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The always on screen worked well, as always, and had very little impact on battery life. Chances are it will improve life if you use your phone as a watch to tell you the time because it removes on reason to switch the phone on. The full range of notifications are shown, too, unlike the S7 on first launch (it was later updated with fuller notifications), but the choice of clock and calendar styles is very limited: just two for the clock (there are fourteen for the S7), one for calendar (two for the S7). One of the clock faces can show up to four time zones.

Not really that much in it between Galaxy S7 photo (above) and A5 photo (below), but in general the former was faster and had an almost indefinable edge in viewability

The USB Type-C connection supports OTG – On the Go – connections, so you can use things like external DACs and mouses and keyboards with the phone. I just used the Belkin USB-C to USB-A Adaptor ($29.95). In fact, as I write this paragraph I’m listening to high resolution (192kHz, 24 bit) music on the phone being decoded by an external Digital to Analogue Converter.

I set the camera to send its photos to the microSD card I’d put inside the phone and took quite a few photos that way, but eventually switched it back. It was simply taking too long to save the photos – a second or so – leading to me missing some shots. I’m going to have to experiment with faster microSD memory.


Now that the Samsung Galaxy S7 is in the process of being replaced by the S8, those who always wanted an S7 need not worry. The Samsung Galaxy A5 is, I believe, something like ninety per cent of an S7, at much less than ninety per cent of its price.

Review: Samsung Galaxy A5 smartphone (2017 model)
Price (RRP): $649 Manufacturer: Samsung
Like a much more expensive Samsung phone, all the parts just kind of work together, water resistant, USB Type-C
Gamers after fastest processor may not be satisfied
Value for money
Ease of Use
4.5Overall Score
Reader Rating 0 Votes