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Astrophotography is an important camera feature on the Google Pixel 5 and 4a 5G phones.

Astrophotography was touted as one of the key features on the Pixel 4, which worked on regular as well as telephoto cameras. A support thread they found shows several sets of comparison images, and, in every case, the ones captured by the wide-angle cameras on the Pixel 5 and 4a 5G feature a sickly green tinge and unsightly digital noise.

Users who wish to continue using the astrophotography feature in ultrawide lens can uninstall updates and move back to the older 7.6 version. Following the update, a warning appears instead saying "Zoom to x1 for astrophotography". But given our lukewarm reception to the ultra-wide lens' output in our Pixel 5 and 4a 5G reviews, we suspect it has something to do with the level of quality that a f/2.2 aperture ultra-wide lens could generate for night-time photography, compared to the f/1.7 aperture main lens. Instead, the app now limits users to the 12MP primary shooter at 1x times zoom or greater.

Google has quietly ditched astrophotography support for the wide-angle shooters on Pixel phones. According to a 9to5Google report, the wider lens is no longer available for capturing in pitch darkness. It's possible the feature is no longer available because the quality isn't up to Google's standards, but that's simply speculation; Google could easily clear things up by releasing an explanation. Google Pixel 3 also had camera issues in the past when a number of users complained their cameras were shaking.

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You can still take ultrawide astrophotography shots using your Pixel 5 and 4a 5G.

It is noted in the Google Support Document that astrophotography only works on zoom settings on the Pixel 5 and 4a 5G.

As I mentioned, the assumption is that Google removed the feature because it didn't perform well with the ultra-wide camera.