Samsung Galaxy A50 Review; Samsung’s Mid-Range Champion in Years! - TeknoGadyet
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Sunday, June 9, 2019

Samsung Galaxy A50 Review; Samsung’s Mid-Range Champion in Years!

INTRODUCTION:

Samsung has always been perceived in the past as a top tier brand with accompanying top-end pricing. But, that was before, as the Korean mobile maker is now very competitive when it comes to the price-to-specs ratio of their devices. And for us, the Samsung Galaxy A50 is arguably the most well-balanced Samsung mid-range smartphone to date!

Samsung Galaxy A50 Review; Samsung’s Mid-Range Champion in Years!
Samsung Galaxy A50 Review; Samsung’s Mid-Range Champion in Years!

The Samsung Galaxy A50 was introduced in the Philippines around March of this year, along with its other sibling, the Galaxy A30. And, even though the Galaxy A70 is also out in the market, not to mention the imminent arrival of the Galaxy A80, we still strongly believed that the Galaxy A50 is really a good buy, not only within the Samsung family, but also among other brands. Read on our full review to know why!


PHYSICAL:

The Galaxy A50 shares lots of physical similarities with the A30, in fact, both devices have the same dimensions. Their outlines are identical and measure 158.5mm x 74.7mm x 7.7mm. Both also have screens that measure 6.4 inches diagonally, which Samsung calls as the Infinity-U display, and are made of Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen panel. There is also a Corning Gorilla Glass 3 on top to protect it from everyday wear and tear, and if that's not enough, there is an added layer of protection in the form of plastic film.

Samsung Galaxy A50 Review - Front
Front

The screen-to-body ratio is around 91.6 percent, which is great, thanks to the minimized sides and top bezels. The display looks fabulous, it is vibrant with well-balanced color reproduction, and enough brightness, be it indoors or outdoors. The viewing angles are also excellent, allowing viewers to enjoy any content, whichever side they are looking at. And, if that is not enough, the A50 also has extensive display settings, from enabling the blue light filter to adjusting white balance's RGB values.

Samsung Galaxy A50 Review - Display Settings
Display Settings

One of the many differences of the A50 to the A30 is the lack of rear-mounted fingerprint reader, that is because the former uses a sensor that is embedded within the display. However, it is an optical sensor, and not an ultrasonic one as found in the Galaxy S10 family. That said, unlocking the phone using the in-display fingerprint sensor is not as fast when compared to the high-end Samsung phones, and even when compared to those found on OPPO, Vivo, and OnePlus devices. Based on our test, it usually takes about 1 second to unlock the phone, whereas the competitors do it almost in an instant. Nonetheless, setting it up is fairly easy, and once set up is done, it is pretty consistent unlocking the phone. And, if you are wondering, unlocking the phone is slightly faster using Face Recognition, just be sure to tick off the option where it says Stay on Lock Screen.

Samsung Galaxy A50 Review - Back
Back

Moving on to build quality, the Galaxy A50 looks and feels durable, even if it is mostly made of plastic. Yes, even the back panel that looks glass is also made of plastic with a glossy and reflective coating, which, by the way, is fingerprint and smudge magnet. The choice of material allows the A50 to be lighter than most phones with over 6-inch display at only 166 grams. For the sake of comparison, it is lighter than OPPO R17, which also has a 6.4-inch screen, that ticks 183 grams of the scale, as well as the Realme 3 that weighs 175 grams.

Although Samsung did not use 'premium' materials, the phone still has a nice physique and looks attractive. Thanks to the gradient design applied on its curved back. It is available in four colors, namely white, black, coral and blue, all of which give rainbow-like pattern when the light shines on the surface of the '3D glasstic' back panel.

Samsung Galaxy A50 Review - Sides
Sides

Looking through the right side, you will find the volume keys and the power button, they are positioned on the upper part, which makes reaching them while using one hand slightly awkward. On the opposite side, is where the tray for the two SIM cards and MicroSD card is located. The top holds the secondary microphone, while the bottom is very busy accommodating the 3.5mm audio jack, USB Type-C port, primary microphone, and single-firing loudspeaker.


Samsung Galaxy A50 Unboxing and Hands-On

Meanwhile, the retail package contains the unit itself, 15 watts fast charger, USB cable, earphones, eject pin, and paper documents. For more info, you can watch our Samsung Galaxy A50 Unboxing and Hands-On above.

See Also: Samsung Galaxy Tab A with S Pen (2019) Lands in PH


SOFTWARE:

The Samsung Galaxy A50 that we have for this review is a retail unit in the Philippines, it runs on Samsung One UI version 1.1 based on Android 9.0 Pie. The One UI is basically the same interface you can find in the Galaxy S10 series, it is easy to use with little to no learning curve needed.

Samsung Galaxy A50 Review - Software
Software

As we always say, proprietary skin separates one brand from the others, and gives the phone its own software identity. However, without a pure Android OS also means added pre-installed software. Thankfully, the A50 only comes with few pre-loaded apps that cannot be uninstalled such as the Microsoft Office Mobile, OneDrive, LinkedIn, and Game Launcher. Most of the other can be uninstalled like the Samsung Notes, Samsung Health, and Galaxy Wearable, or better yet, don't install them during the initial set-up.

Samsung Galaxy A50 Review - Samsung Members App
Samsung Members App

There is one app that for us gives real-life benefits, the Samsung Members App, wherein users can claim free food, and get discounts for products and services. Going back to the OneDrive, you can earn an additional 100GB of free storage once you signed in using your Microsoft account.

We will not go deeper into this section as Samsung provides a site wherein you can learn more about the One UI, you can find it at https://www.samsung.com/global/galaxy/apps/one-ui/


PERFORMANCE:

The Galaxy A series of devices have fantastic hardware in general, and we can say that this is a great improvement over the underwhelming internals that many consumers complain about the Galaxy J family. Again, for us, the Samsung Galaxy A50 has pretty solid hardware.

Samsung Galaxy A50 Review - CPU-Z Info
CPU-Z Info

It is powered by Samsung's very own Exynos 9610 chipset that is fabricated using the 10nm FinFET process, and composed of a total of 8 CPU cores (four 1.6GHz Cortex-A53 + four 2.3GHz Cortex-A73) and 3-core Mali-G72 graphics processing unit. There is a base model of 4GB RAM and 64GB storage, but the one being sold in the Philippines has bumped up memories, 6GB and 128GB to be exact. By the way, for those who might be asking, the available storage for users is 107GB.

As usual, we put the phone through our favorite benchmarking apps, and here are the results:

Antutu - 144,335
Geekbench - 1,681 (single core)
Geekbench - 5,402 (multi core)
Geekbench - 4,971 (RenderScript)
PC Mark - 6,322
3D Mark Sling Shot - 1,409
3D Mark Sling Shot Extreme - 1,313 (Vulkan)
3DMark Sling Shot Extreme - 1,385 (OpenGL ES 3.1)
3DMark Ice Storm Unlimited – 16,655
3DMark Ice Storm Extreme - Max

Samsung Galaxy A50 Review - Benchmark Scores
Benchmark Scores

For comparison purposes, the Antutu and Geekbench scores of the A20 are higher than the Realme 3 with Helio P60 chipset, however, the PC Mark and some 3D results are lower. Meanwhile, compare to OPPO R17 with Snapdragon 710, all scores are lower.

Samsung has done an excellent job optimizing the software and hardware to work harmoniously and give outstanding performance. We did not encounter any slowdown in our everyday use of the A50, even when we are playing high definition games such as PUBG Mobile, Mobile Legends and NBA2K19 while there are tons of apps open in the background.

Also Read: Samsung Galaxy A20, A10 Hit Local Stores

Speaking of PUBG, we tested it at Ultra Graphics and Extreme Frame Rate settings, and it still delivers smooth performance with little to no slowdowns. Yes, it tends to a bit warmer during extensive and long time of gaming, but there is really nothing to worry about. One piece of advice though, please don't play games or use your phone excessively while it is being charged.

The A50 also supports playback of lots of audio and video formats, including the popular FLAC and MKV, and can even play videos with UHD 4K (3840 x 2160) resolution of up to 120fps. And, with its above average audio output, and large storage, users can really take advantage of its Super AMOLED display and be their binge-watching device on the go.


CAMERA:

Samsung Galaxy A50 Review - Triple Rear Cameras
Triple Rear Cameras

The Samsung Galaxy A50 has a total of 4 cameras, 3 at the back and 1 in the front. The rear shooters are composed of a 25MP f/1.7 primary sensor, an 8MP f/2.2 123-degree ultra-wide sensor, and a 5MP f/2.2 depth sensor. Meanwhile, the selfie snapper another 25MP f/2.0 sensor.

Samsung Galaxy A50 Review - Front Camera
Front Camera

The camera interface is very intuitive, and quite friendly, especially when using with just one hand. Users can change shooting modes by swiping left or right, while switching between the front and back cameras can be done by simply swiping up or down.

Samsung Galaxy A50 Review - Camera Interface
Camera Interface

The cameras are equipped with artificial intelligence that automatically detects what is inside the frame, such as food, person, and scenery, and adjusts the level of brightness and saturation accordingly. There is also something called 'Flaw Detection' that helps the users get the right shot, or shall we say take another shot, when it detects someone blinks, there is a blur, or bad lighting. Moreover, AR Emoji, AR Stickers, Stamps, and Filters are there to express yourself in many ways and personalize every shots.

