While the all-glass Pixel 3 is a sturdy ol’ thing, the jury was out on whether the Pixel 3a, a mix of plastic and Dragontrail glass, could hold up. A test from semi-pro phone breakers JerryRigEverything has officially confirmed that it’s as tough as old boots.
The phone scratches and flexes a little easier than the 3a, expected because plastic isn’t as sturdy as glass, but the 3a seems pleasingly tough. The video is below, but if the idea of someone taking a sharp knife to a brand new smartphone stresses you out, you’ll want to give it a miss.
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Scratches and damage to the phone shouldn’t look too unsightly, as the plastic is the same colour all the way through. While plastic was literally being shaved off the phone, it didn’t change the look too much.
Google’s move away from the now-standard Gorilla Glass for Dragontrail glass seems to have worked out too, as it seems to be just as resistant to scratches and marks. It’s unlikely most casual users are going to take some serious tools to their phone, and I can’t think of anyone short of JerryRigEverything that would want to take a lighter to their phone screen, so it should hold up to everything you throw at it.
All in all, it seems the Pixel 3a has a lot to offer. It’s durable, a cheaper option than the flagship Pixel 3 and it even has a headphone jack, something that’s quickly becoming a nostalgic quirk in modern smartphone design.
Mobile editor Max Parker gave the phone four stars out of five in our Pixel 3a review. He said: “The Pixel 3a doesn’t quite bring back the pure bargain-basement pricing structure of the brand’s once-fabled Nexus series. However, it does lower the barrier of entry for anyone wanting a fantastic camera on a smartphone. The Google Pixel 3a might yet be the perfect antidote to the £1,000 smartphone – and an answer to Google’s dwindling smartphone sales.”