at $649 and max out at $869, depending on model and storage amount.
For someone looking for a capable Android phone on a budget, let me present you with the OnePlus 3 and Axon 7. Both of these devices are loaded with features and far less expensive than the Pixel line.
Below is a chart comparing the specifications of each device:
|Spec||OnePlus 3||Axon 7||Pixel/Pixel XL|
|Display||5.5-inch 1080p Full HD||5.5-inch Quad HD||5-inch Full HD/5.5-inch Quad HD|
|Processor||Qualcomm Snapdragon 820||Qualcomm Snapdragon 820||Qualcomm Snapdragon 821|
|Storage||64GB||64GB||32GB or 128GB|
|Camera||16-megapixel rear/8-megapixel front||20-megapixel rear/8-megapixel front||12.3-megapixel rear/8-megapixel front|
|Operating System||Android 6.0 Marshmallow||Android 6.0 Marshmallow||Android 7.1 Nougat|
|Dimensions||152.7 x 74.7 x 7.35mm||151.7 x 75 x 7.9mm||143.8 x 69.5 x 8.5mm/154.7 x 75.7 x 8.5mm|
|Price||$399||$399||$649/$769 32GB. $749/$869 for 128GB.|
The OnePlus 3 and Axon 7 are respectable devices in their own right, with the Axon 7 having a slight advantage over the OnePlus 3 thanks to its QHD display and Daydream compatibility (pending a software update from ZTE).
Performance wise, it's hard to say exactly how much faster the Snapdragon 821 processor or what camera performance is like on the Pixel.
Google really talked up the Pixel's camera performance, touting DxOMark's rating of the Pixel camera as earning the highest score for mobile camera ever. But, as we've seen in the past, when Google has touted Nexus camera performance as finally competing with the likes of Samsung and Apple, we were let down.
Until we have units and are able to thoroughly test Google's boasting, we can't directly compare the Pixel, OnePlus 3, and Axon 7.
On the spec sheet, at least, all three of these devices are comparable to one another. With the biggest difference between them being the amount of money you have to spend, and for some, that's more than enough to stay away from Google's latest wares.