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Samsung Galaxy A30 Review – A Reliable Companion For Everyone

The new Samsung Galaxy A30 turns out to be a cute and reliable daily companion without sacrificing performance.

I received the new Samsung Galaxy A30 recently together with its bigger brother, the A50. But this is the review for the A30 so be sure to check out this site again for the A50 review that is coming out very soon.

First thing I notice about the Galaxy A30 is that the notch is rather cute. It has the U shaped notch that is not so intrusive while looking at the screen. I dislike large notched phones like when it first started with all the notch trend. And a certain fruit brand company still uses large intrusive notch in its smartphones. I don’t like that.

Design and Specifications

The Galaxy A30 has a very similar look to the newer Galaxy M20, but a little bigger in size. Though they both share identical hardware specifications, the A30 comes with an AMOLED display, unlike the M20 that only comes with an IPS display. When its AMOLED, you can expect a more vivid colours and darker black.

Samsung Galaxy A30 Review

While we’re in the subject of display, the screen size is a 6.4 inches, 1080 x 2340 pixels at 19.5:9 ratio and protected by Gorilla Glass 3. But thanks to the ~84.9% screen-to-body ratio, the A30 doesn’t feel big in my hands.

The volume rocker sits at the right size of the phone while the SIM slot is on the left. This is pretty much the standard for the mid-ranged Galaxy devices. At the bottom is where the headphone jack, USB type-C and the speaker is located. The design is very much identical to the recently reviewed Galaxy M20 and the upcoming review Galaxy A50.

On the front, we can see the U shaped notch that houses the 16MP, f/2.0 selfie camera. While at the back, the dual camera setup is located at the top left on the back panel with the LED flash below it. The fingerprint sensor sits in the middle where it is easy to reach with my forefinger. The sensor can unlock the phone in a split second. It is a must nowadays because most of the other phones with the similar sensor is able to unlock instantaniously.

Samsung Galaxy A30 Review

Now, this Samsung Galaxy A30 is powered by Samsung’s own Exynos 7904 Octa-core (2×1.8 GHz Cortex-A73 & 6×1.6 GHz Cortex-A53) SoC while the graphic is produced by Mali-G71 MP2. These hardware specification is exactly the same as the Galaxy M20 so we should see a similar overall performance between the two.

As for the memory, the A30 comes with 64GB + 4GB RAM or 32GB + 3GB RAM variations and supports up to 512GB of external MicroSD in its own dedicated slot. I have made a point in my previous review that it is better to choose the higher memory capacity nowadays for better compatibility and future proof. On the software side, the A30 comes with Android Pie 9.0 out-of-the-box with a few updates coming in as soon as you’re connected to the internet on the first use.

Samsung Galaxy A30 Review
Side by side comparison between Galaxy M20 (left) and Galaxy A30 (right)

Performance and Usage

As soon as I got the phone, one of the first install will be PUBG Mobile. This game is my benchmark for any smartphones for that matter and to see whether it can support a smooth gameplay for long hours of game time.

When the game runs right after installation, there will be a prompt that mentions which graphic class it can support. Just like the M20, the A30 goes in the “medium graphics” category. I don’t mind this because it is still playable. Medium graphic settings means it can run at 30fps without any problem while still having good details in the graphics like shadows and anti-aliasing.

True enough, the A30 managed to run smoothly on PUBG with no lag or stutter. And to those who are looking for a cheaper mid-range smartphone, you guys can consider this Galaxy A30. On a scale from 1 to 10 for gaming on the A30, I’d give it a 7/10.

Apart from gaming, I also did a test on Antutu 3D benchmark. The result is a little bit of a mixed bag. While it performs quite well in PUBG, it doesn’t perform that well in Antutu. I was actually quite surprise to see the test result below 100k mark. The exact same hardware on the M20 performed better with over 100k score. So I’m a little perplexed with this.

The Galaxy A30 comes with a 4,000mAh battery as opposed to 5,000mAh on the M20. But don’t let the number put you off. The A30 can still last me the whole day on a single charge and still have just enough juice the next morning in case I forgot to plug in the charger the night before. The juice is able to hold up well while gaming too. So that’s a plus point.


This is also a mixed bag for me. In good light, the camera able to shoot well but when the light is low, that’s when it underperforms. The thing is, most of the recently launched mid-range smartphones are able to perform as good or at least close to a flagship device when it comes to camera performance. But somehow this Samsung Galaxy A30 has some hits and misses.

I’ll let the photos do the talking.

The best shot I got with the Galaxy A30
A decent outdoor shot
Samsung Galaxy A30 Review
Indoor shot with fair lighting.
Samsung Galaxy A30 Review
Indoor wall with nice clear colour.
Samsung Galaxy A30 Review
Indoor shot with people. This Korean pianist is good. Always a joy to watch him.
Samsung Galaxy A30 Review
Food photos are always good…somehow.
Samsung Galaxy A30 Review
Another food shot.

Now we shall check out the comparison between normal wide angle and ultra wide angle on the Galaxy A30. Here is where we will see the hits and misses.

As you can see from the comparison above, the normal wide angle has a little bit of out-of-focus experience into getting a sharp or balanced result during low light. When I turn on the ultra wide angle camera, it became worse. Not only was I unable to get decent focus, I couldn’t get a well balanced colour as well. I was a little bit disappointed with this.

On the other hand, indoor shots that has some good lighting turns out good instead. As you can see from the two photos above, the details and white balance are good enough to make me happy. On normal wide angle is good, on ultra wide is slightly better.

Surprisingly the A30 performs quite well while being indoors with fair lighting too. Unlike the ones taken outdoors on low light, the indoor shots are fair to use. It’s not great, but it’s not that bad either. I can still use some of the photos taken indoors for the grams.


Samsung Galaxy A30 Review

After two weeks of using the Galaxy A30, I find that it is a reliable companion to have. The battery is able to last me the whole day, which is good. It also has an ample 64GB of storage memory which is future proof alongside its 4GB of RAM. The AMOLED screen is gorgeous, which is already a standard for a Samsung smartphones.

And then there’s the gaming part. I would recommend this A30 for those who seeks a cheap medium range phone for gaming simply because it renders well enough that it doesn’t overheat and the AMOLED screen is beautiful for that purpose.

As for photography, it is still a good phone to use for it. Although it has some hits and misses, it mostly hit the sweet spot 90% of the time. And that is good but I know it can be better.

I love the design of this Galaxy A30. It is at the right size for single handed operation and it looks good overall. The U shaped notch is non-intrusive and that’s a big plus point for me.

The new Samsung Galaxy A30 is priced at RM799 and is now available at Samsung online store.

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