Samsung Galaxy A72 Review – A Mid Ranger’s Premium Upgrade

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Samsung Galaxy A series has always been the go-to phones for those who are looking for a mid-range device. The A series has been improving over the years and I have experience that first hand. I have seen the evolution for most of the A series, from the lower tier up to the most “premium” A series. The improvements made are better and bolder than the previous versions.

But this has to be the biggest and best upgrade yet. I say this because of the improvements they’ve made to the internals, functions and most of all, the overall design. The Samsung Galaxy A52 and A72 was launched just a few weeks ago. From what I see during the launch, Samsung have made a brilliant upgrade to both of the series in terms of design and functionality.

I received the test unit for the new Samsung Galaxy A72 right after the launch and I have been using it since. I simply love the design. Now this is my full review of the newly upgraded A series.

Design

The biggest and most obvious change you can see on the new Galaxy A72 is the design. It is more modern and sleeker than before. It shouts premium as soon as you unboxed it. The vast improvement from the previous A71 is obvious. And I’m talking about the materials used for the shell.

Samsung Galaxy A72 Review

This time around, the Galaxy A72 comes with a flat design around the front and back. The shell at the back is made of matte plastic and reinforced by metal around the sides. The metal housing made the Galaxy A72 look even better. The front glass is a 6.7″ Super AMOLED 90Hz display that not only look good, but feels good too. And right at the top of the display, there’s the punch hole selfie camera looking right back at you.

Samsung Galaxy A72 Review

I personally like the flat design. It is no longer a shiny plastic surface at the back which was a fingerprint magnet. The flat matte surface made it look premium at first glance. I would proudly show off the Galaxy A72 to the crowd. That goes to show how good looking it is.

The camera bump looks really good this time. The bump itself is made to be part of the back design, with the same material and colour as the phone itself. It has a contoured edges which made it look as though it is part of the phone. The previous A71’s camera bump look as though it does not belong there. It doesn’t have the seamless look as this Galaxy A72. So the best of all design look for this new A72 is the camera bump. It simply doesn’t look odd.

Samsung Galaxy A72 Review

On the right side of the phone, there’s the usual placed volume rocker and the power button right below it. There’s nothing on the left side of the phone. Right at the top, you can see the SIM/Macro SD card tray and one tiny mic hole. At the bottom, there’s the USB type-C port, another tiny mic hole, a bottom firing speaker and as a bonus, a 3.5mm audio/headphone jack. I’m glad this Galaxy A72 comes with an audio jack. I very much prefer to have a good old audio jack than to have a Bluetooth connection for sounds especially for gaming. Unless you’re using Samsung’s very own Galaxy Buds Pro.

It is also good to know that the A72 comes with Dolby Atmos surround stereo speakers. The dual speaker sounds really loud and clear so you can binge on your favourite movie or listen to your favourite songs in full stereo experience.

Another key improvement that has been made is that, now you can go swimming…with your phone. The new Samsung Galaxy A72 is now IP67 water and dust proof certified. You can submerge the phone underwater up to 1 meter deep for 30 minutes. It’s nothing to shout about but at least you won’t have to worry about a little accidental splash. But I won’t actually recommend you to go swimming with your phone. So don’t purposely do that.

Performance and User Experience

The Samsung Galaxy A72 comes with Android 11 out of the box with OneUI 3.1. Samsung has made a lot of improvements with their version of Android OS and the OneUI 3.1 is their best version of the OS yet. It has many hidden features that you can unravel along the way.

Switching themes or changing wallpapers is easy. You can even opt to have a special daily wallpaper directly from Samsung to appear on your lock screen. This settings can be found under Wallpaper Services from the settings page.

The A72 has an under display fingerprint sensor. It is located towards the bottom of the front display, almost right at the edge. It is quite responsive and quite fast to unlock. But it is slightly slower than the current flagship like the Galaxy S21. It is good, but can be better. Reason is that I need to place my finger on the sensor a little bit longer than on the S21. A little bit longer means close to 3 seconds for each scan. I need to only tap my finger on the Galaxy S21 for a scan. Not tap and hold, just tap.

