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7 Areas of Difference between the Apple iPhone 7 and the Google Pixel

7 Areas of Difference between the Apple iPhone 7 and the Google Pixel

Google have decided to drop Nexus and put their own name on their phones. Perhaps it is a show of confidence in the new models? The Pixel and Pixel XL.

Is the Pixel any good? Is it better than the iPhone 7?

The iPhone 7 launched in September of 2016 and the Pixel in October of the same year(1). They should, therefore, be very similar in regards of innovation and general design.

So how exactly are these devices different from one another? Let’s take a closer look…

  1. Looks and Design

Both are made from the standard metal and glass, and both fit comfortably in the palm of your hand. Heavily chamfered edges on the Pixel does make it a little more comfortable to hold.

The glass back on the Pixel makes it the more fragile phone though, reported as being prone to cracking(2). Then again it is a very bad idea to carry any of today’s phones without a case.

The iPhone looks more refined. It’s a tough decision looks-wise. Where the iPhone is more straight edged and square, the Pixel seems more rounded due to slightly bigger side bevels.

The Pixel comes along with Google’s unique brand of humour, being available in Very silver, quite black and really blue. Yes, these are the colour options you would get from your service provider or cashier.

The iPhone comes in more colours, namely Rose gold, gold, silver, black, jet black and red. Personally I would avoid the jet black, since it seems to be a fingerprint and scratch magnet.

The iPhone design has remained largely the same over the last three models, and it is time for a change. The design, while still attractive, seems a bit old.

In the first area of difference, I’d have to say the iPhone comes off slightly better. Only just.

  1. Display

The iPhone brings an LED backlit IPS LCD screen measured at 4.7 inches. A 750×1334 resolution and pixel density of 326 ppi makes for a great display. The new wide colour gamut adds extra vibrancy in those colours.

The Pixel brings a slightly bigger 5 inch AMOLED screen to the table. At a resolution of 1080×1920 and 441ppi, the Pixel clearly trumps the iPhone in this department.

The Pixel is covered in Corning’s Gorilla Glass 4. It is believed to be a tougher phone, but the same glass is used on the Samsung S7. We’ve all heard by now of the fragility of the S7.

It cannot be stressed enough that a protective case is a must.

The Pixel’s display is much sharper, but the vibrancy of the iPhone’s display makes up for this a little.

The differences in screen clearly favour the Pixel.

  1. Performance

The Google Pixel includes an exciting new snapdragon 821 quad core processor reaching speeds of up to 2.15 GHz. This comes with the Adreno 530 GPU. The Pixel is no slouch.

The iPhone comes equipped with an A10 fusion quad core with speeds of up to 2.34 GHz and the same Adreno 530 GPU that is found in the Pixel.

Ram-wise, the Pixel has 4GB and the iPhone 2GB. Both phones come in 32 and 128GB storage options, but only the iPhone provides a massive 256GB model.

The Pixel offsets the limited storage with its free unlimited cloud storage, however(3). More on this in the Software section.

On this benchmark test, the iPhone tears the Pixel to shreds. The Snapdragon 821 is clearly no match for the A10.

Both of these phones run really well, and there are no apps today that can push the iPhone to its limit. If you’re looking for a long term commitment, or gaming is your thing, the iPhone might be the better option for you.

  1. Battery

Battery life today is more important than ever. We’re all constantly on the move and we want our devices to keep up. It’s great when you can charge up at your leisure, and not at the whim of a phone with the temperament of a four year old.

It is surprising then, that Apple hasn’t focused more energy on their battery. The iPhone 7 offers better battery life than the 6, but it’s marginal.

With a small battery capacity of 1960 mAh, the iPhone lags far behind the 2770 mAh of the Pixel. It shows, too, with the iPhone having trouble lasting a full day, while the Pixel makes it comfortably(4).

With constant use, the iPhone can go from 100-0% in just six hours(5), far short of the ten hour grind most of us face daily. The iPhone is just not up to par in this department.

