Samsung Galaxy A8 Review: A High Performance Smartphone, Flagship feel, all at Rs. 32,000

samsung_galaxy_a8_front-back_side1Samsung proudly claims that its products are made in India, and all Samsung smartphones sold here are completely manufactured at its plant in Noida, Uttar Pradesh. The Korean company gives a tough competition to lower-priced smartphones in the Indian market.

Samsung under its flagship launched Galaxy A8 which features a fingerprint scanner and a slim 5.9mm frame, this phone looks rich but does it live up to our expectations. Let’s see.

Look and feel

Samsung has always maintained the same look for a long time, but Galaxy A8’s design is little different from its predecessors. Samsung Galaxy A8 retains that familiar Samsung look, but the metallic edges and frame give it the kind of sophistication that is different from flagship devices. It has fantastic buttons and dull metallic finish of the curved edges with a slight slope. The curve edges are little sharp which can be bothersome for users when you hold in the hand.

At the bottom of the phone, a USB port, and a 3.5mm ports are placed, while the SIM card slots and volume keys are found on the left edge of the phone. The top of a device has a microphone and power key is on the right edge.

Unlike other smartphone makers, Samsung is the only company to built a solid home button instead of a soft or capacitive one. The home button includes a fingerprint scanner which enables user to use it at ease, and a quick launch is been placed at the home key, by double tapping on it opens up that makes the users take quick shots efficiently.

In an effort to keep the device a light weight, Samsung has opted to use a plastic back panel, which reminds us the low-quality feel that had become synonymous with Samsung’s entire smartphone lineup. But the plastic back on the A8 actually feels great.

The A8 is slim, light and easy to hold, despite being phablet-sized at 5.7 inches. The speaker, camera, and flash are lined up across the back in that order, right above a Samsung logo.

Specifications and software

Samsung Galaxy A8 (Global variant) is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 615 SoC, but the Indian version uses octa-core Exynos 5430 Soc The GPU of the device is an integrated Mali T628 and the primary cores are clocked at 1.8GHz, while the secondary cores functions at 1.3GHz. The internal storage consists of 32GB along with 2GB RAM, a 16MP primary camera, and a 5MP secondary camera.

The handset is dual-SIM which has two SIM slots supporting 4G SIM cards. However, one of the SIM slots converts into a hybrid slot which means it doubles up as a microSD slot.

The device runs on Android 5.1.1, along with the company’s TouchWiz UI layered on top. TouchWiz is now smooth and functional for the most part but is still lacking in terms of control and customizability, as it is still far behind the stock Android UI used by Nexus and Motorola devices.

Samsung Galaxy A8 has proprietary services like the Galaxy Apps marketplace, S Voice, S Planner and Smart Manager. The device also includes a private mode, a virus and malware scanner, and Samsung’s Knox enterprise mobile security solution.

Camera

Samsung is known for its one best camera in the market and Galaxy A8 features a 16-megapixel rear camera and 5-megapixel front camera, similar to the S-series flagships, it uses a slimmer ISOCELL LSI3P3 camera sensor to fit into its 5.9mm frame.

The camera produces sharp images in ordinary light and in bright settings. Zooming deep into pictures also tends to reveal a lot of details. Video quality is equally good and is sufficiently stable and clean with motion and accuracy.

Performance

We didn’t face any difficulty while using the Samsung Galaxy A8. It worked swiftly and was quick and efficient at most tasks, from running just the UI to loading intensive apps and games.

According to scores AnTuTu and Quadrant, the device scored of 49,247 and 25,198 respectively, which are considerably higher than the scores of the other smartphone. Moreover, the 3D Mark and GFXBench gave scores of 7,015 and 30fps respectively, which were again higher as compared to Qualcomm-powered phones.

Our test videos have shown Galaxy A8 performed admirably and the most heavily encoded videos ran without a hitch. Surprisingly, sound quality was good enough, regardless of the size of the speaker itself. Call quality and sound through headphones were all excellent as well.

Samsung is known for its everlasting battery. In our video loop battery test, the handset ran for almost 17 hours, 22 minutes, which is incredibly high for a phone of this size and slimness.

Final Verdict

At a price tag of Rs. 32,000 it has a well-designed, well-built device that is easy to hold and use even though it is phablet. In short, the Samsung Galaxy A8 gives an amazing experience, apart from the TouchWiz UI which is at slightly sub-par. Samsung Galaxy A8 should be on your wishlist if you are looking out for a high-quality performance device with a flagship feel, without shelling out big bucks.

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