Samsung Galaxy A72 Review

Apart from that, the Galaxy A72 is Samsung Pay enabled. You can make payments using your phone via NFC at any outlets. Most of the restaurants, shops are now able to accept “wave” payments anyway. So this will come in handy for some. I do use this feature most of the time. In fact, I use it all the time.

As for the battery endurance, the Galaxy A72 comes with a large 5000mAh Lithium Iron battery that can last for close to 3 days. The first time I had it charged to full, I had to wait until the third day before I can plug it into the charger again. But I had to admit that I didn’t really fully utilize the A72’s full potential that time. I only use it for normal daily tasks like messaging, calls, some browsing on websites and looking at my Twitter feeds. Oh and I use it to snap few photos too. But that’s about it. And it lasted up to 3 days of use. Not bad at all.

But after my second full charge, I immediately put it to hard work by running some benchmarking to test the performance and also installed my go-to high graphic demand game, PUBG Mobile. For the benchmark results, I am a little disappointed that it didn’t pass the 300k mark on Antutu. It managed to score a total of 251879, which is just a few thousand mark higher than last year’s Galaxy A71 that scored 236316. Well, at least it’s higher. But I do expect it to be much better than that.

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This year’s Galaxy A72 uses the Snapdragon 720G SoC at 2×2.3 GHz Kryo 465 Gold & 6×1.8 GHz Kryo 465 Silver, supported by Adreno 618 GPU. The chipset setup is very much similar to the A71 which uses Snapdragon 730. You’re probably thinking that it has a higher number but slower performance? Well, the A72 has a “G” with the number which I think it stands for “gaming”. So I guess it is made for gaming in mind. Maybe.

On Geekbench benchmarking tool, the A72 scored 542 on a single core test and hit a 1653 score on multi core test. So in comparison, the A72 pips its little brother A71 (scored 495) but falls below the next device, the Xiaomi Redmi K20 Pro (652) on the single core test. As for the multi core test, the A72 again run passed the A71 that scored 1601 but was overtaken by Xiaomi Poco F1, scoring a 1735 points.

For PUBG Gaming, I can set the A72 to run the highest graphic settings at 60fps UltraHD. That is the best settings to use while playing PUBG Mobile. My whole experience of using the A72 for gaming was awesome. Graphic renders smoothly on its large screen, and having a large screen is a bonus here. The large battery also helps with longer game time. That’s another key advantage for those who love mobile gaming. After a full charge, I can continuously play for close to 3 hours without having to plug-in the charger. The phone does heat up a little bit after a long gaming session but I guess that is pretty normal. It’s just warm, not burning hot.

So when it comes to performance, you can be sure that you’re in good hands. Actually, it will be in your hands. Whatever it is, you will grow the extra confidence to push the phone’s abilities to perform how you want it to. So far as I’m using it, it can do whatever I throw at it. I purposely left all my opened windows as it is without swiping it off from the multi-tasking window. On Android, that will use up tons of memory from the RAM and slows down older Android phones. But it’s not the case with the A72. It does become a little sluggish but it’s not that obvious. It still manage to run all the apps without hanging halfway or crashing.

After all that heavy lifting, working it as a daily driver for basic use is more than great. Those simple use is a breeze. You can do your social media sharing, a little video editing or some graphics editing as well. Everything can be done quickly and with ease. Your photos and videos will look good too.

Now speaking of photos…

Camera

The new Samsung Galaxy A72 comes with 4 camera setups. If you asked me whether it is similar to last year’s A71 setup, I would say yes, and no. It is similar to A71, but not exactly the same. But it definitely looks better.

