Google ensures every new Pixel phone launches with a new and unique camera feature but it also makes it a point that at least some of these end up on its older Pixel phones as well. Sooner or later. The recently launched Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL may have ‘almost’ the same camera credentials as the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL, but Google made sure, it brought something new and unique with them as well. The Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL launched with a camera feature or mode called the Time Lapse, and now it is rolling out to older Pixel phones down to the original.
Google says the Time Lapse feature “can capture an entire sunset in just a few seconds of video that’s great for posting on social media or messaging to your friends.” The feature essentially works by “capturing anywhere from 6 frames per second to one frame every 4 seconds, to create the effect of a sped-up video at 30 frames per second.” Time Lapse isn’t exactly a new or breakthrough feature – it has existed on many Android devices for years. But, every time you talk about a Pixel camera, the discussion invariably drifts to how amazing they are – so much so that every time Google adds a new feature, there’s a fair bit of excitement around it. The same is true about Time Lapse on the Pixel.
Once available, the feature will be accessible through the more option in the camera viewfinder – much like any other camera mode.
The Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL have the same cameras as the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL - both come with a 12.2MP dual-pixel rear camera with a custom-built Sony IMX363 sensor with f/1.8 aperture and optical image stabilization (plus electronic image stabilization). On the front, the Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL come with an 8MP camera with f/2.0 aperture. Hallmark Google features like Night Sight, Photobooth Mode and Top Shot that made their debut with the Pixel 3 are also available on the Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL.
There are a few differences though. The Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL lack Google’s Pixel Visual Core chip and also, they support Google’s unlimited photo storage but only at high quality.