Camera Samples:

Samsung Galaxy A50 Camera Review - Indoor
Indoor
Samsung Galaxy A50 Camera Review - Indoor, Wide
Indoor, Wide
Samsung Galaxy A50 Camera Review - Outdoor
Outdoor
Samsung Galaxy A50 Camera Review - Outdoor, Wide
Outdoor, Wide
Samsung Galaxy A50 Camera Review - Fairway
Fairway
Samsung Galaxy A50 Camera Review - Fairway, Wide
Fairway, Wide
Samsung Galaxy A50 Camera Review - Sunset
Sunset
Samsung Galaxy A50 Camera Review - Sunset, Wide
Sunset, Wide
Samsung Galaxy A50 Camera Review - Food
Food
Samsung Galaxy A50 Camera Review - Close-up
Close-up
Samsung Galaxy A50 Camera Review - Selfie
Selfie

During daytime or when there are good lighting conditions, the Galaxy A50's primary camera (25MP sensor) managed to impress us by delivering crisp and vibrant images with great dynamic range, edge detection, and contrast. Lowlight performance is more than acceptable too, although, we still hope Samsung will add a dedicated 'night mode' in future updates.

When the 8MP wide-angle lens is used, it can really fit lots of things inside the frame, however, don't expect the quality to be the same with that of the 25MP sensor, the color reproduction and the details are different, and tends to be a lot noisier in darker environments. But then again, it has its own purpose and can be very useful in select situations.

As for the notch-mounted front camera, it also delivers pretty nice images. The self-portrait outputs have good details on them, especially when there is ample amount of lighting.

In terms of video recording, it can record videos with up to 2336 x1080 pixels (no 4K here), and stabilization that is highly commendable. Moreover, it supports High-Efficiency Video Coding or HEVC format, also known as H.265 and MPEG-H Part 2, which compresses the files into about half of that the usual H.264/MPEG-4 format.

An important thing to note is that the default output resolution is 12MP, and if you want it to be 25MP, all you have to do is change the aspect ratio to 3:4H from 3:4. This is true for both the front and back 25MP sensors. However, by doing so, there will be no HDR of any kind.


CONNECTIVITY:

As mentioned in the early part of this review, it supports two Nano SIM cards + a MicroSD card plugged in all the same time. This means that users don't need to choose between dual SIM capability or storage expansion as the phone can accommodate all of it.

Whether you are using SIM 1 or 2, the call quality is good, so as the mobile data connection. The same can be said when using the other wireless connectivity, namely dual-band Wi-Fi, NFC, Bluetooth v5.0, location system, and FM radio. For wired connection, there is USB Type-C version 2, and 3.5mm audio port is still present.


BATTERY:

One of the many selling points of this phone is its large battery, it has 4000mAh typical capacity. And, it supports 15W fast charging with such capable desktop charger included in the package. Based on our test, it can be fully charged in about 2 hours and 20 minutes.

Samsung Galaxy A50 Review - Battery Info
Battery Info

As our daily driver, it has an excellent uptime, and usually last for a day even under heavy usage. On PC Mark Battery Test, it also has an excellent score of 14 hours and 53 minutes, that's about 9 minutes longer than that of 4230mAh battery inside the Realme 3, and 2 hours 21 minutes longer than the ASUS ZenFone Max Pro M1's 5000mAh power core.


FINAL WORDS:

Samsung Galaxy A50 Review Philippines
Samsung Galaxy A50 Review Philippines

The Samsung Galaxy A50 indeed looks good, has enough fire power, great battery life, nice cameras, and very optimized software. Samsung has made an astounding achievement with the A50, and we can say that it is their best mid-range phone in years, not to mention it has a great specs-to-price ratio too!

Samsung Galaxy A50 Specs (Philippines):

  • Dual Nano SIM, dual standby, supports LTE connectivity
  • 6.4-inch FHD+ sAMOLED (2340 x 1080) capacitive touchscreen Infinity-U display, 19.5:9 aspect ratio, Corning Gorilla Glass 3 protection
  • Dimensions: 158.5mm x 74.7mm x 7.7mm
  • Weight: 166 grams
  • Android 9 Pie with Samsung One UI
  • 64-bit oOcta-core (4 x 2.3GHz Cortex-A73 + 4 x 1.7GHz Cortex-A53) CPU, ARM Mali-G72MP3 GPU, Samsung Exynos 7904 chipset
  • 6GB RAM
  • 128GB internal storage, expandable up to 512GB via MicroSD card, uses dedicated slot
  • 25MP f/1.7 + 5MP f/2.2 + 8MP f/2.2 triple rear cameras with LED flash, 1080p video recording at 30fps
  • 25MP f/2.0 front camera, 1080p video recording at 30fps
  • Multimedia Player, supports 4K 120fps video playback
  • FM Radio
  • 3.5mm audio jack
  • WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual band 2.4GHz+5GHz
  • Bluetooth v5.0
  • NFC
  • GPS with A-GPS, GLONASS, BDS, Galileo
  • USB 2.0 Type-C
  • Sensors: in-display fingerprint, accelerometer, light, orientation, proximity, gyroscope, sound, magnetic
  • Battery: 4000mAh Li-Po, 15W Fast Charging
  • Colors: Blue, Gradient Black, Coral White
  • Others: face unlock
  • Price: Php17,990

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