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Samsung Galaxy A80 First Impressions

Samsung has just announced the Galaxy A80, the world's first pop-up rotating triple camera smartphone!
Samsung Galaxy A80 First Impressions
Samsung Galaxy A80

The star of the show at Samsung's "A Galaxy Event" has arrived. The Samsung Galaxy A80 is a standout from the Korean Giant in a while. 

What makes this phone interesting is the pop-up rotating triple camera setup that acts as both the front-facing and rear-facing cameras. It is made up of the 48MP f/2.0 main camera, 8MP f/2.2 ultra wide-angle lens, and the 3D depth sensor w/ AF and LED flash. 

Under the hood is a Snapdragon 730 octa-core processor, an Adreno 618 GPU, 8GB RAM, 128GB internal storage, 3,700mAh battery with Super Fast Charging.

These are our initial observations. 

Build Quality/Design

Back of the A80
Back of the A80

The A80's build and design is a major departure from the rest of the A-series and the S-series of phones. The design language reminds us of the Samsung Galaxy Fold that we saw from Samsung's own videos.

Unique pop-up rotating camera design!

It has this feeling of solidness and heft to it that immediately hits you as you hold it. You will also immediately notice how heavy it is. But these minor gripes do not really matter because the more I look at the A80, the more I am reminded of jewelry. It is pretty. It is shiny. And it has weight to it.

I think the heavier and sturdier build was done to strengthen the overall integrity of the phone and avoid what happened to the OPPO Find X.

The back panels are made up of two panels with only the Samsung branding and the triple cameras. The smaller second panel moves up so the triple camera set up has space to rotate and face the user.
On top is the microphone
On top is the microphone
There is no 3.5mm headphone jack
There is no 3.5mm headphone jack

In front, the display is huge and immersive 6.7-inch display with 2.5D glass and with slim bezels from all sides. The bottom bezel being slightly thicker than the rest. There is no mention of whether or not it is Gorilla Glass protected.

We can expect its screen-to-body ratio to be higher than 90 percent since it is a full-screen phone with no notch like the Find X.

The panel is a New Infinity Super AMOLED display which means it has no notch nor does it have a punch hole. 

On top, there's a single microphone hole. At the bottom are the SIM card tray, USB-C, speaker grill, microphone, and antenna lines.

On the left side are the volume buttons and the power button while the right side has the power button and more antenna lines.

Like the A70, there is no sign of the Bixby button nor was there a 3.5mm headphone jack.

Initial findings

Full-screen display with a cinematic aspect ratio
Full-screen display with a cinematic aspect ratio

1. The Galaxy A80's is a stunningly built phone with premium materials of metal and glass that make it solid, hefty and heavy. It reminds us of jewelry every time we look at it.

The 6.7-inch display is big and it has a crisp 2400 x 1080 resolution from a Super AMOLED New Infinity display gives us a near bezel-less experience without the notch or a punch hole. It is also one of the few phones that has this unique aspect ratio that makes the experience so cinematic.

2. Under the hood, it is powered by the 8nm Snapdragon 730 octa-core processor that is paired with an Adreno 618 GPU however we were not able to run benchmarks as we were not allowed to during the limited time we had with the phone.

The phone comes in an 8GB RAM and 128GB internal storage variant with a 3,700mAh battery with Super Fast Charging via USB Type-C. The pop-up and rotating mechanism may have taken more space which resulted in a smaller battery.

Stay tuned for our full review once we get our hands on a review unit.

3. The Galaxy A80 runs on Android 9 Pie with One UI on top. We've reviewed One UI written on this article here. To summarize, we like the new skin and it is a major improvement over the previous Samsung Experience UI with more focus on one-handed use, easier navigation, and lightweight software. 

The rotating triple camera
The rotating triple camera

4. At the back are the rear triple camera set-up made of a 48MP f/2.0 standard wide camera, an 8MP f/2.2 123-degrees ultra-wide angle camera and a 5MP f/2.2 depth sensor camera with autofocus and LED flash.

From our initial shots, the A80 can take stunning daylight and indoor shots with the rear and front-facing cameras. We have yet to try the A80 in low light situations as we had very limited time with the device. We will update this section once we have a review unit and more time with it.

One unique feature that we love that resulted from the rotating cameras is the Live Focus Video mode even when the cameras are front-facing.

Related: Samsung Galaxy A80: First Camera Samples

5. The phone features an In-Display fingerprint sensor that from our initial use already feels and runs faster than the A50s. Samsung also didn't skip on the likes accelerometers, orientation, proximity, gyroscope, and magnetic sensors.

Samsung Galaxy A80 Specs

Display: 6.7-inch 2.5D curved Super AMOLED screen w/ FHD+ 2400 x 1080 resolution at 393 ppi
CPU: 2.2GHz 64-bit Snapdragon 730 octa-core processor
GPU: Adreno 618
ROM: 128GB
Back Camera: 48MP f/2.0 + 8MP f/2.2 ultra wide-angle lens + 3D depth sensor w/ AF and LED flash
Battery: 3,700mAh w/ 25W Super Fast Charging
OS: Android 9.0 Pie w/ One UI
Connectivity: WiFi 802.11ac (2.4GHz/5GHz), 4G LTE, Bluetooth 5, FM Radio, GPS, GLONASS, dual SIM
Sensors: Accelerometer, orientation, proximity, gyroscope, sound, magnetic
Others: In-Display fingerprint sensor, face unlock, USB-C, Dolby Atmos, Colors: angel gold, phantom black
Dimensions: 165.2 x 76.5 x 9.3 mm
Weight: 219 g
Price: PHP 34,990 (PHP 29,990 new SRP)

As of the moment

Live Focus Video in selfie mode
Live Focus Video in selfie mode

The Samsung Galaxy A80 is one of the more unique and innovative phones Samsung has ever announced. (aside from the Galaxy Fold) 

The pop-up rotating triple camera has multiple benefits like reducing the amount of cameras on the phone, increasing the image quality of selfies and front-facing video, and creating a phone with only the screen at the front.

But we have yet to really put it through its paces to see how it performs in the real world.

We will still reserve judgement until we get more time with a review unit. Until then, stay tuned for our full review.

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