Samsung unveils its Galaxy A9 (2018)





It is rather rare to see Samsung hold a full-fledged event for a range A smartphone. The Korean manufacturer's willingness to pick itself up in the mid-range segment, after the massive influx of Chinese competition, could have guided this choice. However, at 599 €, the Galaxy A9 encroaches on the premium segment of the Galaxy S9, whose price has dropped since their release.
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The big screen of 6.3 inches Galaxy A9.

4 modules for 3 different focal lengths

To justify this position, the A9 presents a characteristic still out of the ordinary: the presence of four photo modules on the back. This is one more than the Galaxy A7 launched last September. The photo is the area in which the Galaxy A9 wants to shine. Its main photo module is based on a 24 Mpx sensor, surmounted by optics opening at f / 1.7. It is surrounded by a very wide-angle module with an 8 megapixel sensor and a telephoto module with a 10 megapixel sensor. The Galaxy A9 brings together the two worlds of zoom and wide-angle. The last module is only present to support others in depth of field measurements, especially for portrait mode.
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The 4 photo modules of the Galaxy A9.

A welcome versatility, which opens up great prospects for the user. However, after a quick grip of the Galaxy A9, we can not say that we came out totally conquered. Admittedly, the conditions of our trial were not the most lenient. More than a month from the release of the smartphone, Samsung still has time to refine its image processing. For the moment, the management of the electronic noise is risky and the passage between the different modules is not perfectly fluid. It will be necessary to check all this when the Galaxy A9 will be really available. To over-multiply photo modules, manufacturers take the risk of having less time to optimize each of them.
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Photo performance not always in focus.

A balanced technical sheet

Beyond these photo modules to the result still uncertain, Samsung reassures with other controlled aspects. For starters, the Galaxy A9 is entitled to a 6.3-inch Super Amoled slab screen with Full HD + definition (2,220 x 1,080 px). The A9 is therefore part of large size smartphones.
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The wide-angle offers a field of 120 °.

The finishes of the Samsung terminal are necessarily excellent. The glass back and its color effects are rather elegant. At least, until the fingerprints take possession of the places. A defect common to many smarpthones who make the choice of glass. The back side welcomes the fingerprint reader, unlike the Galaxy A7 which embeds its reader on the edge.

In terms of animation, this is the big return of a SoC Qualcomm in the family of Galaxy A. Here, it is the Snapdragon 660 that was chosen. A 6XX series that is very often synonymous with good endurance. This could actually be the case for the Galaxy A9, which has a battery of 3,720 mAh. The Snapragon 660 comes with 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. An ability that brings a little consistency to the relatively high selling price of the smartphone. It is possible to expand this internal memory with a microSD port.
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An elegant back, as long as it is not covered with fingerprints.

For connectivity, Samsung has equipped its Galaxy A9 with Bluetooth 5.0, NFC, Wi-Fi 802.11ac and 4G LTE. The terminal will also be able to accommodate two nano SIM cards.

A strange sales strategy

Even if the Galaxy A9 finally manages to be effective in photo with its four modules, it is difficult to understand what Samsung wants to do. Indeed, at 599 €, it will face big names like the OnePlus 6T, the Honor View 10, and even the Galaxy S9 whose price has dropped since its release.
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Four modules and a lot of questions for the Galaxy A9.

Above all, the GalaxyA9 will only be sold at Orange in France. Total exclusivity, therefore, and marketing only at the end of the year, lasting only a few months. Difficult, even without having tested this smartphone, to recommend it. We can easily ask the question of software tracking on a smartphone that will be little used. On the side of Samsung, the message is that the Galaxy A9 fits the DNA of Orange innovation. Of ours, we wonder if Samsung really believes it.

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