Dealmaster: Google’s Pixel 3a phone is a better value at $350 today

Greetings, Arsians! The Dealmaster is back with another round of deals to share. Today’s list is headlined by a deal on Google’s Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL phones, unlocked models of which are both $50 off. That brings them to $349.99 and $429.99, respectively. While some retailers bundled the phones with $100 store gift cards when they first launched, this marks the biggest outright discount we’ve seen for the devices from reputable stores to date.

That’s notable, since the Pixel 3a was already a great value at its normal price point. We’ve recommended it a few times in the past, but the gist is that it gives you most of the better features of the full-fat Pixel 3 for half the original price. Namely, its camera is tremendous for a sub-$500 phone and still rivals those from higher-end Android flagships. Its OLED display is good for the money, it works with all the major US carriers, and you get first priority on Android software and security updates until May 2022 with Google’s typically clean take on its own operating system. It also has a headphone jack, which the flagship does not.

As with any affordable phone, there are trade-offs. The design here is comfortable but mostly plastic, with nothing in the way of water resistance or wireless charging. The screen could be brighter, and the speakers could be louder. The Snapdragon 670 chip and 4GB of RAM are strong enough to smooth performance for most tasks—and the Dealmaster’s personal Pixel 3a has held up fine after five months of use—but it’s clearly a step down over time from top-of-the-line hardware. And the big elephant in the room is that Google is set to announce the Pixel 4 next week, which could result in clearance sales on the Pixel 3. But for now, those flaws aren’t hard to overlook for $350, and this is still a fantastic value.

If you don’t need a new Android phone, we also have deals on Beats’ surprisingly excellent Powerbeats Pro true wireless earbuds, a Nintendo Switch and Amazon gift card bundle, Amazon’s Fire TV Stick 4K, gaming mice and keyboards, and much more. Have a look for yourself below.

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