Pixel 7 One Year Later: Should You Upgrade to the Pixel 8?

Google Pixel 8 is the latest flagship from the search giant, and I recently reviewed the phone. In my review, I found that the Pixel 8 isn’t a must-upgrade for Pixel 7 users. And this makes more sense when you look at the price difference between the Pixel 7 and Pixel 8, especially in India. It actually might be a better idea to get the Pixel 7 at the moment. I’ve been using the Pixel 7 for over a year, and here’s how it has aged.

Pixel 7 vs Pixel 8 Price

Let’s get the prices out of the way first. The Google Pixel 7 with 128GB storage, the only variant sold in India, is currently priced at Rs. 49,999 on Flipkart. On the other hand, the new Pixel 8 starts at Rs. 75,999 for the 128GB option. This time, Google also brought the 256GB variant to India, which cost you Rs. 82,999. Yes, the pricing is bonkers!

Of course, you can use card discounts and other offers to reduce the price, but you still cannot justify the massive price hike for the Pixel 8. Or can you?

Pixel 7 vs Pixel 8 Design

As I said in my Pixel 8 review, the design has some changes that make the new Pixel more comfortable to hold. The Pixel 7 is top-heavy for some reason, and it’s also not very comfortable to hold for long periods of time. It has slightly less rounded edges than the Pixel 8, and the bezels around the display are thicker. It has a glass back with a camera visor, which can double as a finger rest. Buttons on the Pixel 7 are clicky, and everything is arranged on the right-hand side, making it easy to access.

Most of this is the same with the Pixel 8, but some small changes make it more comfortable. I prefer the Pixel 8 over the Pixel 7 mainly because it’s lighter, and one-hand use is very much possible.

At the front, the Pixel 7 has a 6.3-inch display with a 90Hz refresh rate and up to 1,400 nits peak brightness. It’s got even bezels all around but the chin, which is thicker than the rest. The Pixel 8, on the other hand, has a 6.2-inch display with a 120Hz refresh rate and up to 2,000 nit peak brightness. The display on the Pixel 8 is much better and brighter than the Pixel 7, and I’d choose the former any day. Thanks to the higher peak brightness, it’s much better to use under direct sunlight. Both phones use Corning Gorilla Glass Victus on the front and the back. The Pixel 7 and Pixel 8 display are still AMOLED, and they support HDR10+.

Pixel 7 vs Pixel 8 Hardware and Performance

I’ve been using the Pixel 7 since its launch in India. The phone was delivered on October 15, and a year later, I’ve not faced any lag while going about daily tasks such as messaging, using Slack and Mail, watching videos on YouTube, listening to music, opening and closing apps, using Maps, etc. The only time I’ve faced lag, and it was terrible to the point I had to stop using the phone, is when using the camera at the Buddh International Circuit during MotoGP Bharat. Yes, it was insanely hot, and the phone just kept overheating, and the camera lag was super bad. Apart from that, I’ve never really faced any lag or the phone slowing down in the one year I’ve owned it.

I couldn’t tell a huge difference in performance when compared to the Pixel 8. The camera processing is a little bit faster, but that’s pretty much the only real-life indication of the new chipset.

The Pixel 7 has a Tensor G2 SoC (5nm), whereas the new Pixel 8 comes with a 4nm Tensor G3 chipset. Both phones feature 8GB RAM. I’m not going to post any benchmark scores here because I don’t think they translate to real-life usage. For daily usage and some gaming, I did not see any major improvement with the Pixel 8. Both phones get slightly warm when gaming, but nothing is too wrong. The Pixel 7 is still a great phone and offers good enough performance.

Pixel 7 vs Pixel 8 Camera

I’ll be honest here: there are no major differences between the Pixel 7 and Pixel 8’s primary camera in terms of daylight performance. The Pixel 7 still takes some of the best daylight and night shots, and it’s never disappointed me. However, when it comes to ultra-wide, you’ll see some differences. The Pixel 8 gets auto-focus on the ultra-wide camera, which translates to better image quality. The ultra-wide camera also has a wider FoV, and thanks to the auto-focus, you now get a Macro mode for the first time in a non-Pro Pixel.

In terms of hardware, the Pixel 8 gets a slightly updated 50-megapixel primary camera with f/1.7 aperture instead of the f/1.9 unit found on the Pixel 7. This allows more light to be captured, leading to better overall images, especially at night.

For those who don’t use the ultra-wide camera a lot and don’t need a Macro mode, the Pixel 7 is still a great camera phone for daylight shots. There’s also not much difference in Night Sight between the Pixel 7 and Pixel 8.

To check out camera samples, please head over to my Pixel 8 review.

Pixel 7 vs Pixel 8 Software

This is where you’ll see some differences between the Pixel 7 and Pixel 8. While I haven’t seen any major lags in performance in the past year, the Pixel 7 does miss out on some software features that are now exclusive to the new Pixel. For example, the Pixel 8 comes with new AI features such as Audio Eraser, Magic Editor, Best Take, and AI wallpapers.

With the Pixel 7, you only get Magic Eraser. Now, the user interface, animations, and other Pixel exclusive features such as Now Playing are all the same on both phones, however there’s one more new thing that’s exclusive to the Pixel 8. Google is promising 7 years of software updates for the new Pixel, which is incredible. Meanwhile, the Pixel 7 gets 5 years of software updates.

Pixel 7 vs Pixel 8 Battery

Battery life is a major feature that one looks at when buying a new phone. With my Pixel 7, I can still manage about a day’s worth of battery life with ease. Most days, I only have to charge the phone the next day. The battery life isn’t that great, but it’s not bad either. I’d say it’s adequate, at least for me. I didn’t notice any major improvements in battery life with the Pixel 8, but it does last slightly longer.

There’s also no major difference in the loudspeaker quality between the two phones. Pixel 8 still uses an optical under-display fingerprint scanner, and it’s still not the best around. It is only slightly better than the Pixel 7. One new and useful thing is that Google has managed to make the Face unlock more secure on the Pixel 8, and it now supports banking apps.

Pixel 7 vs Pixel 8: Which One to Buy?

I’ll get right to the point: the new Google Pixel 8 isn’t worth the Rs. 75,999 price tag in India, and it would be a wiser decision to spend much less and get the Pixel 7. Honestly, you will not be compromising on a lot. Yes, the Pixel 8 offers a brighter display, compact design, more AI features and a better ultra-wide camera, but that doesn’t warrant the insane hike in price. Also, the longer software support is great on paper, but I’m pretty sure most users aren’t going to keep their phones for 7 years.

The Google Pixel 7 is the one to buy, at least until Google decides to slash the price of the Pixel 8.

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Google Pixel 8 vs Google Pixel 7 comparison


Google Pixel 8

Google Pixel 7

Key Specs
Display 6.20-inch 6.30-inch
Processor Google Tensor G3 Google Tensor G2
Front Camera 11-megapixel 10.8-megapixel
Rear Camera 50-megapixel + 12-megapixel 50-megapixel + 12-megapixel
Storage 128GB, 256GB 128GB
Battery Capacity 4575mAh
OS Android 14 Android 13
Resolution 1080×2400 pixels 1080×2400 pixels

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