Samsung A52 review: Awesome in almost every way

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Being a consumer technology reviewer, changing my smartphones is a almost weekly occurrence for me. The most important thing I look for when reviewing a mid-range smartphone is how much it makes me miss my flagship daily driver. As the Samsung A52 launched and I received my review unit, I switched over to it from my Samsung Note 20 Ultra. To my massive surprise, I didn’t find myself running back to the Note 20 Ultra as soon as the review was done.

Samsung A52

Display

As soon as you switch on the phone, Samsung’s prowess with displays is visible to you. The Samsung A52 comes with a Super AMOLED 6.5” Full HD+ (2400×1080, 405ppi) display with a 90Hz refresh-rate and peak brightness at 800-nits. The display is protected by Gorilla Glass 5.

The display is really nice. Great to consume content on. The 90Hz definitely helps but a 120Hz would’ve been ideal. For more people considering the Samsung A52, they’ll be coming from phones with a 60Hz panel, so 90Hz is still an upgrade.

Binging social media or video content is great. Colours are vibrant (a bit too Samsung-y for my taste but that can be adjusted in the settings) and text is crisp.

Body and Build

Now for people who love their phones being glass all around, I’m telling you now it self you’re going to be disappointed. That being said, I love the plastic back on the phone. Mine was the ‘Amazing Blue’ and I loved it. Such a refreshing change from the overly delicate backs on every other smartphone out there right now. No fingerprint, a few smudges but nothing to cry over.

The Samsung A52 weighs 189g, so it isn’t exactly heavy in the hand or in your pocket. The phone is about 8.4mm thick which isn’t slim but isn’t hefty and difficult to hold too. Most importantly, the phone is IP67 dust and water resistant (up to 1m for 30 mins), so you can be a little careless with it in the rain or in our case here in the UAE, in a sandstorm.

Processing, Power and Daily Use

Now the Samsung A52 will be making it’s way in the UAE in two models. The A52 4G will come within the Qualcomm Snapdragon 720 8nm processor and the A52 5G will come with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 750 8nm processor. I’ve been using the 4G version as my work phone for about 2 weeks now.

Now this processing power isn’t exactly flagship level but mixed with a smooth One UI 3.1, I didn’t hit any snags along the way. Multiple emails, loads of social media accounts and at least a few dozen video calls later, I was yet to see the phone really lag. It definitely wasn’t blazing through tasks like its flagship competitors but I can confidently say it wasn’t so much slower that I missed my flagships.

Now with the amount of notifications I get in a day, these alone can drain my battery out and I’ve had scenarios where due to smaller battery-sizes I’ve needed to minimize my notifications heavily. This definitely wasn’t the case with the A52’s 4500mAh battery. I got almost 2-days out of the phone one more occasions. Now I definitively did not put my pedal to the metal when using this device but I’m sure even a heavy user would definitely course through his/her day without any issues.

Camera

Now this mid-range Samsung A52 comes with a 64MP quad camera setup. On the back of the phone you’ve got a 64MP (f/1.8) wide angle camera, a 12MP (f/2.2) ultra-wide angle camera, a 5MP (f/2.4) and a 5MP (f/2.4) depth sensor.

On the front, you’ve got a 32MP (f/2.2) wide angle camera. Both cameras can shoot 4K at 30 FPS and 1080p up to 60 FPS.

Below are a some samples shot from the Samsung A52 and it’s 64MP quad-camera setup.

While the Samsung A52 has a decent camera which can do the job required in most well-lit scenarios, I just don’t see the point of the macro and depth sensors. Why don’t brands just keep one or two sensors and spend more money on those? In this case too, the 5MP macro sensor was so difficult to use and even if I used a tripod, the image just wasn’t worth the effort.

But as I mentioned, the 64MP wide and 12MP ultra-wide do a decent job in well-lit conditions. For most your photography and videography needs, you’ll need these two lenses, so you’re atleast safe if you’re looking at getting them A52 to snap a lot of images and videos with.

Pricing and Availabilty

As mentioned above, the Samsung A52 is available in two versions in the UAE. A 4G version priced at Dh1299 and a 5G version prices at Dh1699. Both are available in ‘Awesome Black’, ‘Awesome White’ and ‘Awesome Blue’.

Should you buy the Samsung A52 in the UAE?

In an ever-improving category of smartphones, the Samsung A52 shines bright over it’s competition. There definitely are other phones on the market which might offer a higher resolution camera, or higher refresh-display but thanks to a great display, a comfortable-to-hold body, great battery-life and most importantly regular software updates the Samsung A52 still wins for me.

I can’t recommend it enough to anyone who needs a great smartphone at an affordable price (specially if you know how to hunt down a Samsung at a cheaper price than the official website).

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