Samsung Galaxy A70
While the Galaxy A80 might have the flashy camera pop-up and better specs, the Samsung Galaxy A70 is a fine mid-range phone in the making too. At £369 it boasts features you might not expect to get for the price.
With a big, beautiful screen, a headphone jack and tons of RAM and storage, this triple camera phone could prove to be one of the better mid-tier handsets around. Here’s our hands-on first impressions from the launch event in Milan after its announcement earlier in the year.
Price and availability
The Samsung Galaxy A70 will cost £369 in the UK. This is actually a less-contested price point than the low and high-end of the market. Comparatively the Honor 10 is £399 while the Xiaomi Pocophone F1 is £329.
US and European pricing was not confirmed at the time of writing.
There are cheaper phones around £200 that indeed suffice for some, but as we found when we went hands-on with the A70 there are often good reasons to spend that little bit extra.
Hey good looking
While the A70 might not win any design awards it is more premium than the price suggests (the reflections in our pictures under lighting are more visible to the camera than the naked eye). Samsung unfortunately describes the back material as ‘glasstic’ – it’s plastic, but with all the smears of glass thanks to the gloss. Hooray!
Aside from this unfortunate fingerprint-fest the colours on offer are lovely, with black, white, blue and coral to choose from.
A massive win is the 6.7in 1080p AMOLED display. You may not be able to find a better panel on a smartphone at this price point. Samsung makes the best OLED displays in the business and for £369 the screen on the Galaxy A70 is ridiculously good.
Thrice as nice
The three cameras on the back of the A70 don’t flip around to take the selfies like on the overblown A80 but they look to be pretty great in their own right. You get a 32Mp main sensor paired with an 8Mp ultra-wide and a 5Mp depth sensor.
This means you can shoot in portrait mode, though we found in low lighting those results were pretty blurry – auto mode fared better. That ultra-wide angle lens is great to see on a mid-range phone though, and shows Samsung is willing to bring features from its high-end S10 to cheaper phones (even if the hardware and parts are not as good).
The front facing camera is a generous 32Mp and housed in a teardrop shaped notch at the top of the display. The high Mp count is in keeping with Samsung’s vision for this as a phone for younger generations who take a lot of video and selfies.
Inside the phone is either 6 or 8GB RAM paired with 128GB expandable storage. Pair that with the excellent display and you are getting a whole lot of phone that’s built to last.
Samsung’s great One UI software based on Android 9 Pie is present too and was quick and responsive in our time with the phone.
Add to that an absolutely whopping 4,500mAh battery with Samsung’s fast charging and this phone looks to be the real mid-range deal. With the specs, that battery should last for absolutely ages – well into two days, we hope.
A Snapdragon 670 powers the phone and is potentially not powerful enough for the highest of high-end gaming, which is a shame, but we will confirm in our full review. The 600 series is well known for good power efficiency though, so we could have a battery champ our hands.
You don’t get premium features like wireless charging or waterproofing, but there is an on-screen fingerprint sensor. We weren’t able to test it and it’s not the ultrasonic one from the Galaxy S10, but the inclusion is good to see – provided it works properly.
Even though the Galaxy A80 launched at the same time has better specs and flashy rotating cameras, the A70 looks like a more sensible buy. It has a great OLED screen, three cameras and a huge battery.
Samsung’s mid-range phones are numerous but the A70 is one that stands out for its value. We’ll have a full review soon.
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