Samsung Galaxy A72 Review

specs:

  • Camera:
    64 MP, f/1.8, 26mm (wide), 1/1.7X”, 0.8µm, PDAF, OIS
    8 MP, f/2.4, (telephoto), 1.0µm, PDAF, OIS, 3x optical zoom
    12 MP, f/2.2, 123˚ (ultrawide), 1.12µm
    5 MP, f/2.4, (macro)
  • Selfie Camera: 32 MP, f/2.2, 26mm (wide), 1/2.8″, 0.8µm
Samsung Galaxy A72 Review - A Mid Ranger's Premium Upgrade

The 8MP telephoto camera now has a 3x optical zoom function with OIS as opposed to digital zoom in the A71. This ensures that you can capture greater detail from afar. The main 64MP shooter is similar to last year’s tech specification and so is for the macro camera. The ultrawide angle camera is also the same. Now what’s the difference then? The telephoto camera of course. They don’t have this in the A71. And the post-processing camera software does a much better job in creating a more dynamic high quality photos.

Is it really better? I will let the photos do the talking from here on.

Testing the zoom function…

When it comes to camera and photography, Samsung seldom disappoints. Only those entry level phones may not be able to get spot-on photos as the flagship ones. But A series are getting closer to flagship’s quality. I am talking about this A72. The camera is getting close to my S21’s photo quality. If you know how to take good photos or knows basic photography, you may be able to shoot some great shots with the Galaxy A72.

You can get lots of hits and less on the misses this time. With the A72, you have raised your own bar in photography.

Conclusion

I don’t have much else to say about the new Samsung Galaxy A72. I especially love the overall design. I like it looking flat at the back, making it look and feel premium but without the premium price tag. The large AMOLED display looks great with vibrant colours and deep blacks. The Dolby Atmos powered stereo speakers works great to immerse you in great sound experience.

Samsung Galaxy A72 Review - A Mid Ranger's Premium Upgrade

Performance is good. And I can play games for hours on the Galaxy A72, thanks to its large battery capacity. I can safely say that this is my favourite A series so far.

Will I recommend this A72 to any of my friends? Yes. If they are looking for a good mid-range phone or if they have good budget, I will point them to this Galaxy A72. They won’t be disappointed with the overall performance. Even I can’t stop using it and I have it in my hands most of the time.

So if you’re thinking of getting yourself a brand new Samsung Galaxy A72, you can head over to their official website to make the purchase. Retail price for the Galaxy A72 is RM1,899.00

Samsung Galaxy A72 Specifications

  • SoC: Qualcomm SM7125 Snapdragon 720G (8 nm), Octa-core (2×2.3 GHz Kryo 465 Gold & 6×1.8 GHz Kryo 465 Silver)
  • GPU: Adreno 618
  • OS: Android 11, One UI 3.1
  • Memory: 128GB 6GB RAM, 128GB 8GB RAM, 256GB 8GB RAM
  • Display:
    Super AMOLED, 90Hz, 800 nits
    6.7 inches, 107.8 cm2 (~84.4% screen-to-body ratio)
    1080 x 2400 pixels, 20:9 ratio (~394 ppi density)
  • Build: Glass front, plastic back, metal frame
  • Battery: Li-Ion 5000 mAh, non-removable, 25W fast charging
  • Camera:
    64 MP, f/1.8, 26mm (wide), 1/1.7X”, 0.8µm, PDAF, OIS
    8 MP, f/2.4, (telephoto), 1.0µm, PDAF, OIS, 3x optical zoom
    12 MP, f/2.2, 123˚ (ultrawide), 1.12µm
    5 MP, f/2.4, (macro)
  • Selfie Camera: 32 MP, f/2.2, 26mm (wide), 1/2.8″, 0.8µm
  • Sensors: Fingerprint (under display, optical), accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass
  • Colours: Awesome Black, Awesome White, Awesome Violet, Awesome Blue

Samsung Galaxy A72

RM1,899.00
9.1

Design

9.5/10

Performance

9.0/10

Price

8.8/10

Camera

9.2/10

Functions

9.0/10

Pros

  • Great design
  • Large battery
  • Water and dust proof
  • Affordable
  • Good camera

Cons

  • Performance can be better
  • Heat up a little on heavy use

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