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Samsung’s Galaxy A5 vs the S7 and the S8

Samsung Galaxy A5

The Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8+ have finally been unveiled, but is the upgrade to the South Korean manufacturer’s latest smartphone really necessary for everyone?

We’re not even a quarter-way through the year and Samsung has already shown us three phone options: the surprisingly impressive Galaxy A5 and now the Galaxy S8 and S8+.

The Samsung Galaxy S series are high-end smartphones with equally high price tags, hitting the plus $1,000 CAD range when not purchased on a contract in Canada. The mid-range Samsung Galaxy A5, released back in January 2017, is almost half that cost at $525.

Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)

Samsung Galaxy S8

Samsung Galaxy S7

Display

5.2-inch Super AMOLED display, 1080 x 1920 pixels

5.8-inch Super AMOLED display, 18.5:9 aspect ratio

5.1-inch Quad HD Super AMOLED

Processor

Exynos 7880

Snapdragon 835 (Exynos 8895 in Europe and other regions)

Exynos 8890

RAM

3GB

4GB of RAM

4GB

Storage

32GB (expandable)

64GB (expandable up to 256GB)

32GB + microSD

Dimensions (in.)

146.1 x 71.4 x 7.9 mm

148.9 x 68.1 x 8.0mm

142.4 x 69.6 x 7.9 mm

Weight

157g

152g

152g

Rear Facing Camera

16-megapixel (f/1.9, LED flash, AF)

12-megapixel (f/1.7, OIS)

12-megapixel f/1.7

Front Facing Camera

16-megapixel (f/1.9)

8-megapixel (f/1.7)

5MP front-facing camera f/1.7

OS

Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow

Android 8.0 Oreo

Android 6.0 Marshmallow

Battery

3000mAh (non-removable)

3,000 mAh

Non-removable Li-Ion 3,000mAh

Network Connectivity

GSM / HSPA / LTE

GSM/HSPA/LTE

LTE: B1/B2/B4/B5/B7/B8, HSPA: B1/B2/B4/B5/B8, GSM: 850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz

Sensors

Accelerometer, Proximity, Geomagnetic, RGB Light, Hall, Fingerprint scanner, Barometer

Accelerometer, Barometer, Fingerprint Sensor, Gyro Sensor, Geomagnetic Sensor, Hall Sensor, Heart Rate Sensor, Proximity Sensor, RGB Light Sensor, Iris Sensor, Pressure Sensor

Fingerprint (front-mounted), accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass, barometer, heart rate, SpO2

SIM Type

Nano SIM

Nano SIM

Nano SIM

Launch Date

March 17, 2017

March 29, 2017

March 11, 2016

Misc

Colours: Black Sky, Gold Sand, Blue Mist, Peach Cloud | IP68 dust/water resistant, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth v 4.2, ANT+, USB Type-C, NFC (UICC, eSE)

Colours: Midnight Black, Orchid Gray, Arctic Silver, Coral Blue and Maple Gold| Bixby, IP68 certified water-resistant, 3.5mm headphone jack, USB Type-C.

Samsung Pay (Visa, MasterCard certified), IP68 certified - dust proof and water resistant over 1.5 meter and 30 minutes

Display

Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)

5.2-inch Super AMOLED display, 1080 x 1920 pixels

Samsung Galaxy S8

5.8-inch Super AMOLED display, 18.5:9 aspect ratio

Samsung Galaxy S7

5.1-inch Quad HD Super AMOLED

Processor

Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)

Exynos 7880

Samsung Galaxy S8

Snapdragon 835 (Exynos 8895 in Europe and other regions)

Samsung Galaxy S7

Exynos 8890

RAM

Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)

3GB

Samsung Galaxy S8

4GB of RAM

Samsung Galaxy S7

4GB

Storage

Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)

32GB (expandable)

Samsung Galaxy S8

64GB (expandable up to 256GB)

Samsung Galaxy S7

32GB + microSD

Dimensions (in.)

Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)

146.1 x 71.4 x 7.9 mm

Samsung Galaxy S8

148.9 x 68.1 x 8.0mm

Samsung Galaxy S7

142.4 x 69.6 x 7.9 mm

Weight

Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)

157g

Samsung Galaxy S8

152g

Samsung Galaxy S7

152g

Rear Facing Camera

Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)

16-megapixel (f/1.9, LED flash, AF)

Samsung Galaxy S8

12-megapixel (f/1.7, OIS)

Samsung Galaxy S7

12-megapixel f/1.7

Front Facing Camera

Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)

16-megapixel (f/1.9)

Samsung Galaxy S8

8-megapixel (f/1.7)

Samsung Galaxy S7

5MP front-facing camera f/1.7

OS

Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)

Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow

Samsung Galaxy S8

Android 8.0 Oreo

Samsung Galaxy S7

Android 6.0 Marshmallow

Battery

Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)

3000mAh (non-removable)

Samsung Galaxy S8

3,000 mAh

Samsung Galaxy S7

Non-removable Li-Ion 3,000mAh

Network Connectivity

Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)

