Samsung is expanding its Galaxy A series with new models, including the A40 and A70. These midranges have affordable suggested retail prices and interesting specifications, including large OLED screens. In this Samsung Galaxy A40 preview, we take a closer look at the A40 and A70.
First impression of the new A series
Last month, Samsung released the Galaxy A50, a midrange model with a large battery and a fingerprint scanner under the screen. The manufacturer is now expanding its Galaxy A series with the Galaxy A10 and A20e as inexpensive replacements for the Galaxy J line, while the expensive A80 has a front- filling display and tilting camera.
The new A40 and A70 are real midrange and have suggested retail prices of 249 and 399 euros respectively. The Samsung Galaxy A40 is already for sale, the A70 is expected to follow at the end of April. Both devices are available in trendy colors and run on Android 9.0 (Pie) with the OneUI shell from Samsung. This software shell is optimized for large screens and comes with two pre-installed apps (Netflix and Facebook).
Check our Samsung Galaxy A40 preview
The Samsung Galaxy A40 is in terms of specifications and price between the Galaxy A20e and A50 and has a similar appearance. The shiny plastic case feels sturdy but is smooth, so a case can be handy. Fun is that the back shows colored effects when light falls on it. On the back are a fingerprint scanner and a barely excellent double camera.
The 5.9 inch OLED screen has a notch and a narrow border at the bottom. The display looks very nice, with vivid colors and high contrast. The sharpness is perfectly fine due to the full HD resolution. Where most Galaxy A models have a large screen, the A40 is handier. That is nice if you are looking for a smartphone that you can control (largely) with one hand. At the bottom of the device is a USB-C connection that quickly charges the 3100 mAh battery. The battery capacity seems sufficient for a day of use, although I have not been able to test this yet.
The double camera on the back consists of a 16-megapixel lens and a 5-megapixel wide-angle lens. The former seems to take great photos, although the exposure is sometimes a problem. Looking at the price point of the device you can’t expect miracles, but the snapshots are good enough for social media or a photo album. The wide-angle lens captures a wider area of the environment. Handy, but the photo quality is noticeably not equal to the regular camera. The colors, correct exposure and amount of detail are less.
The front is a 25-megapixel front camera. He makes sharp selfies and has different positions, including a beauty mode. Whether your face will actually become more beautiful, however, is debatable.
The smartphone runs on an unknown processor with 4GB of memory. In our extensive review, we look in more detail at the performance, but during my first introduction, the A40 had no trouble starting, running and changing apps. The storage memory is large enough at 64GB to store a lot of apps and photos. A micro SD slot is also available.
Galaxy A70 has a huge screen
Pick up the Galaxy A70 and you will immediately notice how large a 6.7-inch screen is. The device is – just like the Galaxy A80 – on the hefty side and for many cannot be operated with one hand. The edges around the screen are quite narrow, with a small notch at the top for the 32-megapixel selfie camera. The display looks sharp due to the full HD resolution. The OLED panel also provides a color image with high contrast.
The plastic back feels solid but somewhat cheap because it is smooth. The shiny finish is also a fingerprint magnet. Special is the subtle rainbow effect on the black model that I could work with. If there is enough light on the back then you see all kinds of colors, which also change when you turn the device. Not everyone will be a fan of it, but personally, I think it’s a nice detail. There is a triple camera module on the back that barely protrudes – so nice.
Large battery charges quickly
For a smartphone that costs 399 euros, the Galaxy A70 has strikingly impressive specifications. The working memory measures a generous 6GB and there is 128GB (expandable) storage space; both as much as on the much more expensive Galaxy S10e. Also interesting is the optical fingerprint scanner under the screen, although I have not been able to test it properly. The A50 has the same scanner and it recently received a (much needed) update to improve the scanner. In our Galaxy A70 review, we will, therefore, elaborate on the quality and reliability of the fingerprint scanner.
Striking on the Galaxy A70 is its large battery of 4500 mAh. For comparison: the almost equally large iPhone Xs Max has a 3300 mAh battery. The expectation is that the Samsung smartphone will effortlessly last for a day and a half, something I obviously couldn’t test during my first impression.
Equally special is the speed at which the battery charges. Where iPhones and the Samsung Galaxy S10 models charge with up to 15W, the much cheaper Galaxy A70 supports charging with 25W. This means that the battery will be charged faster. Unfortunately, wireless charging is not possible. Incidentally, the more expensive Galaxy A80 also charges with 25W.
As mentioned, the A70 has three cameras on the back. The primary camera has a resolution of 32 megapixels and is accompanied by a 5-megapixel depth sensor and an 8-megapixel wide-angle lens. The photos I took in my short test period looked good, although the portrait mode does not seem to work quite right yet. Samsung indicated that the software will be improved before the device appears in stores.
Conclusion Samsung Galaxy A40 and A70 preview
With the Galaxy A40 and A70, Samsung enters the crowded middle segment, where it is already active with the Galaxy A50. The smartphones have a lot of competition, but still, know how to distinguish themselves with their price/quality ratio. The A40 (249 euros) is a handy and ‘just right’ device with a competitive price. That makes him interesting for a large target group. The A70 is primarily intended for those looking for a huge smartphone. Combined with the decent hardware and price of 399 euros, it is an attractive model for phablet lovers.