Well , it's been a month since Google sent us our pixel five .
And in that time , I have used this phone as my main phone and I've gotten to play around with it enough where now I'm going to tell you some of the things I really like about this phone , the standout features and in this review , we are going to go in depth on the photography and videography capabilities of the pixel five .
Also tell you some things I don't like about the phone .
And then ultimately , I'll give you my recommendations on who should get one first .
Let's get the six out of the way this phone hits all of the marks .
For me , it has a good resolution led screen with much better viewing angles than the pixel four A the 90 Hertz screen makes scrolling look very smooth .
Google also went with an all screen display this time which makes this phone look incredibly modern .
And I much prefer this design with the whole punch for the selfie camera than the pixel four XL last year with its larger bezel .
One thing to note is there's no top speaker and it's under the display with the pixel five .
So the speaker quality isn't as good as the pixel four XL that I had in my opinion , but it's adequate enough for me to use where I haven't really noticed it all that much .
The battery life is insanely good .
It's probably the best battery life I've ever experienced on a phone .
I've been seeing a full charge last me about a day and 10 hours or so on average , which means if I forget to charge it at night , it's not just going to be dead .
When I wake up in the morning , Google was able to include wireless charging on this phone , which is great and something I definitely missed while using the similar looking pixel four A .
They also put a pixel imprint sensor on the back .
Foregoing the great face unlock feature .
They debuted on the pixel four last year .
I have to say the pixel imprint sensor has been quite a convenient feature , especially while wearing a mask during the pandemic .
However , over the long term , I still prefer having face unlock .
I think it's just a more convenient way of unlocking your phone .
But in an ideal world , you'd have a phone that had both face unlock and an imprint sensor .
Another basic this phone absolutely nails is the materials used in its construction .
Google went with aluminum , meaning the phone is much lighter than other phones out there and weighing 150 g which makes it easy to use in one hand for long periods of time .
I think the weight of phones is definitely something a lot of people overlook and is one huge benefit in my book with this phone .
I wish more phone manufacturers would copy Google here and make lighter phones , the rounded edges and the mat back material on this phone results in a phone that's easy to hold for long periods of time and easy to grip .
It's not slippery and it's water resistant .
Unlike the pixel four A .
Another thing that makes this phone such a joy to use like in years past is the pixel version of Android that runs on it .
It's simple .
There's not crap ware or ads loaded on to it like you get with other phones from other manufacturers .
Google also adds some really nice time to other Google products with this phone like adding smart home controls to the power button menu or the on device , Google Assistant that has some really great pixel specific features like call screen where the Google assistant will screen out spam calls .
This feature was incredibly useful to me on the pixel four XL that I used before the pixel five .
This year , Google added another similar feature to the Google assistant called Hold for me where the Google assistant will stay on a call for you when you're put on hold and will ring your phone when the representative is there ready to speak with you .
So far , I've used this feature one or two times already and it actually works quite well .
Now , moving on , if you're a fan of Haptics , the pixel five sports a Haptic experience that's very similar to last year's pixel four .
Now , when compared to an iphone 12 , the pixels Haptics aren't as subtle as the iphones can get .
But overall , I still like the pixel five's Haptics and I absolutely love that Haptics are on the keyboard by default .
It makes the typing experience so much better .
The performance of the phone is fine .
It's snappy and everything feels fluid .
I've only run into the phone freezing on me once , maybe twice in the month .
I've been using it .
The only constant area you will notice the phone's performance drop from the pixel four and four XL last year is in photo processing .
The pixel five just takes a second to process a photo compared to the almost instantaneous processing that we saw with the pixel four .
Speaking of photos , let's talk about the camera .
The camera is probably one of the main selling points for the pixel five because it's often considered one of the best cameras in the smartphone industry .
And in my experience , it's been an impressive camera that you can do a lot with the pixel five S camera has netted quite a few stunning photos , especially thanks to its color correction and automatic white balance adjustments .
When comparing photos to the new iphone 12 I think the pixel five is pretty comparable in most situations when you have bright sunlight , there are certainly corner cases where one phone's camera will outperform the other .
Though , take this example of a forest starting to change into fall colors near sunset , the pixel captures the glow of the sun a bit better and does a much better job capturing what the ground actually looks like than the iphone which just punched up the highlights and whites on the ground making it not look that visually appealing .
However , on the flip side , take a look at this picture of a sunset at Lake Crab Tree in Raleigh .
The iphone's H D R tech does a much better job at showing the warmer tones of the sunsets , yellow and orange colors and it doesn't have as much exposure blowout at the center of the sun like the pixels photo does .
Now in general , I still think I like the look of the pixels images a bit better than the iphones because of their cooler look with a bit more contrast and the pixels tendency not to up the highlights of a photo as much as the iphone , but that's a personal preference .
Also the pixel five S camera U I lay out is excellent and easy to use .
One change to the camera hardware .
This year is the inclusion of a wide angle camera instead of a telephoto camera , making it much more comparable to the experience of other smartphones out there , the wide camera produces some great results that I think are actually pretty comparable to the iphones , if not better .
Thanks to Google's outstanding H D R after using the pixel five S camera .
Now , for over the past month , I have to say that I don't really miss the telephoto camera that came with the pixel four from last year .
And that's because the pixel five like previous pixels is using Google's super re zoom technology to achieve basically the same look through software .
