Google’s reign as the king of durability continues with the Pixel 6a.
JerryRigEverything puts the latest midrange champion through his usual battery of tests.
Although a few models are still available, the days of specialised rugged phones are, for the most part, over. Samsung hasn’t released an Active edition of their smartphones in years, leaving it up to case makers to create methods of protecting your expensive glass-and-metal sandwich of a device. That’s why durability testing is so important, and today it’s the Pixel 6a’s turn to be put to the test.
You know how it goes: another phone launch, another JerryRigEverything video. He has previously tested all of Google’s Pixel phones, most recently subjecting the Pixel 6 Pro to a battery of durability tests last fall. That device survived without incident, but with the Pixel 6a’s price cut in half compared to the 2021 flagship, it’s reasonable to expect some compromises.
For the most part, this durability test runs as expected. The Gorilla Glass 3 covering the display scratches as expected — it isn’t a sapphire screen, after all — but the fingerprint sensor functions normally. Meanwhile, the device’s frame is confirmed to be metal, scratching and scraping under Zack’s razor blade. Despite how good it feels in the hand, the back is plastic, and that material choice leads to one of the best “Art Class with Jerry” segments I’ve seen in recent memory. I won’t ruin it because it’s worth seeing on its own.
The bend test is the part of the video that most of us should be concerned about. No matter how much pressure was applied, last year’s Pixel 6 Pro barely flexed. The Pixel 6a may be half the price, but the familiar design holds up admirably. Despite some minor display bending, the phone is strong enough to break in half. It’s not something you can say about every midrange device these days, and it’s great to see Google continuing its trend of long-lasting, user-friendly designs after a string of underwhelming launches.
We only have a few months until the Pixel 7 and 7 Pro hit stores, which will undoubtedly prompt another round of testing. Given the recycled build Google is using this year, it appears that the company’s stellar track record will continue for another year. If you’re concerned about your phone’s durability, Google’s lineup appears to be a good bet — no pun intended.