Interface and Functionality


For experienced Samsung users, the Galaxy A9 will be nothing new: it comes with the newest TouchWiz interface on top of Android 5.1. You heard that right – there is no Android 6 on the A9, which is a glaring omission. With the the A9 being such a high-profile phone, however, I'm hopeful Samsung will not take too long to update it.

Anyway, the Galaxy A9's user interface is colorful and lively. It moves quickly enough, though it tends to be somewhat jerky and not as fluid as the software experiences found on some rival products like those from HTC, Motorola, or Apple.

The Galaxy A9 is on the clunky side, so using it will require at least two hands and some extra attention, so that it won't accidentally slip from your hand.

So how's typing on a display this big? Unfortunately, typing with a single thumb is next to impossible – you'll need Shaq-level hands to pull it off. The upside is typing with two hands in portrait mode is more convenient than it is on smaller handsets. However, for me and my medium-sized hands, typing in landscape mode was quite bit of a stretch. Of course, since this is TouchWiz we're talking about, there's a ton of added functionality to the stock keyboard, like a relatively quick-to-access track pad, built-in T9 keyboard that makes single-thumb typing possible, large selection of emoticons, and easy access to attaching all sorts of items to your messages, including pictures, video, audio, calendar notes, map locations, etc. Truly hardcore stuff.

Processor and Memory


Ticking inside the Galaxy A9 is the intriguing Snapdragon 652 chipset, with its octa-core CPU and Adreno 510 GPU, both of which are actually quite capable. The A9 with its Snapdragon 652 can almost rival the performance output of top smartphones from last year, such as the Galaxy S6 and Note 5. Which means it's quite powerful.


AnTuTu Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) 63153.66
Samsung Galaxy A8 48411
Samsung Galaxy A7 (2016) 34395.33
Samsung Galaxy Note 5 67207
Vellamo Metal Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) 2575.66
Samsung Galaxy A8 1563
Samsung Galaxy A7 (2016) 1094.66
Samsung Galaxy Note 5 2532
Vellamo Browser Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) 4539.33
Samsung Galaxy A8 3874
Samsung Galaxy A7 (2016) 1982
Samsung Galaxy Note 5 5476
JetStream Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) 44.13
Samsung Galaxy Note 5 50.612
GFXBench T-Rex HD on-screen Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) 31
Samsung Galaxy A8 30
Samsung Galaxy A7 (2016) 14
Samsung Galaxy Note 5 37
GFXBench Manhattan 3.1 on-screen Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) 9.3
Samsung Galaxy A8 14
Samsung Galaxy A7 (2016) 5.76
Samsung Galaxy Note 5 15
Basemark OS II Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) 1462
Samsung Galaxy A8 1093
Samsung Galaxy A7 (2016) 827.66
Samsung Galaxy Note 5 1765
Geekbench 3 single-core Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) 1376.33
Samsung Galaxy A8 937
Samsung Galaxy A7 (2016) 676.3
Samsung Galaxy Note 5 1431
Geekbench 3 multi-core Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) 4670.33
Samsung Galaxy A8 3379
Samsung Galaxy A7 (2016) 3013
Samsung Galaxy Note 5 4717


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42 Comments

1. EcoCare

Posts: 444; Member since: Jul 30, 2014

I don't understand why an opinion such as "very, very big" should be listed as a con... ...on the other hand "massive screen" is listed in the pros.

4. redmd

Posts: 1935; Member since: Oct 26, 2011

True. Sometimes I don't know what PA has been taking lately.

13. siddharthayadav202

Posts: 286; Member since: Apr 23, 2016

Typical PA

17. Landon

Posts: 1245; Member since: May 07, 2015

This phone is roughly 1/8" taller and wider than the iPhone 6S Plus. None of that terminology was used when describing the 6S Plus in its review. You're better than this, PA.

32. robocopvn

Posts: 504; Member since: Mar 10, 2010

You can check my comment below. And please stop wishing PA is better than this. I stop doing this from 2012 :))

35. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

No they aren't better than this. Anyway, screw them. We have a glimpse of the Note 6. You know these guys are bigots and hypocrites. As much as the iPhone 4/4s were fingerprint magnets, it was never said. As big and oversized the 6/6s Plus' are, this wasn't considered a con as you stated. iPhoneArena, is never gonna change. That's why John V left.

21. zeeBomb

Posts: 2318; Member since: Aug 14, 2014

A scores I can tolerate with. No complaints here.