And when comparing it to the telephoto images from my pixel four XL , the two zoomed in photos look pretty much identical like in years past the pixel five supports raw photos and all you have to do is hit the arrow at the top of the screen to bring up the camera settings where you can turn on raw camera support .
The selfie camera on the pixel five is quite good .
It produces nice clear images with a good amount of detail and is also pretty comparable to the iphone 12 selfie camera compared to the pixel selfie camera on the four I like that you can do not just one X , it can also do 1.4 X as well .
Next , let's talk about the video capabilities of the pixel five and this for me has been one of the only downsides that I've encountered with this phone , especially when you compare it to the competition .
Let's talk about what been improved with the pixel five S video capabilities compared to last year's pixel four , Google has adjusted the colors and contrast in the video to make things look less washed out and gray .
They also added some new stabilization modes which in my experience work really well , especially the cinematic mode which gives you great looking slow panning shots to help set the scene .
The locked stabilization yields some impressively smooth video .
When you're shooting a far away subject , the active stabilization mode works as well but can result in some wonky colors .
Google also added four K 60 frames per second which was missing in last year's pixel and is a video mode where I think you can see the most improvement in video quality compared to the previous pixels , especially when it comes to color accuracy .
Take this shot , for example , the grass looks the correct hue of green that you see in real life .
Now where things go a little wonky with the colors is when you use some of the other stabilization modes like active stabilization , I had instances where the green didn't look quite right , but then the phone auto adjusted it later , but that switch back and forth wasn't great or predictable .
The main camera sensor like in most phones is definitely better in terms of producing less grainy video compared to the wide sensor .
And that's certainly true with the pixels cameras for video when comparing the pixels video quality to something like the iphone twelves .
The footage I get on the pixel still looks oddly more compressed when comparing the exact same shot on a iphone 12 .
The iphone's footage just looks a bit crisper .
Take this example of a panning shot of the company Mill Trail sign .
You'll notice that the iphone's footage is crisper on the sign even though the pixels might pick up slightly more detail in the sign grooves itself .
Now , the other difference you'll notice in the pixels video quality compared to Apple's is the iphone produces video with a bit of a warmer tone where the pixels has a cooler cast .
Now , this is also the same for still photography where I actually prefer the pixels look in general .
However , for video , I think it's cool cast is too much to the point where some things you take a video of don't represent the actual colors you see in real life .
Like for example , water in a stream , there are some edge cases where I noticed that the pixels video quality is better than the iphones like picking up the sunlight's glow through fall leaves in the afternoon .
Overall , I'd say the pixel five video quality is fine .
There are some areas that Google does need to improve like the colors .
But overall , I'd say that the pixel five actually produces pretty good video quality .
The pixels video footage is actually better than I was expecting and produces way more usable footage than I anticipated compared to the pixel fours video quality , which just wasn't great .
All right .
So we've gone over the things I like about the pixel five , some of the things I don't like about it .
And that brings us to the fundamental question of who should get this phone now for existing pixel users .
I think anyone with a pixel three or older should probably consider upgrading to the pixel five .
If you're looking to upgrade the new design way improved battery life and camera upgrades , probably make this upgrade worth it to you .
And considering the pixel five is a lower price than the pixel four was last year .
That was also an added bonus .
Now , speaking of the pixel four , if you have a pixel four , you may also want to consider upgrading to the pixel five , considering the battery life has been vastly improved over the pixel four .
Now you have a pixel four XL , you don't really need to upgrade to the five .
I don't think there's enough there to make that upgrade worth it .
Plus there's no XL version of the pixel five this year .
Now , if you're looking at the pixel five compared to the pixel four A and ask me which one I'd recommend .
I'd say the pixel five is worth it .
When you look at the better screen 90 Hertz display , wireless charging and water resistance , wireless charging and a better screen are a must for me with any phone that I use as my main phone in 2020 .
But that cost trade off may not be worth it to you depending on what you want out of your phone .
Now , if you're thinking about switching to a pixel from an iphone , we have a video that I'll link here that describes my experience of switching from an iphone to Android one year later .
So definitely check that out if you want to see how it's been going .
Now in general , I think the pixel five is a phone that just does all of the basics really well .
I have to admit that when Google sent me the pixel five and I first got it , I wasn't all that excited about it .
It didn't have any cutting edge features like face unlock last year , the soly radar that just were supposed to wow me even though the soly radar thing didn't really pan out , but the face unlock thing was quite good on the pixel four .
Now , as I've started to use the pixel five more over the past month , I have to say I have really enjoyed using this phone .
It's a pixel experience without compromise .
The phone has a great screen design , good battery life , a fantastic camera with improved video quality and will continue to get features throughout its life with pixel feature drops , which are something I've loved on the pixel four XL .
It's an easy phone to recommend to anyone who wants a solid Android experience .
Without compromising on the fundamentals .
And plus it has one of the best cameras on any Android device .
All right .
Well , that's it for our one month later review of the pixel five .
Now we'll have an additional review of this phone at the six month mark .
So if you want to see that video as well as other reviews of Google and other tech products , make sure you subscribe to the channel .
Now , I hope you found this video helpful and informative and if you did make sure you hit that thumbs up button below for six months later , I'm Josh Teter .
Thanks for watching .