Samsung launched two new Galaxy series namely the A and E in the later part of previous year. The A series, consisting of Galaxy A5 and A8 had a metal build which differentiated the devices from the other midrange Samsung offering. It's now almost a year since launch and the Korean company has given the A7 a new iteration in the form of theA8.
Unlike the previous generation Samsung has given the Galaxy A8 with some decent specs. Especially the camera is top notch (at least on paper). Hence we decided to pit it up against the flagship S6 and see how good it fares. Starting of the comparison we know pretty well that the S6 will win this hands down, but our main aim is to find out the areas where this budget device can match up with the King! So are you geared up for the match? Let's begin then,
Build & Design:
The Samsung Galaxy A8 is the slimmest phone from the Korean company till date, tipping the scale at just 5.9mm. Though there are much slimmer device in the market from companies like Gionee, OPPO or even Vivo, we feel that 5.5-6mm is an ideal width. Going narrower than that not only makes it tough to have a good grip but also impacts on the internal specifications (smaller batter, smaller camera module and lower power processor). There is an aluminium rim running down the side and the back has a soft touch plastic which feels rather good on hand. It feel much like the back cover of the white Redmi 2 and we are glad that Samsung has finally started paying attention to the build quality of their devices.
Their attention towards build quality started with the flagship Galaxy S6 though. After a lot of complain from fans and reviewer alike the company had finally decided to strip their faux leather back and come up with a new revolutionary design. The Samsung Galaxy S6 features metal rim on the side with Gorilla Glass 4 on the back which makes the device look rather premium. It not as slimmer as the S6 though, measuring exactly 1mm more at 6.9 mm.
These two devices are aimed at two different customer categories. The Samsung A8 with a 5.5 inch Full HD (1920x1080) Super AMOLED display is for those who are looking for a phablet with a slim footprint. Galaxy S6 on the other hand comes with a 5.1inch Quad HD (2560x1440) display and it's needless to say that the external dimensions of the device are smaller too. Both the display produce punchy colours with good viewing angles (as expected from an AMOLED panel). But just in case you want a higher resolution display then S6 will be your obvious choice,
Under the Hood:
The internals of both the devices are quite different. While in the S6 Samsung has gone with their own octacore Exynos 7420 SoC (2.1 GHz quadcore A53 + 1.5 GHz quadcore A53), the A8 gets a Qualcomm treatment. It has a mid-range Qualcomm SD615 SoC (4 Cortex A53 cores at 1.5 GHz and 4 other at 1 GHz each). The GPU on both devices are Mali T760 MP8 and Adreno 405 respectively. There is also a difference between the RAM on the devices with S6 receiving a 3GB unit while the A8 gets a 2GB one.
There's no doubt that the Exynos 7420 is way powerful than the SD615, but do remember you need to pay about Rs 5,000-Rs 8,000 more over the A8 to get it.
Despite claims that the Samsung A8 will carry the S6 lineage in the camera department, it actually hasn't. It has packed in the same 16MP f1.9 camera module on the back no doubt, but the pixel size of the camera sensor is different. It has been reduced to 1.0 micro metre in the A8 - there won't be a marked difference though.
The camera also comes with Optical Image stabilisation in both devices.
The battery on the Galaxy A8 is larger at 3050 mah in contrary to the non-removable 2550 mah on the S6. Despite the low mah number, the battery on the Galaxy S6 is no slouch.
Both devices run on Android Lollipop with Samsung's own Touch Wiz OS on top.
The Samsung A8 is only available in China as of now at a price of 3.199 Yuan (Rs 32,000) for the 16GB variant and 3,499 (Rs 35,00) Yuan for the 64GB one. On the other hand the Galaxy S6 sells at Rs 40,500-Rs 45,000 in various e-commerce website in India.
Samsung Galaxy A8 despite losing out to the S6 is able to match up with the flagship in many a respects. The build quality, camera and display of this device is top notch. At a price of under Rs 30,000 we sincerely feel that this device can give the midrangers from other companies a run for their money.