The Samsung Galaxy A5 is back , a 5.2-inch mid-range mobile with a premium terminal design . A team that combines metal on its sides with glass on both the back and front. And all this in a very thin 7.3-millimeter body, which makes it one of the most elegant models you'll find on the market. Among its main novelties is the Full HD resolution of its panel or a 13 megapixel rear camera with an excellent aperture of f / 1.9 and optical image stabilization for more stable shots. But above all, the great attraction of this team is in its battery. Nothing less than 2,900 milliamps, almost the same capacity as the Samsung Galaxy S6 edge + . This model can already be found on the market for a price of 430 euros. We have had the opportunity to test it in depth, we tell you our impressions.
We already have the complete test of the new Samsung Galaxy A5 2017
Elegance on all four sides
Design with metal sides and curved Gorilla Glass on the front and back, very thin body and the option to get this terminal in three shades
The Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016) is an eye-catching phone right out of the box. Basically, Samsung brings us the design of its highest range without having to pay 600 euros. And it is that this smartphone combines the metal of its sides with the glass both in the back and in the front. Its 2.5D curved Gorilla Glass 4 glass gives it a very elegant appearance and reinforces its resistance against bumps or scratches. On a personal level, I think the Korean company has done an excellent job on the case . The mirror effect is remarkable and gives it a distinguished touch, but its great success is in preventing our fingerprints from remaining on the surface.. In this way, we do not have that "dirty" look that, for example, we have discovered in models like the Sony Xperia Z5 Premium .
We have tested the gold configuration of the Galaxy A5 (2016), but it is also available in black and white colors . One of the details that we liked the most is that the golden color also appears in a thin line surrounding the button to return to the main screen, and in the buttons to turn on / off the screen and to increase and decrease the volume. Another element that could not be missing in a high-mid-range model is the inclusion of a fingerprint reader. In this case, we have it integrated into the start button itself. Its operation is quite agile and precise, but here we have to put a but. The Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016) does not yet have the Android 6.0 Marshmallow operating system installed, which greatly limits the practical applications of the reader. It is expected that the update to the latest version of the Google platform will be carried out in the coming months.
The Korean company has done an excellent job on the case. The mirror effect is remarkable and gives it a distinguished touch, but its great success is in preventing our fingerprints from remaining on the surface.
The measurements of the Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016) stand at 144.8 x 71 x 7.3 millimeters. We liked that the company proposed a narrower and somewhat longer body to make single-handed operations more comfortable. Of course, although the equipment is well balanced when holding it, it gives us the impression that it is heavier than it should (155 grams) . This weight places it at the same level as the Sony Xperia Z5 (154 grams), but above models like the Samsung Galaxy S6 (138 grams).. In the end, we will not notice it in normal use, but if we usually use the mobile with one hand it can become annoying after holding it for a while. Another point that has left us some doubt is the tendency of this equipment to heat up , both when performing more complex tasks and when it is charging for a while. Although it is not a climb that becomes annoying, it is very evident.
Comparative table of weights and thicknesses
|Samsung Galaxy A5||5.2 inch||7.3 mm||155 grams|
|Samsung Galaxy S6||5.1 inch||6.8 mm||138 grams|
|Huawei P8||5.2 inch||6.4 mm||144 grams|
|Sony Xperia Z5||5.2 inch||7.3 mm||154 grams|
|Samsung Galaxy S6 edge||5.1 inch||7 millimeters||132 grams|
The Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016) incorporates a tray that is used to insert both the NanoSIM type card and a MicroSD card. In this case, the opening is used through a clip that is included with the phone. I am not very in favor of this type of system (after all, we will not always have the clip or an earring at hand) but it has become the most repeated option in mid-high and high-end mobile phones.
Large capacity battery: solving pending accounts
2,900 milliamp battery, video playback capacity up to 14 hours, fast charge technology
There is no room for doubt. The battery has been, for years, one of the great handicaps of modern mobiles. And it is not that Samsung is, precisely, one of the companies that has been doing the worst in this field. On the contrary, models like the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 opened the closure to be able to use your phone throughout the day without having to look for an outlet when returning home. However, there is a feeling that there is still a long way to go. And all the information indicates that this year autonomy is going to be a key aspect in the new launches.
