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Does the Pixel 6a have an SD card slot? How the phone handles expandable storage

In a perfect world, every smartphone would come with some form of expandable storage — including phones like the Google Pixel 6a. People take so many selfies, pictures, and videos on their phones, as well as download games and apps that can eat up a load of storage space. Unfortunately, as useful as expandable storage with SD cards can be, very few phones still have them today.

In the case of Google, specifically, it’s never supported MicroSD card expansion for its Pixel devices. Whether it be the original Pixel from 2016 or last year’s Pixel 6 and 6 Pro, we’ve never seen a Pixel with an SD card slot. Now that the Pixel 6a has been released into the wild, can you expect it to have an SD card slot that its predecessors were missing? Sadly, the answer is no. The Pixel 6a does not have an SD card slot.

Someone outside holding the Pixel 6a. We see the back of the phone.
Joe Maring/Digital Trends

The absence of a MicroSD card slot from the Pixel 6a shouldn’t come as a total surprise. The Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro don’t have that function either. Google leaving that function out of the 6a — and its predecessors — boils down to cost. Most Android smartphones used to support microSD cards a few short years ago, but in the last few years, the high cost of manufacturing and shipping phones with MicroSD support rendered it a rarity. In essence, Google (and other companies) sacrificed expandable storage for sleeker designs and lower costs.

All Pixels all the time

Storage-friendly alternatives to Pixel 6a

At $449, the Pixel 6a already has 128GB of internal storage space, so the absence of a microSD card slot is somewhat justified. However, if you really want more storage space for the untold amount of pictures, games, and other content you’re going to accumulate for the same price, the Samsung Galaxy A53 5G may be your best bet. It has 128GB of storage space like the Pixel 6a, but it managed to keep the microSD card so you can increase as much storage in the device as your heart desires. In fact, the A53 5G supports MicroSD cards all the way up to 1TB in size.

The OnePlus Nord N200 is also a great alternative. It carries 64GB of internal storage space, which isn’t much by today’s standards. However, it retains a microSD card slot so you can further increase storage for the modest price of $240.

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Cristina Alexander
Cristina Alexander has been writing since 2014, from opining about pop culture on her personal blog in college to reporting…
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