Home Mobiles 5G Australian Review: Samsung A71 4G is a solid affordable mid range phone

Australian Review: Samsung A71 4G is a solid affordable mid range phone

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Samsung’s A series phones are very popular in the budget to mid range market. The A71 4G is a great example of why. If you’ve got $699 to spend and need a good phone it’s a no risk solid affordable “Toyota Corolla” type of choice.

The 2019 range of A series phones sold well worldwide so instead of reinventing the wheel the A71 has a lot in common with it’s 2019 predecessor the A70, except there are 2 versions 4G and 5G.

In fact it’s so similar in shape to last year’s Samsung A70 that it fits in the same case, the only difference is the A71’s much bigger, double sized camera bump shape and size.

Several of my family members bought an A70 last year so comparing between them in terms of speed, screen, cameras etc the A71 is a bit better in some ways and the exact same in others.

Specifications & Setup

Setup was extremely easy copying over all my apps and settings from another Samsung phone via Wi-Fi, you can also use the Samsung Smart Switch app on both phones to copy from your other old Android or iPhone.

Thankfully Samsung gives you the option of whether to install their web browser and most of their other bundled apps. They still insist on mandatory installation of Samsung Calendar which I find a nuisance as I prefer Google Calendar.

The in-screen finger print scanner is not as fast as some other brands but it was reliable during my testing period. Note it helps the finger scanner work better if you don’t use a screen protector.

These are the key differences between the A71 and the previous A70. As you can see the camera internal sensors are the main difference along with a better processor which is faster, the switch from 11nm to 8nm should improve battery life.

A70 A71
Display 6.7” FHD+ sAMOLED

Infinity-U Display

6.7″ FHD+ sAMOLED Plus

Infinity-O Display

Rear camera 32 MP (Main)

8 MP (Ultra Wide)

5 MP (Depth)

64 MP (Main)

12 MP (Ultra Wide) 

5 MP (Depth)

5 MP (Macro)

Front camera 32 MP 32 MP
Performance Snapdragon 675 (11nm)

(Octa Core Processor)

Snapdragon 730 (8nm)

(Octa Core Processor)

Battery 4,500 mAh

(25W Super Fast Charging)

4,500 mAh

(25W Super Fast Charging)

Security On-screen Fingerprint Scanner On-screen Fingerprint Scanner

Cameras, Screen and General Usage

Photography is a key part of smartphone use and the A71 has plenty of camera lenses on it’s back camera bump that protrudes a couple of mm from the main body of the phone.

As is often the case in the mid-range you won’t get a proper 2x or more zoom lens. Yes you can use digital zoom on the A71 but the resulting photo will just be a crop of the main camera sensor, not actually zooming in closer.

The most important back lenses of the A71 are the main normal view and Ultrawide as can be seen here in a series of architecture photos. The main camera takes good shots during the day but the ultrawide is not as high quality or sharp in the fine details.

Samsung smartphone cameras and screens have always been good at taking photos of vibrant coloured subjects and displaying them on a top notch AMOLED screen and the A71 follows this rule.

If you like to take selfies with the background blurred out Samsung’s “Live Focus” camera setting is the place to go. Similarly food photos will be quite good. The new Macro camera is a fail because you have to be an fixed exact distance away to take a sharp photo or the results are blurry.

The 1080 x 2400 Super AMOLED Plus screen is bright and sharp. The back is polycarbonate made to look like glass. Volume and power buttons are on the top right and 3.5mm jack, USB-C port and a single speaker are at the bottom.

Should you buy the Samsung A71?

Things you don’t get in the A series which you do get in the more expensive S series Samsung phones include wireless charging, waterproof rating, zoom camera and “proper” glass backing.

On the plus side, with the A series A71 you get a thin 7mm phone, a huge, great quality display, small hole punch in the screen, subtly curved edges which feel smooth but not so curved as to cause accidental touches and I think plastic polycarbonate looks just as good as glass.

Battery life is all day thanks to the 4500mah battery capacity and efficient processor. The 25W fast charger will have you back to halfway in about half an hour and totally full between 75-90 minutes depending on whether the phone is on while charging.

If you want an Android phone it’s hard to go wrong choosing a Samsung.

They’re not at the cutting edge of some areas like charging speed but their screens are great, phones are reliable and besides Google and Nokia they have a solid recent track record of issuing security and software upgrades. As an example, the A71 was one of the first new Samsung phones to get Android 10.

The Samsung A71 4G can be purchased outright from Samsung Australia or major retailers like Bing Lee and JB Hi-Fi for $699. The 5G version is $200 more at $899.

If that’s above your budget and you were considering the A51 instead, don’t. I tried the A51 for a day and the A70/A71 are much more responsive, smooth and speedy to use compared to A51 model. The A70/A71 also have a vastly better in screen fingerprint reader than the A51. Australian stock of the Samsung A70 is still being sold by Mobileciti for $549.

11 COMMENTS

  1. I have owned the a71 for a number of mounths now and, i mean it works but i haven’t been enjoying it much.

    The under screen finger print is garbage, I usaly ending up putting in my pin any way.

    The rest of the issues are softwere. First power button activates bixby insted of powering off. The camera app has a roge shutter button sitting futher up on the screen (both work but you only need one button to take a photo). I get annoying adds for (Oh earn money while charging your phone!) And other crap. That the notification system is terrible. Some times not even showing notifications or zooming them in.

    Oh last hardwere one, The battery life is not as good as my last moto z2play dispite this phone been thicker. I can run it flat in a day.

  2. I’d like to caution anyone who is contemplating buying a Samsung Galaxy A71, can all but confirm that every A71 sold in Australia has a green tint issue when in dark mode around 5% brightness and viewing a greyish app like the Google Chrome homepage, this issue is possibly in all Super AMOLED displays made for the A71. I had this issue with my A71 and I sent it in for repair, they replicated the issue and agreed to replace the screen, when I got the phone back, the replacement display had the same green discolouration in a different area of the display. I’ve been involved with comment threads where others have been through the screen replacement process up to four times until they gave up and just put up with the issue. I’m pursuing a refund.

    • It appears to be a common issue with certain panels apparently,
      according to some one plus 8 pro owners , I believe they also have a similar issue that is apparently still not solved , if we look back other phone brands also had this issue too , I don’t know it’s the exact same issue , but I think Huawei on one of its models also had a similar green tint issue ?
      I wonder if the curved edge screen is common thing with all these weird display tint issues ?

      • Thanks for the info Michael, do you have a phone with this issue too? I’m on the hunt to find proof of an A71 that DOESN’T have a green tint issue.

      • The OP 8 Pro users a Samsung OLED. It must be a production issue on their Pleads as they try to go brighter

  3. i am a happy owner of the A71. Had the A70 for a while but wasnt 100% satisfied with a few things such as the fingerprint reader which they rectified in the A71. Its a great phone for the price. Looks and performs like a flagship.Would buy the A72 next year in a heartbeat.The only thing I miss is the haptic feedback which I have overcome with Gboard and the ‘Button Light” app. Happy as…

  4. I would love to buy one provided it has the jas the snap dragon processor. except US & China no other country gets the snap dragon version. That is y i am totally upset with samsung.

  5. One of the problems when on a call or video conferencing is that the screen turns of after about 40 seconds there is no setting anywhere that will change that behaviour ( other participants think that I left the video call for instance)
    Samsung confirmed this as well by the way , they did put this down to a software glitch.

  6. Have Samsung upped their price in the last 24 hours? Their site and JB Hi Fi are showing the 5G at $899 🙁

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