GSM / HSPA / LTE

Samsung Galaxy S8

GSM/HSPA/LTE

Samsung Galaxy S7

LTE: B1/B2/B4/B5/B7/B8, HSPA: B1/B2/B4/B5/B8, GSM: 850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz

Sensors

Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)

Accelerometer, Proximity, Geomagnetic, RGB Light, Hall, Fingerprint scanner, Barometer

Samsung Galaxy S8

Accelerometer, Barometer, Fingerprint Sensor, Gyro Sensor, Geomagnetic Sensor, Hall Sensor, Heart Rate Sensor, Proximity Sensor, RGB Light Sensor, Iris Sensor, Pressure Sensor

Samsung Galaxy S7

Fingerprint (front-mounted), accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass, barometer, heart rate, SpO2

SIM Type

Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)

Nano SIM

Samsung Galaxy S8

Nano SIM

Samsung Galaxy S7

Nano SIM

Launch Date

Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)

March 17, 2017

Samsung Galaxy S8

March 29, 2017

Samsung Galaxy S7

March 11, 2016

Misc

Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)

Colours: Black Sky, Gold Sand, Blue Mist, Peach Cloud | IP68 dust/water resistant, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth v 4.2, ANT+, USB Type-C, NFC (UICC, eSE)

Samsung Galaxy S8

Colours: Midnight Black, Orchid Gray, Arctic Silver, Coral Blue and Maple Gold| Bixby, IP68 certified water-resistant, 3.5mm headphone jack, USB Type-C.

Samsung Galaxy S7

Samsung Pay (Visa, MasterCard certified), IP68 certified - dust proof and water resistant over 1.5 meter and 30 minutes

Many consumers hear “Galaxy S” and immediately jump for Samsung’s latest flagship offering. Samsung’s S series is synonymous with high-quality Android devices and is often compared directly with Apple’s iPhone. However, just like the iPhone, each year the price of Samsung’s S Series Galaxy devices increases. The same $500 spent years ago on a Galaxy S4 will not even get you half way to purchasing an S8.

If you can’t shake yourself away from the grip of the Galaxy S series, or Samsung in general — MobileSyrup still contends that the $599 OnePlus 3T is one of the top and most affordable high-end android devices out there — Samsung’s roughly a year old, but still very current, the S7 is also a viable option.

So lets take a look at the S8, S8+ A5, S7, and examine each device’s strengths and weaknesses.

Galaxy S8 vs the S7

After looking at the above technical specifications comparison chart (you can find it above), it might appear to some that the A5’s 16-megapixel camera is better than shooter feature in both the S7 and S8. However, the 12-megapixel sensor featured in the S8 has a wider aperture, coming in at f/1.7, allowing the phone to take better pictures in low-light than the A5’s f/1.9 aperture lens.

It’s also likely that Samsung saves some of the magic that powers the company’s highly-regarded image processor for its key flagship devices. The S8’s 8-megapixel front-facing camera is also the first ‘selfie’ camera with auto focus, allowing for better front-facing camera quality than the A5’s 16-megapixel camera.

The S7 has the same dual-pixel 12-megapixel rear-facing shooter as the S8. However, like the A5, the S8’s front-facing selfie camera beats out the S7 if we’re focusing purely on megapixels. The 8-megapixel front facing camera is superior to the 5-megapixel front-facing camera on the S7. For the simple reason of it having the same f/1.7 aperture, additional megapixels and auto focus functionality.

Samsung Galaxy S7

The A5 and the S7 also may have an edge when it comes to battery life when compared to the S8. The S8, A5 and S7 all feature 3,000mAh batteries, though with the smaller display featured in the S7 and A5, these devices will most likely last longer than the S8 (you could also say the same thing about the S7 Edge to a lesser extent). Don’t be alarmed though, the S8 does have a new 10nm chipset designed to improve improve the smartphone’s battery performance.

According to various publications, the S7’s battery beats out the A5’s by at least six hours of usage, with a more power efficient processor and slightly smaller screen being the likely reasons.

The S8’s display measures in at 5.8-inches, while the S8+ measures 6.2-inches. Samsung isn’t giving their consumers very many options with their S series phones this year. 5.8-inches might be too large for the small hands of many consumers and the 5.2-inch A5 or 5.1-inch S7 could be a better fit for many people who prefer smaller phones.

Samsung Galaxy A5

The A5 is an impressive device and despite its mid-range categorization, it has no problems multi-tasking and performs burdensome functions without any sort of crashing or overheating.

No one will disagree Samsung’s S8 and S8+ are better phones than both the S7 and A5 based purely on specs, however, you may not need everything the S8 offers. In that case, value-minded buyers could do a lot worse than look to the Samsung S7 for $100 on a two-year contract or less (with most carriers). For those consumers that don’t want to be tied down, the A5’s $525 price tag looks more favourable than the $780 cost of the S7.

If you’re not looking to spend too much money and don’t want or need a phone with Bixby or an iris scanner, than the S7 or the A5 could possibly be the Galaxy smartphone for you.

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