Introduction


Samsung released a pretty strong entrance in the mid-range Android segment with the waterproof 2017 A-series trio, and now we have the largest of them all – Galaxy A7 – to check out on. It shares specs with the A5, which we already reviewed – 14nm Exynos chipset and two 16 MP cameras – but has a half an inch longer display diagonal and a 20% larger battery. Will these warrant the price difference between the two for big screen aficionados? Let's find out...

What's in the box:

  • Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017) model SM-A720F/DS (dual SIM)
  • User Manual and warranty leaflets
  • Sim ejector tool
  • USB-A to USB-C cable
  • White Samsung OEM EHS64 earbuds with replaceable rubber tips
  • 2A wall charger (15 watts peak, 9V and 1.67A, or 5V and 2A)

Design

Samsung is moving its flagship glass-and-metal chassis downmarket, so don't drop the A7 biggie.


Our Galaxy A7 (2017) looks like a nondescript black slab before you pick it up, but when you do, the premium crafting is palatable. The phone is also available in several other colors, including a very nice pastel blue. Samsung moved the glass-and-metal design of its flagships downstream this year, and as a result the A7 has a dark metal frame sandwiched between two plates of glass. It's not Gorilla Glass 5, though, and as the case is with all types of glass, it will crack if subjected to enough impact force.

The A7 is a pretty big phone, too, with a 5.7" display, so make sure you don't drop it while getting it out first, before you have gotten used to the grip needed to secure its dimensions in your palm. The biggest downside of the handset stems precisely from its largish display, as it is not very conducive to handling in the palm only, especially if it has a case tacked on, too.

The sides of the phone are busier than usual, as Samsung has moved the speaker from its traditional place on the back or bottom where it is likely to get covered during certain activities, to the right side, above the home key. It's a good placement, and the speaker grill isn't covered easily when you watch videos in landscape mode as we were afraid it would. The power key on the right, and the volume buttons on the left are somewhat thin, but made out of sturdy metal, they don't wobble, and are easy to find and press without looking if need be.

Last but by no means least, Samsung has provided two SIM card trays in the A7 Duo version. Given that this phone will be sold in regions where dual SIM card phones are very popular, it is going to prove a wise decision. Moreover, the A7 can function with two SIMs and a microSD card inserted at the same time, unlike many dual SIM phones that make you choose between dual SIM functionality or expandable storage.

All SIM card slots are plug and play, too, there is no need to power down the phone first in order to add or swap SIMs.Dreamy! We'd advise against doing that with the secondary combined tray at the top, though, as it also houses the microSD card, and, if you are writing something on it at the moment, taking it our without powering off the phone may result in loss of information on it.

Samsung Galaxy A7 (2017)

Samsung Galaxy A7 (2017)

Dimensions

6.17 x 3.06 x 0.31 inches

156.8 x 77.6 x 7.9 mm

Weight

6.56 oz (186 g)

Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)

Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)

Dimensions

5.75 x 2.81 x 0.31 inches

146.1 x 71.4 x 7.9 mm

Weight

5.61 oz (159 g)

OnePlus 3T

OnePlus 3T

Dimensions

6.01 x 2.94 x 0.29 inches

152.7 x 74.7 x 7.35 mm

Weight

5.57 oz (158 g)

Samsung Galaxy S7 edge

Samsung Galaxy S7 edge

Dimensions

5.94 x 2.86 x 0.3 inches

150.9 x 72.6 x 7.7 mm

Weight

5.54 oz (157 g)

Samsung Galaxy A7 (2017)

Samsung Galaxy A7 (2017)

Dimensions

6.17 x 3.06 x 0.31 inches

156.8 x 77.6 x 7.9 mm

Weight

6.56 oz (186 g)

Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)

Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)

Dimensions

5.75 x 2.81 x 0.31 inches

146.1 x 71.4 x 7.9 mm

Weight

5.61 oz (159 g)

OnePlus 3T

OnePlus 3T

Dimensions

6.01 x 2.94 x 0.29 inches

152.7 x 74.7 x 7.35 mm

Weight

5.57 oz (158 g)

Samsung Galaxy S7 edge

Samsung Galaxy S7 edge

Dimensions

5.94 x 2.86 x 0.3 inches

150.9 x 72.6 x 7.7 mm

Weight

5.54 oz (157 g)

To see the phones in real size or compare them with other models, visit our Visual Phone Size Comparison page



Display

Same old, same old AMOLED advantages and mishaps


Move on, people, nothing to see here, just your run-of-the-mill 5.7” Super AMOLED display with 1080x1920 pixels. We can't scoff at the resolution as it is perfectly enough and allows for longer battery life, but we can whine about the viewing angles. The color shifts to overly cold and blueish with the slightest tilt of the phone, which, if you are coming from an LCD panel, can be pretty annoying.

