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Samsung Galaxy M40: The Good, The Bad, And The X Factor
Samsung seems to have found its zen with the Galaxy M series of smartphones. The lineup has received an overwhelming response from the Indian consumers and the company claims to have sold over 2 million units since its launch. Now, it's time for another device take the mantle from the Galaxy M30 and be the flag bearer of the series.
So, the company has now launched its Galaxy M40 smartphone at a price of Rs 19,990. The smartphone comes with an Infinity-O display that has a punch hole for the camera, which is also the first for this price segment. But is it the best smartphone in the segment? Let's break it down for you:
Yet Another Excellent Display
Samsung always scores high when it comes to displays. And, the Galaxy M40 is no exception. The smartphone sports a 6.3-inch full-HD+ Infinity-O Display, however, this time around a TFT display has been used instead of an AMOLED panel which was seen on its predecessor -the Galaxy M30.
But, that doesn't change things in a drastic manner. The display here is sharp and vivid with brilliant color reproduction and great viewing angles. The Infinity-O panel is definitely the stand out feature as it's the first for this price segment and offers over 91 percent screen-to-body ratio.
In addition, the display is also Widewine L1 certified that allows HD playback from all the video streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, among others. The screen is protected by a Corning Gorilla Glass and also has Always-On functionality letting users check time and notification without waking up the device.
Fresh Design and Color Schemes
Design-wise, the Galaxy M40 is one of the better-looking devices in this segment. The punch hole display makes for a cherry on the top. It provides more real estate for the screen and shows subtle transitions when using the front camera or using the facial unlock feature. It kinda feels like the Galaxy S10e, but with lower-end innards.
The back panel comes with a similar polycarbonate body design seen on some Galaxy A series smartphones. It looks premium and feels like glass, but is actually plastic. This is what Samsung likes to call a "3D Glasstic" design. The back panel has a triple camera setup aligned vertically along with a fingerprint reader.
The glossy nature of the panel might attract a lot of smudges, but that's the price you pay for possessing an affordable phone that offers a premium glassy look. The company has also introduced new color schemes with the Galaxy M40. The device will be shipping in Midnight Blue and Seawater Blue color options, and both colors are different from what we've seen from the company. It seems Samsung wants a piece of the racy color smartphone trend set by Chinese phone makers.
Finally A Snapdragon Chipset
All the smartphones under the Galaxy M series are impressive smartphones. But, what's holding them back are the Exynos processors. These processors aren't bad by any means, but they do lack the power a Snapdragon chip churns out.
Well, the company was quick to respond and incorporated a Qualcomm Snapdragon 675 chipset coupled with 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. These specifications make the Galaxy M40 look really good on the brochure.
We have seen the Snapdragon 675 on devices like the Xiaomi Redmi Note 7 Pro, and we know how well the chipset performs. It'll be able to handle daily tasks with ease and firing up graphics-hungry games won't be a problem. But we'll be pushing the device to its limits in the coming days and come up with a detailed performance review.
Galaxy M Series Tastes Android Pie
One of the most welcomed features for the Samsung Galaxy M series is the Android 9 Pie with One UI on the top. It's great to see the company is shipping the device with an upgraded Android operating system which is complemented by its best user interface to date.
Also, you get to use all the features of One UI on the Galaxy M40 which were only available on flagships until now. The interface brings subtle layout with new fonts and a convenient one hand usage mode to the Galaxy M lineup. You also get Knox integration, Night Mode, Samsung Health, among others.
Not An Optical Delight
On the photography, the Galaxy M40 comes equipped with the triple camera setup. The setup comprises a 32MP primary lens with f/1.7 aperture along with an 8MP ultra-wide-angle camera and a 5MP depth sensor.
In our brief time with the device, we managed to take some shots. The images taken in well-lit areas came out pretty well, however, some of the images were oversaturated and lacked detail. The colors didn't look sharp and reproduction could have been better. The portrait shots looked pretty good though, and the edge detection was also decent. The camera failed to impress in low-light conditions.
We aren't saying this is a bad a camera, it's definitely an upgrade over its precursors in the M series but isn't the best one out there. We've seen better cameras in this price segment. But we'll be testing the camera in all kinds of lighting and pass judgment before writing it off.
Time To Hang Them 3.5mm Headphones
Samsung has finally cut ties with the 3.5mm audio jack with its Galaxy M40. This is a bold move from the company, but this might not be the right device to pull off this antic as the budget-conscious users still have faith in the old school headphones.
The company does offer a pair of Type-C headphones to make up for the loss. But, be prepared to hang your favorite 3.5mm headphones if you're planning to buy the Galaxy M40.
Samsung's Galaxy M series of smartphones always carried heavy batteries. Well, not anymore! The Galaxy M40 is backed by a smaller 3500mAh battery. It does have support for a 15W fast charging which was missing from the previous models, thanks to the new Type-C port.
Samsung claims to have optimized the OneUI and battery-efficient processor to make the battery last longer, but we do feel a bigger reservoir would have made the Galaxy M40 an even better deal.
The X Factor
Value For Money
With the Galaxy M40, Samsung has produced a brilliant smartphone that comes loaded with impressive innards and fresh design. All this is complemented by an aggressive price tag, making this a really good buy.
The Galaxy M40 sports a punch hole display making it a stand out product in the segment. It might have a few flaws but none of them would be a dealbreaker. Since Samsung plans to go head-to-head with the dominant Chinese brands and re-claim its throne in the Indian market, the Galaxy M40 seems like a brilliant option.
Bringing a well-rounded smartphone like the Galaxy M40 sub-20,000 shows that Samsung means business and willing to restore consumers' faith in its mid-range products again.
Hit Or A Miss?
With these specs and design below Rs 20,000, we knew the Galaxy M40 was an instant hit. The device is definitely a great value for money and we feel it will hit the right chords with the consumers.
For people who are looking for a phone in this price segment could this one a chance, and we are sure it won't disappoint. With the new smartphone, the Galaxy M series continues to prove its mettle and gives a peek into what more to expect from Samsung in this price segment in the coming days.