Today Samsung announced that updated versions of their Galaxy A3, A5, and A7 smartphones are about to be released. The original Galaxy A7 launched at the very beginning of this year, and both it and the other Galaxy A smartphones represented Samsung's attempt at bringing quality smartphone construction and design to lower price points than what you would pay for a flagship phone like the Galaxy S6. With it being nearly a year since the original announcement of the Galaxy A7, it makes sense that Samsung would want to refresh the lineup. Below you can find the specs for all three of Samsung's new smartphones.

  Samsung Galaxy A3 Samsung Galaxy A5 Samsung Galaxy A7
SoC 1.5GHz Quad Core 1.6GHz Octa Core
RAM 1.5GB 2GB 3GB
NAND 16GB NAND + microSD
Display 4.7" 1280x720 AMOLED 5.2" 1920x1080 AMOLED 5.5" 1920x1080 AMOLED
Camera 13MP Rear-facing, F/1.9, OIS on A5 and A7
5MP Front-facing, F/1.9
Dimensions / Mass 134.5 x 65.2 x 7.3mm
132g
144.8 x 71.0 x 7.3mm 155g 151.5 x 74.1 x 7.3mm 172g
Battery 2300 mAh 2900 mAh 3300 mAh
OS Android 5.1 Lollipop
Network Category 4 LTE Category 6 LTE
Other Connectivity 2.4GHz 802.11b/g/n + BT 4.1, USB2.0, NFC, GPS/GNSS 2.4 / 5GHz 802.11a/b/g/n + BT 4.1, USB2.0, NFC, GPS/GNSS, MST for Samsung Pay
Fingerprint scanner No Yes Yes

As you can see, all three devices have a degree of similarity. The Galaxy A5 and A7 in particular seem to be the most closely related, with many of the differences simply coming down to the difference in size between the two, and the drop to 2GB of RAM on the A5. The Galaxy A3 is clearly the more low end device, with a 4.7" 1280x720 display, no 5GHz WiFi support, and additional reductions to RAM, the SoC, and the cellular connectivity. Because the Galaxy A3 omits the fingerprint scanner present on the A5 and A7 it's also unable to use Samsung Pay.

Of course, some details like the specific SoCs in use are unknown, although one can speculate based on the limited number of offerings on the market that fit the descriptions. Whether or not the Galaxy A3's display uses a PenTile subpixel arrangement will also be an important detail to consider once it's revealed.

As for the design of the phones, they take inspiration from the industrial design of the previous Galaxy A devices but adopt some of the changes made with Samsung's Galaxy S6 and Galaxy Note5, such as the use of glass on both the front and back of the devices. All of the phones are quite thin, and both the design and materials used mean that these definitely won't be targeting the sub-$100 part of the smartphone market. Samsung is also introducing a pink gold color which wasn't available with the last generation models.

While I don't think any of these phones are going to have extremely low prices, it's clear that they'll be competing at price brackets lower than the one occupied by Samsung's flagship phones. The launch prices for the Galaxy A3, A5, and A7 are currently unknown. According to Samsung, the phones will be launching in China later this month, with an expansion to global markets coming in 2016. We'll have to wait and see how much the phones go on sale for in the Chinese market before we're able to guess how much they'll cost elsewhere, and interested buyers will have to wait and see when their availability expands to their country.

Source: Samsung

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  • Mr Perfect - Wednesday, December 2, 2015 - link

    I'm curious about a few things, if you guys find out, let us know.

    1. What SoCs are they?
    2. Are they getting Marshmallow?
    3. What networks do they work on?
    4. Why have I never heard of this A line before? :P
    Reply
  • Andrei Frumusanu - Wednesday, December 2, 2015 - link

    Likely Exynos 7580 or Snapdragon 616/617 depending on regions with different network bands. Reply
  • zebrax2 - Wednesday, December 2, 2015 - link

    Personally what gives me hope with this release is that Samsung actually increased the thickness of the phone to pack in a larger battery. I only hope this is a sign of things to come. Reply
  • Hulk - Wednesday, December 2, 2015 - link

    How much of a performance upgrade would the A3 be over my SIII? I'm fine with the 720p display and I like the smaller form factor. But I could definitely use a little more compute. Reply
  • lilmoe - Wednesday, December 2, 2015 - link

    My sister in law got the first gen A5 several months back. I can say the SoC wasn't as powerful as the Exynos 4 (neither CPU nor GPU) in the GS3, but the software was much more toned down, and runs basics tasks just as good.

    With this in mind, I'd guess the current gen A3 is getting a Snapdragon 610 (4xA53 @ 1.5GHz) which is faster than the last gen A5 with more RAM than the international GS3 at 1.5GB. And with the more optimized software, I'd say yes, it WILL be faster and more efficient than the GS3. All with a larger battery, more efficient processor, better camera, more premium build and probably a more efficient display.

    Also, Samsung are supporting the A series just as good as their flagships, so don't worry about software upgrades, they're coming for sure. Go for it if it's either this or the GS3. However, if you don't want to pay the "Samsung tax" (especially in this segment), I'd suggest you look for more, and probably better options from other manufacturers. The market is packed with great stuff at this price bracket. The OnePlus X is great if you can get your hands on one.
    Reply
  • Hulk - Wednesday, December 2, 2015 - link

    Thanks for the great info. I'm Sprint so kind of limited... Reply
  • OreoCookie - Wednesday, December 2, 2015 - link

    Hmmm, these color choices, I've seen them before, but I can't quite put my finger on it … ;-) Reply
  • remo_mein05 - Thursday, December 3, 2015 - link

    I can't figure out relevance of putting an octa-core CPU in a phone. They should go for optimization rather than multiplication...http://theyouthjob.com/?ref=103109 Reply
  • ToTTenTranz - Thursday, December 3, 2015 - link

    If the A5 and A7 are carrying the long-awaited Snapdragon 620, then they should be the midrangers to look out for.

    They have everything to make HTC's One A9 completely irrelevant.
    Reply
  • jb958 - Thursday, December 3, 2015 - link

    It looks like the new A5 is the sweet spot for me (coz I'm guessing the A7 would be much more expensive) I like that they decided to upgrade the cpu to an octa core one, and the screen to a bigger one in terms of both physical dimensions and resolution. I hope its price stays as that of the price of the original A5. I'm deciding between the Zenfone Selfie and this http://versus.com/en/samsung-galaxy-a5-2016-vs-asu... . But I'm really dying for the fingerprint sensor on the A5. Reply

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