Android

HTC U19e vs Pixel 3a XL: Confrontation to Rule the Mid-Range Segment

Almost all smartphones manufacturers announced their latest offering for the first half of the year. However, the Taiwanese giant HTC remained silent so far this year. The company recently took the stage in Taiwan to unveil two new mid-range offerings U19e and Desire 19+. As the name suggests the U19e is an upper mid-range phone which falls right behind the flagships phones. The Desire 19+ attracts those who are not willing to spend a hefty amount on their next phone.

HTC U19e vs Pixel 3a XL

Being an upper mid-range phone the HTC U19e will confront against all the other mid-range phones to stand out amongst the crowd. From last few years, HTC’s smartphone business isn’t going well that’s why HTC’s hopes are quite high with each new phone. Last year Google launched two premium Pixel 3 series phone in the last quarter of 2018. Both the devices were well appreciated due to premium hardware, stock version of Android OS and best-in-class cameras.

However, the hefty pricing makes difficult for everyone to grab it. Google resolved this issue by bringing the affordable Pixel 3a lineup phones. The Pixel 3a is the new standard mid-range offering whereas the Pixel 3a XL brings large display and battery on board. Those who are looking to grab the HTC U19e will certainly consider the Google Pixel 3a XL as well.

Today we will put the latest HTC U19e is a head-to-head confrontation against the Pixel 3a XL. We are hopeful this comparison will provide a good idea regarding the key differences and similarities between the two phones. Without any further delay, let’s start with the design.

Design

Both phones are featuring two different kinds of design. The U19e features an aluminum chassis with glass covering the front and rear side. One of the color variants showcases a few internal modules. The rear side has dual cameras aligned vertically at the top left corner with LED flashlight right below it. The circular fingerprint scanner is on the rear side in the center.

HTC U19e

Unlike the latest phones, the U19e comes with thick bezels at the top and bottom of the display. The top bezel has dual selfie snappers and earpiece. The bottom bezel is quite prominent. The volume controllers and power button are on the right edge. The U19e retains the traditional 3.5mm headphone jack and Type-C port for connectivity.

On the other hand, the Pixel 3a XL comes with a dated design language. Google opted the plastic body instead of glass and metal sandwich to reduce the price tag. Unfortunately, Google didn’t bring any new design trend instead the company retained the two-tone finish we had seen on the Pixel 3 series. The upper rear portion has single rear snapper on the top left corner and LED flashlight, it comes with a glossy finish.

Pixel 3a XL

The bottom portion with a matte finish has a circular fingerprint scanner in the center. The Pixel 3a XL brings back the traditional 3.5mm headphone jack. For connectivity, it also has a Type-C port. The U19e dimensions are 156.5 x 75.9 x 8.0mm and weigh 180g. The Pixel 3a XL is taller, wider and thicker at 160.1 × 76.1 × 8.2mm, however, it is lighter at 167g due to the plastic body. In terms of color options, the U19e is available in translucent purple and green colors whereas the Pixel 3a XL can be grabbed in three colors including Clearly White, Purple-ish and Just Black.

Display

Fortunately both the companies didn’t compromise in the display department. Both the phones sport OLED display panels so you don’t have to worry about contrast ratio, colors accuracy and deep blacks. The U19e features a 6.0-inches AMOLED display panel with Full HD+ screen resolution of 1080 x 2160 pixels. The display aspect ratio is 2:1 and the pixels density is 402 pixels-per-inch.

Google Pixel 3a XL

The best aspect of the display is being HDR10 certified. The company claims the display is specially tuned to watch YouTube videos. On the other hand, the Pixel 3a XL comes with a 6.0-inches gOLED display with Full HD+ screen resolution of 1080 x 2160 pixels. The display aspect ratio is 18:9 and the pixels density is 402 PPI.

Hardware

Being the mid-range phones both the phones aren’t running on the top-tier chipsets. The U19e is powered up by the Qualcomm’s Octa-core Snapdragon 710 SoC with max clocking at 2.2Ghz. The Octa-core chipset is accompanied with 6GB RAM. The Adreno 616 is on board as GPU. The built-in native storage is 128GB which can be further expanded using MicroSD.

On the other hand, the Pixel 3a XL is running on the Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 670 SoC. The Adreno 615 is on board as a graphics processing unit. It is available only in one configuration with 4GB RAM and 64GB storage. It lacks support for memory expansion via MicroSD.

The U19e lights are kept on by a 3,930mAh battery cell. It comes with Quick Charge 4.0. The Pixel 3a XL is running on a 3,700mAh battery cell and supports 18W charger straight out of the box.

Software

As OS both the phones are pre-installed with Android Pie straight out of the box with different UI skin over it. The Pixel 3a XL is pre-installed with Pixel UI skin which is almost stock Android OS with a few extra features. The U19e is running on the Android Pie based Sense UI skin. As far as future updates are a concern Pixel 3a XL will be amongst the first to receive the new updates whereas the U19e owners will have to wait longer for the latest updates.

Google Pixel 3a XL

Camera

The cameras setup will play a vital role here because the Pixel 3a XL is already amongst the best in the cameras department whereas the U19e brings a number of sensors on board to enhance the capturing experience. Starting with the U19e, it features dual snappers on the rear and front-facing side.

HTC U19

The primary sensor on the rear is a 12MP module with an f/1.8 aperture. The secondary snapper is a 20MP zoom sensor with f/2.0 aperture and optical zoom up to 2x. HTC utilizes built in AI  algos for scene recognition to enhance the capturing capabilities in all sorts of conditions. The AI recognition automatically detects the scene and optimize cameras accordingly. The device supports 4K video recording. Those who want more control can use manual mode and adjust settings manually.

It can record videos and photos simultaneously. Up front it has dual selfie snappers, the primary sensor is a 24MP lens with f/2.0 aperture. It supports automatic HDR and Full HD video recording. To further beautify the selfies it comes with dedicated Beauty mode. The secondary snapper is a 2MP module which brings support for facial recognition.

On the other hand, the Pixel phones are always rated amongst the best as the camera-centric phones and the latest Pixel 3a XL is no exception. The Primary rear snapper on the Pixel 3a XL remains 12.2MP sensor with f/1.8 aperture. It brings all goodies of the premium variant except the Visual Core chip.

Due to the lack of a Visual Core chip the Pixel 3a XL’s speed of image processing isn’t as fast as the Pixel 3 XL. The front-facing selfie snapper is 8MP with a f/2.0 aperture. Using AI prowess both front and rear sensors support Portrait mode shots.

Price

The U19e is initially announced for the Taiwanese market at a price tag of TWD 14,900 ($474) with a stated release from June 12th. At the moment it is still not known whether the U19e will be released for other regions or not.

The Pixel 3a XL starts at $479. It is widely available in the US via all major carriers and Google official store. If you want to save money you can opt for the standard Pixel 3a for $400. In terms of pricing both the phones are almost similar, however, wider availability is an issue.

Conclusion

The competition between the U19e and Pixel 3a XL is quite stiff in almost all departments. The U19e isn’t amongst the most striking phones but still, it looks much more stylish than the Pixel 3a XL. In the display department, both have OLED displays, the U19e has an added advantage of HDR10.

The U19e takes lead in the hardware and battery section whereas the Pixel 3a XL has an upper hand in the camera and software department. As far as the availability is a concern both the phones aren’t widely available.

In the end, we would like to hear our reader’s  thoughts regarding the HTC U19e vs Pixel 3a XL in the comments section below. Stay tuned for more comparisons.


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