Samsung Galaxy A7 hands-on


The Samsung Galaxy A7 is the latest phone to arrive and it completes the A series with a large-screen device. The Galaxy A7 features a 5.5-inch phablet-sized display, but the big highlight - as with all of the A series - is its sleek all-aluminum body. And now that the Galaxy S6 has gone official with a glass back, the Galaxy A series remains the only choice for lovers of metallic smartphones.

The Galaxy A7 is already on sale in some markets, but most are still awaiting its arrival. Luckily, Samsung brought it to MWC 2015, and we took up on the opportunity to make a review of this stylish member of the A family.

Design and Display

The Galaxy A7 sports clean, refined looks, but it is its amazing thinness that really impresses at first sight. The A7 measures just 0.25" (6.3mm) thick, which is thinner than both the Apple iPhone 6 and Galaxy S6. Samsung has also done a great job slimming down the side bezel, so that the phone feels surprisingly compact given its fairly large 5.5-inch display. The A7 is 5.94" (151mm) tall and exactly 3" (76.2mm) wide, while the iPhone 6 Plus, for instance, is 6.22" tall and 3.06" wide, noticeably larger despite the fact that both have equally large screen.

Speaking of the display, the Galaxy A7 sports a 5.5-inch Super AMOLED display with a resolution of 1080 x 1920 pixels, and pixel density of 401ppi. At first sight, the colors on the A7 appear typical for AMOLED - vibrant, rich, a bit overblown, and the screen has excellent viewing angles and deep blacks.

Performance and Memory


The Galaxy A7 is powered by Qualcomm's Snapdragon 615, an octa-core 64-bit system chip featuring eight Cortex A53s running at up to 1.5GHz. The Snapdragon 615 is a step below the high-end Snapdragon 810 system chip, and the main difference is that does not use any high-performance A57 cores, so while it does well with multi-core applications, single-core performance is really not all that stellar. There's also 2GB of RAM and an Adreno 405 GPU under the hood. The handset supports 4G LTE connectivity as well.

The Galaxy A7 features 16GB of internal storage that you can expand via microSD cards of up to 64GB. This is a good option to have, especially now that the flagship Galaxy S6 does not support expandable storage.

Camera


The resolution of the main, rear-facing camera is set at 13 megapixels and there's a single LED flash for scant lighting conditions. The phone is capable of recording video in a 1080p resolution at up to 30 frames per second. Up front, the A7 is equipped with a 5-megapixel selfie shooter.

Expectations


All in all, the Galaxy A7 feels very well made: sturdy and stylish. This is the kind of design that fits well the Samsung brand, given that now you can find cheaper devices with similar specs, but there are not that many with such premium styling in a less expensive envelope than that of a flagship. 

The A7 is not perfectly on par with flagships in specs, but it also does not lack much: it's got a powerful, 64-bit chip, a very decent 13-megapixel main camera, and 4G LTE connectivity. If you're looking for a not-too-expensive phone and want the reliability of a proven brand like Samsung, the Galaxy A7 looks like a very decent option.

Related phones

Galaxy A7
  • Display 5.5" 1080 x 1920 pixels
  • Camera 13 MP / 5 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 615, Octa-core, 1500 MHz
  • Storage 16 GB + microSDXC
  • Battery 2600 mAh(17h 3G talk time)

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19 Comments

1. gueAHOK

Posts: 156; Member since: Mar 03, 2015

Seeing most of the Snapdragon 615 device were sold with price around US$350, I hope samsung price the device in that price range.

3. hung2900

Posts: 966; Member since: Mar 02, 2012

Actually only this one features 1080p and Amoled (Hopefully the quality equals to S5, not Note 3)

5. gueAHOK

Posts: 156; Member since: Mar 03, 2015

the lenovo vibe shot with snapdragon 615, 3GB RAM, 32GB storage, 1080p, 5", with Sony camera 16MegaPixl is priced $350.

6. Nathan_ingx

Posts: 4769; Member since: Mar 07, 2012

This one is downright expensive, for what you get, if you ignore the built.

16. neela_akaash

Posts: 1239; Member since: Aug 05, 2014

The micromax yureka offers Snapdragon 615, 2GB RAM, 16GB storage, 5.5", with 13 megapixel is priced $158

11. hung2900

Posts: 966; Member since: Mar 02, 2012

1. The A7 is released, while the Lenovo's one hasn't until at least June. 2. Lenovo phones are very hard to find outside of China 3. Not everyone says welcome to a Chinese brand like Lenovo (personally I had a good spec Lenovo phone, and it was broken quickly)

13. gueAHOK

Posts: 156; Member since: Mar 03, 2015

I'm surprised when you say the Lenovo phone broken quickly. They were well known for quality for the notebook. I was expecting the quality on their smartphone to be as good as their brand.

19. yoosufmuneer

Posts: 1518; Member since: Feb 14, 2015

They were recently caught with Installing adware and malware on their laptops. I think Macbooks, Dell Ultrabooks and Samsung Ultrabooks are among the best.

4. MarquiX unregistered

Nope that's the A5 that's around 350$ at the most 400$ A3 is around 300 to 320$ max, and the A7 is about 450 - 500$ where you get it. This line is about luxury not performance and that's what Samsung is making you pay for (Basically Apple's strategy). You want performance? E5 & E7 Also the A3, A5, E5 and E7 all have sg410.

2. hung2900

Posts: 966; Member since: Mar 02, 2012

It costs about $450 in my country (In Vietnam, where phones are usually more expensive than USA), a decent price for a beautiful device.

9. slh163

Posts: 140; Member since: May 19, 2014

I actually like that design way more than the S6. the back glass of S6 just killed it for me

12. hung2900

Posts: 966; Member since: Mar 02, 2012

This phone is too iPhone-ish, so no way Samsung uses this design on S series (for eg, since GS3 all S series phones are rounded or somewhat rounded)

7. NotAGeek

Posts: 279; Member since: Jan 26, 2014

Not everyone like big screen.If someone wants a 5" device with the same SD615,that's where the M4 Aqua kicks in

14. gueAHOK

Posts: 156; Member since: Mar 03, 2015

The A5 has a 5" display. But I agree M4 Aqua is also nice.

8. drunkenjay

Posts: 1657; Member since: Feb 11, 2013

looks like a unibody galaxy s2. not bad

10. yoosufmuneer

Posts: 1518; Member since: Feb 14, 2015

Samsung makes beautiful devices (from late 2014 and 2015)

15. robocopvn

Posts: 504; Member since: Mar 10, 2010

Phonearena, I recommend you to stop praising Iphone 6 plus for it design. In the eye of the engineering and designer, they cannot utilize the best screen estate of the phone. Results in the very big phone with the smaller display don't tell much but look at the others device, you all will see

17. charlesxph

Posts: 35; Member since: Jan 04, 2015

This is $533 w/ tax here in the Philippines!! :( and i want one!! :))

18. danielxxi

Posts: 183; Member since: Feb 13, 2013

This design miles better than Galaxy S6/S6 Edge

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