Galaxy A53 5G Review
While Samsung's flagship Galaxy S Series phones always catch the most attention, the company's mid-range A-Series phones are typically just as impressive. However, this time around, you probably shouldn't expect the same quality in the Galaxy A53 5G.
The Galaxy A53 5G is Samsung's weapon of choice for the highly competitive mid-range smartphone market. Following on from last year's excellent Galaxy A52 5G, it needs to bring quite a bit.
So, how does it work in the real world? I've been using it for the past few weeks to see how it stacks up against competitors. Overall, does the Galaxy A53 5G budget-friendly design, nifty features, and advanced technology make it a good choice for people who may want to stray from flagship models like the Galaxy S22?
Design & Display
While the Samsung Galaxy A53 looks very similar to the 2021 version, it does not have the same feel or appeal. I will, therefore, have to cover this phone with a case that more reflects my personality and aesthetics, hiding away the beauty that Samsung tried to bring.
The design of the cameras' casings is a bit outdated, considering the fact that it's also present on a lower-end model like the Galaxy A33 5G.
I will give it to Samsung though the plastic is very sturdy and durable. The only addition to that is; The IP67 rating for water and dust resistance which is a tad below the IP68.
Samsung's decision to exclude a 3.5mm headphone jack may disappoint some customers, but it did add a micro SD card slot with the SIM card tray, so you now have the option of expanding the internal storage.
The Galaxy A53 has an AMOLED 6.5-inch display that offers plenty of vibrancy and deep blacks. The Galaxy A53's bright and colourful screen—along with its relatively thin bezels—provides users with a display experience that's equally practical and enjoyable. Compared to the much pricier Galaxy S22+, there are very few tradeoffs in the A53's display capabilities.
The resolution is ideal for a device with this screen size, at FHD+ – 2400 x 1080 pixels, 404ppi. It also offers a 120Hz refresh rate, so you can enjoy content without blurring or ghosting. However, I took note that when switching within the OS, such as dragging down the notifications shade or swiping out from an app, elements were slow to respond, creating a stutter and delaying that snappy feeling we are so used to seeing. Some serious enhancements are needed to make the overall experience more consistently smooth.
The Galaxy A53 5G has a glass display protected by Gorilla Glass 5, which helps prevent scratches. Its hole-punch camera—which does not disturb the display's quality or responsiveness—gives it a better premium look. The under-display fingerprint scanner doesn't work as reliably as the S22. It is not as quick or responsive as the S22, but I expect that for a budget device.
The Galaxy A53 5G brings an intriguing update with a new Exynos processor, the first to use Samsung's 5-nanometer architecture in the A-series. It should be more efficient and deliver its performance with lower power consumption, but that's not entirely what I saw.
Samsung claims that its latest Exynos chip, the Exynos 1280, outperforms the last generation of chips by offering a boost while supporting 5G connectivity. The Exynos 1280 plus 6GB of RAM should be enough, but some users will be able to allocate some of their phone's storage as virtual RAM – up to an additional 6GB.
This phone features 128GB of storage, and there is an option for up to 1TB via microSD cards; This makes it a solid choice for those seeking extra storage.
I do happen to like the aspect of the Galaxy A53 5G's performance when it comes to operating within apps- it's speedy and smooth. I believe that most of the issues are related to the UI that stutters where optimization seems to be required. Samsung also needs to align itself with optimizing its applications, such as the camera app, as it also suffers from that annoying lag.
The Galaxy A53 5G can handle any game or app you throw at it. You might not get the best graphics quality, but the phone prioritizes smoothness over detail.
The phone kicks in with a 5,000mAh battery with the ability to deliver 25W of fast charging. That's a generous capacity and an increase over the Galaxy A52. On slow days with a few hours of use on social media and web browsing, I could finish a day with more than 50 percent left over.
Cameras & Photo Gallery
With the enormous amount of progress made in smartphone cameras, it's no surprise that Samsung is working on catching up to the likes of Google's Pixel or Apple's iPhone. The Galaxy A53 5G is doing something good with its pictures. Whether this is from the selfie camera or the impressive arrays at the back, there's something for everyone.
Samsung's Galaxy A53 5G has two cameras on its rear you might want to get to know—and two that you might as well ignore. I'll get into the detail with reason.
The phone has a 64-megapixel sensor and optical image stabilization (OIS) on its lens, which should help keep images cleaner over long exposures. It also has a dedicated night mode that works well, which seems to be something on budget devices that usually sucks.
Samsung suggests that you might shoot using the 64-megapixel and crop down since this phone has no optical zoom. Alternatively, you may use digital zooming, which is something, but the quality drops off significantly after 2x.
The ultra-wide camera has a 12-megapixel sensor and is generally quite good, but it isn't as good as the primary camera, making this a disappointment. While taking sample pictures, it often left me with washed-out photos or overly exposed; This wasn't a consistent experience.
The depth sensor is overrated. Many flagship phones take outstanding bokeh photos without such a lens. As for the macro lens, they could have skipped it. Maybe with additional software optimization, it could be better. There's a likely better implementation that they can do, which would provide better pictures for the general consumer.
Should you buy it?
I'm not at my first run-in with Samsung's smartphones, but the Samsung Galaxy A53 5G with 6GB of RAM leaves me sour. So before you jump in and offer me solutions that I've already tried—have I mentioned that I reset the device several times? The previous generation, the Galaxy A52 5G, runs much better; There's no stuttering, there's no lag between actions, and it's smooth and pretty flawless. I believe that Samsung can get the same level of smoothness with future software updates.
While the improvements over its predecessor are negligible, the A53 is a decent mid-range phone regardless of its failing points. The display on the front is vibrant, bright and clear. The battery life is stunning, as is the overall speed and performance.
With its price of $529.99, however, the Samsung Galaxy A53 5G has a lot of competition. Other phones cost less or are the same price and can give you a better experience. I'm still hopeful that a software update will address the issues not experienced in the A52 5G.