One year on and the Samsung Galaxy A50 still remains a popular choice among those who are looking to pick up a mid-range smartphone. This particular handset was released alongside the Galaxy A30, where the Galaxy A30 did not manage to see a release in Germany, unlike the A50. At the end of last year, the successor to the Galaxy A50 was announced: where it is known as the Galaxy A51. Does this mean that it is still worth picking up the Samsung Galaxy A50 in 2020?
Samsung has launched several smartphones in recent years that have been well received by users and have seen their price drop significantly over time. In our previous two articles, we had already taken a closer look at the Galaxy S7 and the Galaxy A10, making an analysis of whether these two smartphones are still able to duke it out with the rest of the market in this day and age. In this article, we turn our attention to Samsung's mid-range smartphone, the Galaxy A50.
Jump right into it:
- Galaxy A50: A true mid-range handset
- Android: Will the Gallaxy A10 still receive updates?
- How much does the Samsung Galaxy A50 cost today?
- Alternatives to the Samsung Galaxy A50: Other smartphones that perform better
- Conclusion: Is it still worth buying a Galaxy A50?
Just like the Galaxy A10, the A50 belongs to Samsung's A-range, which encompasses both entry-level and mid-range smartphones. While the A10 is firmly entrenched in the entry-level segment, the A50 arrives in at least one tier higher where price and features are concerned. In our Samsung Galaxy A50 review, we already praised the long battery life afforded by the built-in 4,000 mAh battery, which easily allows the handset to last for two days with a medium-to-heavy usage pattern.
Just for comparison: the Galaxy A10 arrives with a 3.400 mAh battery. This is quite reasonable, although it still loses out to its big brother. In addition, Samsung threw in a 15-watt quick charger with the A50, which enables the Galaxy A50 get back up and running in less than an hour. Buyers of the Galaxy A50 will have to do without wireless charging though, as that is a feature that is currently found only in Samsung's flagship models such as the Samsung Galaxy S20, S20 Plus or S20 Ultra.
Besides boasting a chic and solid design, the 6.4-inch AMOLED display on the Galaxy A50 also impressed us during our review. It offers the user a Full HD+ resolution and a brightness level which allows the display to be read even under bright sunlight. However, it is not a bed of roses as we were less satisfied with the integrated fingerprint sensor and face recognition capability. Both unlocking options had their pitfalls and didn't always work quickly and reliably.
However, this model offers you a triple camera setup consisting of a 25 MP wide-angle (f/2.2), a 5 MP telephoto lens, and an 8 MP ultra-wide-angle (f/2.4). The solitary selfie camera is integrated into the display as a notch. You could say that the number of cameras in this package delivers a fair amount of flexibility when it comes to capturing images.
In purely numerical terms, the A50 is behind its successor, the Galaxy A51, which was released in 2020. For less than €300 ($340), it offers one additional camera at the back. However, the A51 dropped the telephoto lens for a macro camera and a bokeh sensor, which I do find to be less useful in real life than on paper.
Repairing the Galaxy A50 is not going to be an easy task. For instance, if you want to change the battery of your Samsung Galaxy A50, it will be quite a bit of a hassle: Samsung's integrated battery idea is not going to be easy to remove.
At market launch, the Galaxy A50 was running on Android 9 Pie right out of the box. Over time, Samsung's own user interface One UI (version 1.1) made it onto the device. Following the Android update schedule, Android 10 should also be made available on the Galaxy A50 since April/May of this year - and with that, One UI 2.0. For the time being at least, Samsung's mid-range device still remains up-to-date in this respect.
Since June 10th, the Android 11 beta is out now and will be activated for different smartphones. Whether the Galaxy A50 will also get the new version update is not yet known.
At the launch of the Galaxy A50, it came with a €349 ($396) sticker price tag. Logically, it is now a whole lot more affordable: online retailers such as Amazon, for example, offer the smartphone for less than €300 ($340). Basically, the price ranges between €300 ($340) and €400 ($453), depending on where you look although it makes perfect sense to avoid prices that are higher than its original recommended retail price.
Refurbished Samsung Galaxy A50: these are some things to keep an eye on
If you want to buy a refurbished smartphone instead of new handset, here are a few things that you should consider. The biggest difference between the two types of phones is this: refurbished handsets have been used before. There is a myriad of reasons for returning these devices. For instance, the software might not have been up to par, or the smartphone may have been returned simply because the owner purchased the wrong model. Most importantly, refurbished devices have been used, which would make them second-hand goods in a way albeit at a higher tier level.
- