Samsung Galaxy S5 Mini is the last model that Samsung released under the Mini variant of the S series of smartphones.
Now that this lineup is no longer being released by the tech giant, there is a new line of smartphones, this time, the A series.
Samsung Galaxy A3 2016 is what you will get this year rather than get a Galaxy S6 Mini. Samsung also unveiled Galaxy A5 2016 Edition, another phone that is deemed as a successor to the Mini series; however, this review will focus on this year’s Galaxy A3 model.
Release date and pricing
Samsung Galaxy A3 2016 edition is not yet available in the United States, but sales are already underway in Europe. Sitting between this year’s S series flagships, the A3 2016 model is currently priced at $300, a price that is expected to prevail when it comes to the U.S.
Design and quality of build
As mentioned earlier, Samsung first released the Galaxy A3 last year, with this year’s version being its direct successor. Just as expected, the South Korean tech giant has made some improvements to this year’s model.
The design resembles the current flagship – Samsung Galaxy S6 – thanks to the aluminum frame as well as Gorilla Glass 4-protected rear and front. This is a solid build for a phone priced in this range, but don’t expect the device to go unscratched in thecase of any rough handling.
With smooth curved glass edges, the Galaxy A3 (2016) is a little slippery, although it is quite easy to handle given its 4.7-inch housing that makes it easy even for people with small hands. The phone can be purchased in gold and pink as well as black and white.
Galaxy A3 (2016) display quality
Posing as an improved version of the A3 (2015), this year’s version brings an excellent range of contrast that ensures your eyes is fed with rich colors. You can use this phone at any given time of the day thanks to its highly adjustable brightness. The size of the Super AMOLED HD screen is 4.71 inches, giving a resolution of 1280 by 720 pixels.
Software and performance
Samsung and a host of other OEMs have been trying to trim the number of default apps that come alongside Google-based apps on Android-powered smartphones. The A3 2016 edition has received this trim on the TouchWiz UI, a move that will mean the phone’s software is very lean and much faster than the A3 2015. Samsung has installed Android 5.1.1 Lollipop in this year’s model.
Going further deeper into the A3 phone, Samsung went for an in-house quad-core Exynos 7578 CPU that manages a maximum speed of 1.5GHz. The device is powered by a RAM of 1.5GB, which is still decent for not so heavy tasks or serious multitasking activities. This should scare you, especially if you like gaming as this phone might be a little problematic as far as handling gaming is concerned.
On the storage part, Samsung added the elusive microSD card to supplement the 16GB of onboard storage the device comes with.
Many OEMs have learned that people no longer buy digital cameras; instead, they buy smartphones with top-notch snappers. Samsung has been trying to make this one of their USPs, but it seems the Galaxy A3 2016’s snapper is a disappointment.
Even though on paper it looks decent with the rear featuring a 13MP snapper while the front is coming with a 5MP lens (both having a f/1.9 aperture), the quality of photos you get in low-lighting or unsteady conditions might scare off some camera-focused buyers. Nonetheless, you will still get some of the best photos as long as the lighting conditions are great and your hands remain steady when shooting.
To quickly launch the camera, just double tap the physical home button.
The Galaxy A3 2016’s USP is undoubtedly the battery unit it comes with. Integrated with top energy-saving abilities, you can be sure of getting up to 2 days from the non-removable 2,300mAh unit the phone sports. Even though there is no room for aQuick charge or even Wireless charging, the unit can still be fully charged in about one and a half hours.