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The best Google Pixel 6 alternatives: 5 phones to consider before you buy – Android Authority

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The Google Pixel 6 series is here! The standard model looks like a very reasonably priced flagship device, while the Pixel 6 Pro brings plenty of premium features to the table. Looking for something a little different or just wondering what else is out there? You’re in luck, as this is our rundown of the best Google Pixel 6 alternatives.
The Samsung Galaxy S22 series is one of the best Pixel 6 alternatives, bringing four years of OS updates and five years of security updates. But there’s more to these phones than simply offering an incredible update commitment.
What we thought: Galaxy S22 review | Galaxy S22 Plus reviewGalaxy S22 Ultra review
These phones come with an Exynos 2200 SoC or Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chipset, 120Hz OLED panels, wireless charging, water-resistance, and 8K video recording. The S22 Ultra is also equipped with a 5,000mAh battery, QHD+ display, and a quad rear camera setup consisting of a 108MP primary shooter, a 12MP ultrawide lens, and a pair of telephoto cameras. Meanwhile, the standard Galaxy S22 is smaller than ever with a 3,700mAh battery, 6.1-inch FHD+ screen, and a 50MP+12MP+10MP rear camera trio.
The middle child is the Galaxy S22 Plus, and it shares the S22’s camera system but offers a 6.6-inch FHD+ screen and a 4,500mAh battery. So you won’t be short of choices if you want a recent Samsung flagship.
Apple’s latest iPhones are worth a look if you’re open to iOS and want a well-rounded flagship experience. One of the biggest perks is that these phones regularly get five or more years of software updates, ensuring that you’re running the latest iOS version years down the line.
All four iPhone 13 models bring Apple’s beefy A15 processor, wireless charging, and IP68 water/dust resistance. So you’re covered there in terms of excellent additions. But things differ when we come to screen and camera details, to name a few.
Our verdict: Apple iPhone 13 Pro Max review
The iPhone 13 Mini and standard iPhone 13 pack 60Hz OLED screens with dual 12MP rear cameras. Meanwhile, the iPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max offer 120Hz OLED screens, add a 12MP 3x telephoto camera, and bring autofocus to the ultrawide camera (enabling macro mode photos and videos). The Pro Max also comes with a huge battery, and we thought endurance was fantastic on this device.
You could argue that Google specifically aims at OnePlus with the Pixel 6 series pricing. Now, the OnePlus 10 Pro has arrived, and it’s priced neck and neck with the Pixel 6 Pro.
The OnePlus 10 Pro offers 65W wired charging in the US and 80W charging internationally, a Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 SoC, a 48MP primary camera, and a 50MP ultrawide lens. These two phones are also getting three years of OS updates and four years of security patches — a year short of the new Pixels for security updates but still pretty good.
More reading:  OnePlus 10 Pro review
As you’d expect, the OnePlus 10 Pro packs premium design elements, touting a QHD+ OLED screen, 50W wireless charging, an IP68 rating, and an 8MP 3.3x telephoto camera. Unfortunately, only the T-Mobile OnePlus 9 has an official IP68 rating once again. Nevertheless, these phones are still worth considering, especially if they’re on a special deal as they often are.
Like the idea of a 2021 Pixel phone but don’t want to spend a ton of cash? That’s where the $450 Pixel 5a comes in, making for one of the better Pixel 6 alternatives as a result.
You’re still getting that Pixel software experience, some neat camera features, and three years of OS updates. The mid-ranger also packs the same dual rear camera setup as the Pixel 5 (12MP main, 16MP ultrawide), a 4,680mAh battery, and a welcome IP67 rating. So there’s a lot to like here.
Our thoughts: Google Pixel 5a review
You are sacrificing a few things by opting for this over the Pixel 6, though. The Pixel 5a has a mid-range Snapdragon 765G SoC, a 6.34-inch 60Hz OLED screen (no 90Hz or 120Hz here), the same primary camera we’ve seen on Pixels for years now, slow 18W wired charging, and no wireless charging. Some of these downgrades are understandable, but things like 18W charging are real disappointments in 2021.
The Sony Xperia 1 III continues the recent run of excellent Sony flagships, and it’s worth a look if you value premium features and photography. Starting with the former, the flagship offers a Snapdragon 888 SoC, a 6.5-inch 4K OLED panel at 120Hz, a 4,500mAh battery, 30W wired charging, wireless charging, and a water-resistant design.
Verdict: Sony Xperia 1 III review
Switch to the camera side of things, and the Xperia 1 III brings the heat here too. There’s a variable telephoto camera for the first time in the industry, switching between native 3x or 4.4x zoom. You’ve also got a 12MP primary camera and a 12MP ultrawide lens with autofocus. Toss in a comprehensive camera app and a dedicated Cinema Pro app, and you’ve got a full-featured photography experience here.
Sony’s phone also stands out from other 2021 flagships by virtue of its 3.5mm port. So audiophiles should be happy with this phone.
The company also offers the more compact Xperia 5 III, trading a 6.5-inch 4K panel for a 6.1-inch FHD+ screen. This device also drops wireless charging, but almost everything else is intact here, including that variable telephoto camera and 3.5mm port.
These are our favorite Google Pixel 6 alternatives. Are there any other devices you’d recommend? Let us know via the comments section below.


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