By mid-evening, the Pixel will need a charge(4), so the battery life isn’t exactly ground-breaking. It charges quicker than the iPhone though, so there’s that.

The difference in this department is sheer size, and thanks to its larger battery size, the pixel comes off better in this difference.

If battery life is your main concern, you’d probably be happier with a Samsung or HTC.

  1. Software

The Google Pixel runs on the latest Nougat 7.0 Android Operating System. This means running two apps at once, family sharing and google assistant.

The iPhone runs on Apple’s latest iOS 10, which comes with its own host of features including Siri.

If you’re still holding onto your iPhone because of Siri, you need to try Google Assistant. It seems more responsive and directs you to Google maps instead of the ill-reputed Apple maps.

Say you’re on a web page about a book, and you want to know what year the book was released. Just ask “In what year was this book launched?” and Google assistant will know you are talking about the open web page and you’ll get your answer dynamically.

It is a very exciting glimpse into the future of what AI will be able to do for us.

The iPhone provides a better platform for gaming, being less prone to lag.

Personally I prefer Android, and have for quite some time. If you’re an avid gamer, however, it might be worth going for the iPhone. It’s really only a matter of personal choice.

  1. Sound

The news that Apple have dropped the headphone jack from their latest model is old by now. If you really want to use headphones with the iPhone 7, it is possible with Bluetooth or a lightning/USB adapter, so it’s really not that big of an issue.

In the place of the headphone jack you get a little stereo speaker system that is great for a phone this size.

The Pixel comes with your standard single speaker. It does, however, offer a headphone jack without the need for an adapter.

The difference here is the headphone jack and the stereo vs. standard sound. Not only that, but with the iPhone you’re getting free wireless earphones. In themselves they solve a lot of cable-related problems.

The difference here skews in favour of the iPhone for me.

  1. Camera

Who doesn’t love the fact that you no longer have to pack a bag full of electronics when heading out for a day? Today’s phone cameras take pictures a hundred times better than yesteryear’s dedicated camera’s, and these two are no exception.

The iPhone 7 comes equipped with a 12 MP rear camera and a 7MP front camera. The Pixel boasts a 12.3 MP rear camera and an 8 MP front camera.

Front cameras are pretty useless in my humble opinion. There are the selfie activists out there and for that purpose it is worth mentioning that the Pixel is a bit more true to colour than the iPhone(6).

Let’s get down to those rear cameras now.

The difference in aperture between the cameras isn’t all that noticeable. The only time this comes into play is with sunlit whites, where the pixel does better(7), and lowlight conditions, where the iPhone does better(7).

The pixel used to fall out completely in lowlight conditions, producing far more fuzz. That’s before Google released the HDR plus mode, which helps it to compete with the iPhone in lowlight(7).

Before HDR, I might have preferred the iPhone here, now it’s a pretty even match and the differences are slight.


The differences are clear and they are many. For those of you who were keeping score, the Apple took it 3-2.

In the end the choice of phone is a personal one. Personally I don’t think there’s a bad choice here. Both of these phones are great and most people would be happy with either one.

If these were the only two phones on the planet, however, I would go with the iPhone.


Apple iPhone 7 Google Pixel
Looks & Design – Aged design, but still beautiful. – Bigger side bevels gives it a slightly bloated look.
Display – Great colours, lacks a bit in sharpness. – Great, sharp display. Excellent use of AMOLED technology.
Performance – Crushes the competition with the powerful A10 Fusion. – Can’t quite keep up with the iPhone, but the Snapdragon 821 has more than enough power.
Battery – Small size and poor battery life. – Decent size, mediocre battery life.
Software – iOS 10 is a great system. Excellent for gaming. – Android is more open than iOS, and Nougat 7.0 is a great OS.
Sound – No headphone jack, good stereo speakers. – Poor standard single speaker. Headphone jack.
Camera – 12MP f/1.8 aperture camera. Great camera. – 12.3MP f/2.0 aperture. Has the better camera, but not by a noticeable amount.


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