The Samsung Galaxy A5 is capable of offering us up to 16 hours of WiFi browsing
Proof of this is the Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016) . This terminal brings us a 2,900 milliamp battery , a capacity much higher than the 2,300 milliamp of the first Samsung Galaxy A5 (launched at the end of 2014). The figures are not deceiving. The new Galaxy is able to offer up to 16 hours of navigation WiFi (compared to 11 hours of the previous model) or up to 14 hours of video playback . These are fantastic figures that can be easily translated into two days of normal use without looking for a plug. We have subjected the terminal to the battery tests of AnTuTu Tester, with a fantastic score of 10102 points. It is a figure thatIt doubles that of the Sony Xperia Z5 Premium (4870 points), a sample of the power of the Galaxy A5 in this regard. By the way, for users who are in a hurry with a very low battery percentage, the Ultra power saving mode can be activated, with which the screen color is changed to grayscale and connectivity options are limited. Thanks to this, the time of use of the telephone is multiplied up to ten times.
From left to right, Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016) and Sony Xperia Z5 Premium battery test results
Super AMOLED screen with Full HD resolution
5.2-inch panel, Full HD resolution, Super AMOLED technology for vibrant colors and good brightness levels
The Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016) repeats panel with Super AMOLED technology . These types of screens developed by Samsung stand out for their ability to display vibrant colors and for their high levels of brightness. But in addition, they are also combined with greater energy efficiency than traditional LCD panels. These advantages are also found in the new Galaxy A5, which can be used without problems even under direct sunlight. We also really liked the touch response of the panel, with an experience similar to that of a high-end terminal of the brand.
But beyond these considerations, the advancement of your screen is in two points: size and resolution. The Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016) gets a bit bigger with a size of 5.2 inches , and it reaches a Full HD resolution of 1,920 x 1,080 pixels. The result: higher level of detail in specific content such as videos, movies or games that look more powerful graphics. Without a doubt, an important step forward compared to the first Galaxy A5 (with a 5-inch screen and HD resolution of 1,280 x 720 pixels).
Photo camera with image stabilizer
13 megapixel camera, image stabilizer, excellent aperture of f / 1.9
One of the points that Samsung has improved in this model (compared to the first Galaxy A5) is the main camera. This lens maintains the same maximum resolution of 13 megapixels, but takes its aperture up to f / 1.9. That allows the sensor to capture more light and take better photos in dark environments. In addition, we have Optical Image Stabilization (OIS). Thanks to this, the number of photos that are blurred will be greatly reduced. By the way, photos with 13 megapixel resolution have to be taken in a more square 4: 3 format. If we want 16: 9 panoramic photos, the highest available resolution is 9.6 megapixels.
Samsung's fast mode allows us to start the camera even with the screen off by just pressing the start button twice
Nor could it miss the inclusion of an LED flash and an HDR mode . This mode works by taking several photos of the same scene (as if we were taking a burst) and then automatically superimposing them. The result is more vivid and defined colors, which make it an excellent tool for creating curious compositions or taking photos of sunsets. For users who want greater control of their photos there is the Pro mode , from where you can access controls such as exposure to light (up to ISO-800) or white balance .
We also have a burst mode to take several photos of a past or specific night mode for night shots. In addition to the main camera modes, Samsung offers us the option of downloading new modes from its official store, such as one to take snapshots of sports activity or another to create animated gifs.
As for video recording, reaches resolution Full HD 1,920 x 1,080 pixels . The front camera has a resolution of 5 megapixels and a specific mode for taking selfies . Its quality is at the level of what is expected in a mid-high range mobile. In addition, one of the most positive surprises is that it also lets us record video in Full HD resolution. While we are recording with any of the cameras at any time we can press on the "Capture" buttonto take a photo. The voice and gesture controls for taking photos also stand out, making both selfies and group photos much easier. Overall, the camera interface of the Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016) has a lot of quality and is intuitive and easy to use.
Octa-core processor, 2GB RAM, 16GB available space
The Samsung Galaxy A5 is a terminal that has a technical list of specifications typical of the mid-range. This includes an eight-core processor rated at 1.6GHz per core , along with 2GB of RAM. A set that works very well for normal use of the computer, and that has pleasantly surprised us when it comes to facing the model against one of the most powerful games on the Android platform , Asphalt 8: Airborne . And is that the fluidity with which we have been able to handle this game leads us to think that the Samsung Galaxy A5 will run without problems the vast majority of titles on this platform. Yes, the2GB RAM can become a problem if we are used to using many open processes at the same time.
Screenshot of Asphalt 8: Airborne on the Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016)
We have subjected this equipment to Geekbench 3 and AnTuTu Benchmark tests. Here are the results.
