I was quite happy to receive the new Galaxy A80 for review because I was actually looking forward to trying out the all new rotation camera function by Samsung which also a head turner. So I had the A80 with me for two whole weeks and all I can say is, I’m amazed.
The new Samsung Galaxy A80 is the kind of smartphone that you want to have. It has a full view edge-to-edge large 6.7″ display without any annoying notch. This is because the main rear camera is also the selfie camera. First of it’s kind by Samsung, the whole of the top end will glide up as the camera rotates to face the user. This gives you the same quality of photos for both normal and selfie shots. So the A80, is mainly focused on the camera function and that is the best use of this big beast.
Design and Specifications
As for as the design is concern, it is huge. The large 6.7″ display is fun to use but I feel like it’s a little heavy due to its all metal body. This phone is made for endless entertainment and gaming as well. At this size, it is not that comfortable to use with one hand so you need to hold with both hands for typing and such.
The most obvious thing you can see is the camera module. The rotating camera mechanism works smoothly and it gives that futuristic sound when the top elevates. I was intrigued by this. So I made it go up and down many times and each time it elevates, it made me go “oooooh”. The child in me was amazed.
Here are the main specifications of the Galaxy A80:
Qualcomm SDM730 Snapdragon 730 (8nm)
Octa-core (2×2.2 GHz Kryo 470 Gold & 6×1.8 GHz Kryo 470 Silver)
- GPU: Adreno 618
- OS: Android 9.0 Pie
- Storage and Memory: 128GB + 8GB of RAM
Super AMOLED 6.7 inches, (~85.8% screen-to-body ratio), 1080 x 2400 pixels, 20:9 ratio (~393 ppi density)
- Camera: Motorized pop-up rotating triple camera module
48 MP, f/2.0, 26mm (wide), 1/2″, 0.8µm, PDAF
8 MP, f/2.2, 12mm (ultrawide), 1.12µm
TOF 3D camera, f/1.2, 30mm
- Battery: Non-removable Li-Po 3700 mAh battery with fast charging 25W
The overall design of the Galaxy A80 is nice. Other than the elevated top area that rotates the camera, the buttons areas are placed at slightly different area than the other Galaxy A series phones.
The volume rockers are on the left side of the phone while the single power button is on the right. There is only the tiny microphone hole at the top where the elevated camera is located while at the bottom, we have the USB type-C port, speaker grille and the SIM/MicroSD slot. The A80 doesn’t come with a standard audio jack. You have to use the earphone that comes in the box which uses the USB type-C port instead.
Also, the Galaxy A80 comes with the fingerprint sensor under the main display, similar to the Galaxy S10 Plus. The responce is a little bit slow which sometimes can be annoying. You really have to place your finger or thumb at the correct area to get it right.
As I said earlier, the design is nice but it’s a little tad heavy in my opinion. The size is big as well. Those with small hands may have problems with the grip or handling in one hand. But it’s definitely a head turner.
Performance and Usage
Now, the Galaxy A80 is powered by the new mid-high range Snapdragon 730 chipset coupled with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. That is more than enough space and power to deal with any heavy duty tasks. As usual, I put the performance test based on two apps – PUBG Mobile for gaming and Antutu 3D for overall benchmarking. And boy I was in for a treat.
PUBG Mobile runs extremely smooth (but can be better) without any problems. It also runs cool even during heavy gaming sessions. The full display made it sweeter that it feels like I was using the TV as a display. It handles heavy graphics well and it was set to the highest graphic settings for PUBG. Gameplay was nothing less than fun. The only thing that got in the way was the earphone port, which need to use the USB type-C port that is located right in the middle. So holding the phone while gaming was a little bit annoying.
As for the Antutu 3D benchmark, the Galaxy A80 scored 205359. That is a rather good score to have although there are many others that scored higher. To me, anything that goes beyond 200k is considered good enough for that smooth graphic rendering. And the A80 doesn’t heat up, which is a plus point.
Another thing to point out is the battery usage. At 3700mAh, the A80 can last for about 10 hours on normal use plus a little gaming before I have to plug in the charger. And charging up to 100% takes a little over an hour from 15%, which is okay.
So in conclusion, I love the Galaxy A80’s overall performance. The battery can last a good full day use and it can last longer if you don’t play much games. The huge AMOLED display is awesome and there is no notch to intrude your vision. So…thumbs up.
There is no doubt that the Galaxy A80 is made with photography in mind. The triple rotating camera setup is a great niche for the A series whereby this will be the phone to have if you love taking photographs and selfies. The quality of normal shots and the selfies are the same because it uses the same camera (duh). You can have that beautiful bokeh shots while taking portraits or selfies. And I since that it also comes with an ultra wide angle lens setup, you can have that welfie group shots without any problems.
To recap, the camera setup is a motorized pop-up rotating triple camera module with 48 MP, f/2.0, 26mm (wide) as the main shooter, an 8 MP, f/2.2, 12mm (ultrawide) for that wide angle shots and TOF 3D camera, f/1.2, 30mm depth sensor.
Now it’s time to look at some photos.
Most of the photos that I’ve taken are good. Sometimes I have little problem getting a nice focused shots while using the ultra wide angle camera. Nearer subjects tends to lose focus that I really have to keep the phone as steady as I can, especially in lower light areas or indoors. Outdoor shots are great and the wide angle camera is made for that. Landscape photos are good, colours are spot on and auto HDR works well.
I can say the same thing about selfies as well. I love the “Live Focus” function that captures a subject with the bokeh effect, making it look like it was taken with a DSLR camera. Many smartphones has this function already but the Galaxy A80 does it quite well.
Overall camera quality and performance are well above par. Most of the photos taken with the normal main shooter camera are really good. That is my go-to camera when taking any impromptu photos and I’m fully satisfied with the results.
All I can say is that the Galaxy A80 is a fun phone to have. Even after two weeks, I was still easily amazed by the motorized elevating pop-up camera because it looks cool. It pops up and the camera rotates. What’s not cool about that? It feels so high tech.
I was also intrigued by the large AMOLED display that made it fun for gaming geek like me, although I only play PUBG Mobile. But that large display made me won several chicken dinners within two weeks.
So if you’re looking for a fancy smartphone that looks and feels high tech, you will want the Galaxy A80. It you love taking selfies, you definitely want the A80. If you’re thinking of getting an affordable mid-high range smartphone, you guessed it, you want the Galaxy A80.
The new Samsung Galaxy A80 is available now and is priced at RM2,499.00 from the official Samsung website.