31. robocopvn

Posts: 504; Member since: Mar 10, 2010

This show the subjective opinion from PA. Just see how they tell the Iphone have a sleek design with small bezels =DD Screen size is personal preference. I never understand why this could be a pros or a cons. It's just the fact. However, the phone with same 5.5 inches screen as the others but employs the biggest chassis is 100% the cons (and they don't mention it). Yes, I mean the fruit bigger phone =DDD.

2. aikoo

Posts: 129; Member since: Feb 27, 2016

- Very, very big But are those bezels?.. (The phones not for you.) - Screen colors could be more natural Bud, it's called AMOLED. - TouchWiz needs to be more fluid In what way?... Swipping your finger on the home screen doesn't do anything IF that was what you were doing. The thing has 3GB of RAM - Comes with Android 5.1, and not 6 But is the security patch up to date and is the OS stable?

16. UglyFrank

Posts: 2194; Member since: Jan 23, 2014

They review the accuracy in a mode that isn't designed for accuracy...... Which speaks levels about their bias

19. kiko007

Posts: 7493; Member since: Feb 17, 2016

Dude Android Marshmallow came out last October. No phone should be shipping with Lollipop at this point, regardless of security patches. If this was anyone but Samsung, everyone here would be on thier ass for taking so long to get 6.0 software on their devices.

23. Andrewtst

Posts: 696; Member since: Jan 25, 2009

I accept all your comment back except last one. Come on! No phone shall shipped with Android 5.1 now. it is time move over to Android 6. Android 6 is extremely stable. No issue there.

30. sarcastic_nerd unregistered

AMOLED has no relation with accuracy. S6, note 5 and s7 have more accurate screens than almost all the displays.

3. donrox

Posts: 201; Member since: Jul 18, 2014

Pro: Massive Screen Con: Very, very big Make up your mind. is the size a pro or a con for you? IMO it shouldn't be mentioned as either. the size of the device is what the manufacturer intended it to be based on the targeted audience. it isn't a criterion upon which a device rating should be given!

5. Arch_Fiend

Posts: 3951; Member since: Oct 03, 2015

My thoughts exactly mate.

7. nebula

Posts: 1009; Member since: Feb 20, 2015

They try to be ultra liberal but at the end they piss off a lot of people :)

6. abdoualgeria

Posts: 928; Member since: Jul 27, 2015

How can a9 get 10h 10m with 4000mh , and the a7 9h 57m with 3300 mah I cant understand you're battery tests anymore!

36. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

They don't either.

8. Shocky unregistered

Nobody understands them.

9. DechyX

Posts: 156; Member since: May 16, 2011

I have this phone and I think it's pretty awesome. A love larger screen phones because I have bigger hands so it's a good fit. I took this device on a trip to Ireland and it performed quite well. I used it all day taking photos, posting them to social media, searching for restaurants and attractions on Google and the battery took it all like a champ. Ending each night around 2/3am with 35-40% battery. Phone should get an 8/9. Biggest gripe is the OK camera, but it can be amazing with HDR, steady hand, and patience

10. legiloca

Posts: 1676; Member since: Nov 11, 2014

This review is the most confusing one I've ever seen in this site's history. I don't see any deep cons at all for this to be given a 7.5

12. tech2

Posts: 3487; Member since: Oct 26, 2012

The biggest con is, its not an iPhone.

18. ibend

Posts: 6747; Member since: Sep 30, 2014

1. give low score on good phone 2. lots of people come to complaint in comment section 3. fanboy wars mean more traffic to this page 4. .... 5. profit

20. kiko007

Posts: 7493; Member since: Feb 17, 2016

Smartest comment here by far. +1

24. Coconut00

Posts: 485; Member since: Jan 13, 2015

Ray S. reviewed it. 7.5 = 9 with any other reviewer.

11. Shocky unregistered

Nice battery life, large average phone overall with a poor camera. Not sure the score is deserved, 6.5 would have been my score for this.

14. siddharthayadav202

Posts: 286; Member since: Apr 23, 2016

6.5? Camera is the only con. What other problems do you see?

28. Shocky unregistered

It's an overpriced mid ranger, why should it score higher?

15. EcoCare

Posts: 444; Member since: Jul 30, 2014

I wouldn't say the camera is poor, even GSMArena says it's close to Note 5 in daylight scenes. Also, it has good performance from the Snapdragon 652. I don't really trust real-life situations performed by reviewers; smoothness is subjective. I would give it 8.

29. Shocky unregistered

8 or above should be for high end devices or exceptional mid rangers, this is neither.
Galaxy A9 (2016)
  • Display 6.0" 1080 x 1920 pixels
  • Camera 13 MP / 8 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 652, Octa-core, 1800 MHz
  • Storage 32 GB + microSDXC
  • Battery 4000 mAh

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