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Samsung Galaxy A70: The Good, The Bad, and The X factor
Samsung brings another well-rounded smartphone in the A-series.
Samsung is poised at garnering a good user base in the mid-range segment. The company has launched a few smartphones under its Galaxy A series in a flurry. The company was quick to recognize the importance of maintaining the balance between a good spec sheet and its pricing.
Well, to continue the trend the company launched the new Galaxy A70 smartphone for the Indian market for a price of Rs 28,990. The device is powered by a Qualcomm's Snapdragon 675 chipset backed by 6GB or 8GB of RAM and 128GB of onboard storage. But is it ready to lock horns with the already dominant Chinese smartphones? Let's break it down for you.
Yet another brilliant display
Samsung has used its signature Super AMOLED panel for the latest smartphone covering a 6.7-inch real estate up front. You wouldn't be missing the dark blacks while watching your favorite movies. The company has used its Infinity-U display which means the notch on the top is u-shaped, drawing less prominence. The bezels running along the edges are also pretty narrow making this display ideal for multimedia consumption.
Apart from the eye-melting resolution, the device is also Widewine L1 certified allowing HD playback from all the video streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, among others. A Corning Gorilla Glass protects the front panel and has Always-On functionality allowing you to check time and notification without having to wake up the device. Besides, Samsung has also added an optical in-display fingerprint sensor along with a face unlock feature for biometric authentication.
One UI does the trick
Samsung Galaxy A70 runs the company's proprietary One UI on top Android 9 Pie. The interface offers subtle layout with new fonts and a convenient one hand usage mode, Knox integration, night mode, Samsung Health, among others. Navigating through the app menu is also swift and we didn't face any issues there.
With the latest user interface, the Galaxy A70 also gets the Bixby Routines, which I have personally liked in the previously launched devices like the Galaxy S10 Plus. The feature can be set up manually or wait for the phone to learn your routines.
With this feature, you can set routines like automatically turning on the DND mode during the nights, or change lock screen shortcuts according to the apps that are most used. These features make the user experience much better and smooth.
Massive battery reservoir
The Samsung Galaxy A70 comes with a colossal 4500mAh battery, which can provide juice to the device for a long time. Our usage involved constant web browsing, social media surfing, and playing graphics-heavy games.
If you are a moderate user, you won't need to plug in a charger for at least one and a half day. In case of a hardcore user, you still might be left with some fuel by the end of the day. Well, in case you run out of juice, the fast charging has you covered.
The Samsung Galaxy A70 comes with support for Super-fast charging at 25W. This is the first time the company has used this tech on its phone, as its flagship uses the fast-charging tech at 15W. This also shows that the company doesn't want to wait for its flagships to bring such features to the table.
Full-fledged Samsung Pay support
The Galaxy A70 is the first A-series device to get the full version of the Samsung Pay. This will be a welcomed change as the feature makes it easy for users to make cashless payments. The service works almost everywhere you can swipe or tap your card. So this is an added advantage if you own a Samsung Galaxy device.
Besides, with each transaction made using Samsung Pay earns users Samsung Reward Points which can be used to redeem their choice of vouchers from the redemption catalog.
Design-wise, the Galaxy A70 is identical to its sibling - Galaxy A50. It would be hard to tell the difference between the two until you give a closer look. Although the design of the smartphone is decent, the back panel comes with what the company likes to call a "3D Glasstic" design.
The design appears to have a glass panel on the rear, however, it's actually plastic. This also means that the device looks premium, but doesn't feel like it when held. Also, the rear panel due to its glossy nature attracts a lot of fingerprint marks and smudges making the device look untidy.
Best A-series camera, not overall
Although Samsung is betting big on the cameras for its A-series smartphones, the setup on the Galaxy A70 might fall short of the competition. However, it's still the best camera placed on any A-series device.
The device features a triple rear camera setup comprising of a 32MP main sensor with an f/1.7 lens, an 8MP ultra-wide sensor with f/2.2 lens, and a 5MP depth sensor with an f/2.2 lens. Up front, the company has placed a 32MP sensor with an f/2.0 aperture.
The pictures taken in favorable conditions were good and had an ample amount of details. However, the camera didn't produce pictures that could challenge the pictures taken from other devices in the same price bracket.
Ultrasonic scanner would've been better
For biometric authentication, Samsung used an optical in-display fingerprint scanner on the Galaxy A70. Since the company already has the ultrasonic fingerprint technology, using a dated tech seems like a letdown.
We know, Samsung has only used the tech for its flagship Galaxy S10, but bringing the feature to a lower range would've given the device an extra edge over its competition. We've seen companies like OnePlus use an ultrasonic sensor for its latest flagship product, and it's not so heftily priced as the Galaxy S10.
The ultrasonic sensor uses sound waves to read the ridges of the fingers, so it should work with wet or sweaty fingers. But, that's not the case with an optical sensor.
The X factor
Despite its minor flaws, the Galaxy A70 is still a good value for money. At this price range, the company could hit the right chords with users who do not wish to shell out money on flagships.
If the company wish to go against the likes of brands that have a strong foothold on this segment, the Galaxy A70 seems like a near-perfect device. It has a great display, good performance, a decent set of cameras, and all this complemented by Samsung's best UI to date.
It might not be the best device in the segment, but it's still right there with the best. The smartphone will be pitted against phones such as the Nokia 8.1, Vivo V15 Pro, and OnePlus 6T. But if you are a Samsung loyalist, you might wanna give this one a chance.
Hit or a miss?
With the Galaxy A70, Samsung has produced yet another well-rounded smartphone that makes for a good value for money. Bringing such good specifications at an aggressive price is something we've always wished from Samsung. The company has been putting some top-of-the-line functionality on table with its latest products, and the Galaxy A70 is no different.
If you are someone who has always been a believer of Samsung, the Galaxy A70 is something you should definitely put your hands on. Overall, the device, in our opinion would perform well in this price segment and will be a safe bet if you decide to buy it.