Samsung Galaxy A5 2016 results on Geekbench 3 and AnTuTu Benchmark
On the other hand, the Galaxy A5 (2016) has an internal capacity of 16 GB . The available space is around 10.8 GB . One of the advantages that this model brings us is the option to expand this capacity through a MicroSD memory card (up to 128 GB). In addition, users can also opt for an online storage system such as Dropbox or Google Drive.
TouchWiz applications and interface
Android 5.1.1 Lollipop, lighter TouchWiz interface, Office applications (Word, Excel, Powerpoint)
As we said before, the operating system chosen for the Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016) is Android 5.1.1. Lollipop. Here we miss that the company had opted for Android 6.0 Marshmallow as a base , but it is likely to launch the update in the coming months. What we do enjoy is Samsung's own interface , TouchWiz . In a move that seems like a great success, the Korean company has greatly reduced the number of pre-installed appsthat come with their releases from the last few months. In this way, a faster and more agile environment is achieved and we are the ones who can say which applications we want to have on our mobile. Among the advanced functions we would like to highlight the quick access to the camera from the lock screen itself. To do this, just press twice in a row on the start button.
On the other hand, we have several gestures to perform different actions on the phone. Thus, if we pass our hand over the screen with the gesture of turning the page of a book, we will take a screenshot. And to silence a call or an alarm, just place your hand on the panel or turn the terminal over. Samsung has also introduced a panel with quick settings to bring the elements that interest us most to the fore.We can choose up to nine different options that will be displayed on the settings screen. For users who want to personalize their phone, there is the option to set various themes that we can download from the Samsung platform. Precisely, another of TouchWiz's strengths is in the deployment of its own application store with some interesting titles, such as a specific mode for children or an app to use the Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016) in the car.
It is one of the most important bets of Samsung for its interface. Word , Excel, OneNote, PowerPoint, and Skype word processor come pre-installed with the phone. Microsoft office automation applications have a fairly intuitive and neat interface and offer many of the options found in the desktop application. Personally, I find the most complete and easy-to-use apps for creating texts, presentations or spreadsheets on the Android market. In addition, the possibility of working with the documents that we have saved on the computer in OneDrive opens up many possibilities. On the negative side, in my personal experience they are apps thatThey tend to fail from time to time and that becomes a handicap when we use them more intensively.
The Samsung Galaxy A5 2016 allows you to encrypt the contents of the mobile phone and the MicroSD card to prevent them from falling into the wrong hands
In addition to the use of a fingerprint reader, the Korean company has reinforced this device with several security options that can give us a lot of play in the company environment. Among these options is the KNOX security platform , which we can install at any time to reinforce data security. This tool creates a separate container for business applications that prevents them from being infected. It also highlights the option to encrypt the content of the device so that a password is required each time the phone is turned on. The same can be done with the MicroSD memory card.
Smart Manager is a very useful tool that works in the background to improve phone performance. For example, it is capable of analyzing the operation of different apps and optimizing them to improve autonomy ( although this is already an outstanding point of the Galaxy A5). From here we can also access a RAM memory manager and a memory cleaner to erase those files that are not necessary. Finally, the Smart Manager brings us an antivirus that analyzes the device in search of threats.
Flipboard and Samsung S Club
One of the apps that appear pre-installed on the Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016) is Flipboard . For users who do not know it yet, it is a news portal that appears by dragging your finger across the main screen. This portal allows us to choose the topics in which we are most interested and aggregates the information that comes from different media on the web. Finally, we would like to highlight Samsung S Club , a platform with exclusive content for users of a Galaxy S terminal. From here you can access different promotions and offers.
High speed 4G connection, NFC and compatibility with Samsung Pay, WiFi AC
Within the field of connections, one of the aspects in which Samsung has wanted to influence the most is the compatibility of this model with its Samsung Pay payment platform through NFC. This tool allows us to use the mobile as a card. Its great success is that it simulates the magnetic stripe of a credit card , so it is compatible with the vast majority of payment terminals in stores. The process will be simple. Simply associate one of our compatible cards with the phone, bring the terminal closer to the payment terminal and accept the transaction with the fingerprint reader. At the moment, Samsung Pay is not available in Spain but it should arrive throughout the first quarter.