Other than than that, if you run the Galaxy A7's display in Basic mode, it will exhibit credible colors with tamed saturation levels. In the default Adaptive mode, however, the phone is becoming your typical loud AMOLED with flashy, overzealous colors. The screen is bright enough, and with low reflectance ratio, so it is comfortable to view outside.

The A7 also has ‘Always-on Display’ mode that shows you the time, date and the type of missed notifications even when your screen is locked (but not the actual notifications). The letters are well contrasted and easy to see, but be warned – this will have a noticeable impact on battery life.



FEATURED VIDEO

17 Comments

1. donrox

Posts: 201; Member since: Jul 18, 2014

Why is there a lot of information missing from this review?

8. Cat97

Posts: 1890; Member since: Mar 02, 2017

This would imply that you have seen the full version of this review elsewhere ?

9. MomoSimon

Posts: 25; Member since: Feb 23, 2017

I think because of A7 2017 has almost the same spec as A5 2017, only screen size and battery. And A5 2017 has already been review. *Sorry for my bad english

2. Mr.mobile

Posts: 130; Member since: Mar 09, 2017

Where is full review phonearena

3. Cat97

Posts: 1890; Member since: Mar 02, 2017

Very nice phone, but I just hate 2.5D glass screens which kill the possibility of an edge-to-edge screen protector for the sake of a gimmicky design, not even a true curved screen. I hate Apple for starting this stupid trend. At least LG did something about it with the G6, hopefully other models will follow.

7. TerryTerius unregistered

Well I'm not disagreeing with you, you made me realize I have not actually used a screen protector in nearly 3 years.

16. euler74

Posts: 2; Member since: Mar 15, 2016

Bro, there are curved screen protectors available.

4. Zack_2014

Posts: 677; Member since: Mar 25, 2014

Hope this battery life comes on the S8 considering it's gonna have a small battery.

6. trojan_horse

Posts: 5868; Member since: May 06, 2016

"Hope this battery life comes on the S8 considering it's gonna have a small battery." Also consider that the S8 will have a higher resolution display too, along with a more power-hungry SoC that the one in this A7(2017).

5. phonearenarocks

Posts: 606; Member since: Mar 26, 2015

I have seen this phone in store and believe me, there is no "Color temperature shifts when tilting the display" issue, this has been just mentioned because you know, ahem ahem, our Captain here -> "Reads the website name as iPhoneArena, flies away".

10. MroziQ

Posts: 33; Member since: Jul 02, 2015

The fact is that this phone is just ugly (especially in comparison to A5 2016).

11. R-vjn

Posts: 301; Member since: Jan 07, 2013

For a bit more I could get an S7 with much powerful chipset, a better camera, a better display and a better overall package. And PA gives this phone an 8..!

12. arming

Posts: 65; Member since: Jul 23, 2016

will waiting for camera review of a7 . such a nice phone with crappy camera is very doubful.

13. brasstax

Posts: 541; Member since: Apr 16, 2014

Another very poor and half baked article by PA, the second one being the LG G6 review. Where are the screen test results? Where are the benchmark scores? Where are the battery life test results? Is this some kind of ongoing joke?

15. Sondae

Posts: 291; Member since: Jan 02, 2013

With this price you can get high end phone type like one plus3 or xiaomi mi5. Crappy camera doesnt have OIS not 4k and not so good chipset with this price yet it get an 8, while LG G6 gets only 8.7 lol.

17. cleo650

Posts: 1; Member since: Jun 06, 2017

I am really not happy with this phone from day 1. I have to restart this phone more than my old black berry. My old Note 2 is really the best I ever had. Loosing connection to my internet and freezing most of the time. Going back to my old phone would not recommend this make to anybody maybe I got a dud phone.

18. Stomance

Posts: 2; Member since: Dec 29, 2017

Don't ever buy Samsung, they have the worst Customer service, when you have a warranty issues, you have to wait and wait send email after email wait 24 to 72 HR for them to contact you. They never do and then you have to start all over. Get a different phone and Tablet because when they stop working after 3 months you have to wait 3 month more just to get it fixed thats if you get lucky.
Galaxy A7 (2017)
  • Display 5.7" 1080 x 1920 pixels
  • Camera 16 MP / 16 MP front
  • Processor Samsung Exynos 7 Octa, Octa-core, 1900 MHz
  • Storage 32 GB + microSDXC
  • Battery 3600 mAh(23h 3G talk time)

Latest Stories

This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. You can order presentation-ready copies for distribution to your colleagues, clients or customers at https://www.parsintl.com/phonearena or use the Reprints & Permissions tool that appears at the bottom of each web page. Visit https://www.parsintl.com/ for samples and additional information.