When I saw the first leaked pictures of the Galaxy A5, my first thought was yet another lookalike Samsung device. But then I looked a little closer and things started to get a little more interesting. The more I looked the more convinced I became that the Galaxy A5 might just be Samsung's first mainstream waterproof phone.
The Galaxy A5 is a seriously mid-specced device, following on from the Galaxy Alpha, with a rumored 5-inch Super AMOLED display, Snapdragon 400 CPU and a 13 MP main camera backed up by a 5 MP front-facing shooter. The Galaxy A5 will also reportedly house 16 GB of internal storage with expansion via microSD and a 2,330 mAh battery. Now this is where things get interesting.
Looking at the images you'll see what initially bored me: yet another identikit Samsung device up front. But then if you look at the sides you'll notice a few things: for starters, the Galaxy A5 has the same metallic beveled edge found on the Galaxy Alpha, but you'll also notice the microSD and SIM card trays located on the side just below the power button. So why would Samsung put trays on the side when they are usually located on the back under the removable plastic cover?
- Read our hands-on Galaxy Alpha review.
I think the Galaxy A5 won't have a removable battery cover. Take a look at the pics of the bottom of the phone and tell me it looks like that cover is removable. Having said that though, it doesn't seem like we're looking at a back panel made of metal either. The source that leaked these images to SamMobile claimed the device was not made of metal or plastic, but a material that ''feels cold in the hand''. We already know that Samsung is working on a new mystery material and it may well be unveiled in the Galaxy A5. The only good reason I can think of for a non-removable, non-metal back cover is if the Galaxy A5 is a waterproof device.
So would it make sense for Samsung to finally deliver a waterproof phone outside the usual Active range on a mid-range device? Maybe. The device is reportedly being promoted as premium, despite its weak specs sheet and uninspiring design. It will be running the latest version of TouchWiz though, and the combination of a new build material and waterproofing may well be enough to convince the general public that the device is indeed premium.
With the specs race starting to plateau, OEMs will have to start looking at alternative ways to stand out from the crowd, and waterproofing and better battery life are the main frontiers. Samsung already has some of the best cameras in the business, so it makes sense to start pushing the other angles. Of course, I may be totally wrong and the A5 may just have a non-removable cover for no reason. The question then is: why Samsung, why?
What do you think? Do you think the Galaxy A5 might be waterproof?