Samsung Pay will become an easy way to pay for your purchases with your mobile in most stores
The compatibility of the Samsung Galaxy A (2016) with WiFi AC could not be missing either . This network protocol allows us to connect simultaneously in both the 2.4 GHz bandwidth and the 5 GHz bandwidth. At a practical level, this translates into a more stable and faster Internet connection experience. . Of course, you must have a router compatible with this technology. Regarding mobile connectivity, the new Galaxy A is compatible with 4G LTE CAT 6 networks. With this type of network, maximum speeds of up to 300 Mbps download (and 50 Mbps upload) are achieved . The Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016) uses a NanoSIM card . Connections are completed with Bluetooth 4.1and GPS . Charging is done through a MicroUSB 2.0 port .
Price and reviews
430 euros, battery at the height of the largest, good camera
The Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016) can already be found on the market for a price of 430 euros . In short, we are facing a model that greatly enriches Samsung's mid-range. Its premium design and characteristics bring us a perfect team for users looking for a good terminal without paying 600 euros. Of course, it is still a considerable investment . Among the points that we liked the most is, of course, the excellent 2,900 milliamp battery. Guaranteed autonomy for long trips and trips. The design is really very attractive(It has lines very similar to the Samsung Galaxy S6) and has nothing to envy the big names in the market. Of course, it has a tendency to get hot when loaded or when using demanding apps that can become annoying at specific times. For the rest, this mobile has many points in its favor, such as its good definition screen (Full HD) or a camera with an aperture of f / 1.9 to improve our daily photos.
Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016)
|Model||Samsung Galaxy A5 from 2016|
|Resolution||Full HD 1,920 x 1,080 pixels|
|Density||424 dots per inch|
|Protection||2.5D Gorilla Glass 4|
|Dimensions||144.8 x 71 x 7.3 mm|
|materials||Glass on the front and back and metal on the sides|
|Colors||Black / Gold / White|
|Fingerprint reader||Yes, on the on / off button|
|Resolution||13 megapixels (4: 9 aspect ratio)|
9.6 megapixels (16: 9 widescreen)
|Flash||Yes, LED Flash|
|Video||Full HD video recording|
|Sensor and modes||Pro mode|
|Opening||f / 1.9|
|ISO||ISO-100, ISO-200, ISO-400, ISO-800|
|Front camera||5 megapixel resolution|
Selfie Mode, Panorama Mode, Burst Mode, Night Mode
Full HD video recording
|Others||Quick access to camera, voice trigger, gesture control|
|Formats||Audio Playback Formats: MP3, M4A, 3GA, AAC, OGG, OGA, WAV, WMA, AMR, AWB, FLAC, MID, MIDI, XMF, MXMF, IMY, RTTTL, RTX, OTA|
Video Playback Formats: MP4, M4V, 3GP, 3G2, WMV, ASF, AVI, FLV, MKV, WEBM
|Sound||Stereo, speaker next to MicroUSB port|
Quick access to the camera with two taps
|Operating system||Android 5.1.1 Lollipop|
|Extra applications||TouchWiz interface|
Microsoft apps (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, OneDrive and Skype)
Samsung Pay (available during the first quarter)
Samsung S Club
|CPU processor||Proprietary eight-core 1.6GHz processor per core|
|Graphics processor (GPU)||Mali T-720|
|Power tests||AnTuTu: 39090points|
Geekbench: 3484 points
|Internal memory||16 GigaBytes (10.8 GB free)|
|Extension||Yes, with MicroSD card up to 128 GigaBytes|
Online storage systems (Dropbox, Box, OneDrive, Google Drive)
|Mobile Network||3G (HSDPA at 21 Mbps / HSUPA at 5.76 Mbps)|
4G LTE (up to 300 Mbps downstream and 50 Mbps upstream)
|Wifi||802.11 a / b / g / n 2.4 + 5GHz|
|Audio||3.5 mm minijack|
2G GSM: GSM850, GSM900, DCS1800, PCS1900
3G UMTS: B1 (2100), B2 (1900), B5 (850), B8 (900)
4G FDD LTE: B1 (2100), B3 (1800), B5 (850), B7 (2600), B8 (900), B20 (800)
4G TDD LTE: B40 (2300)
|Others||Create WiFi zones|
|Duration in use||Up to 14 hours of browsing on 3G|
Up to 14 hours of browsing on 4G
Up to 16 hours of surfing on WiFi
Up to 14 hours of video playback
Up to 75 hours of music playback Up to 16 hours of talk time on 3G
|AnTutu Tester tests||10,102 points|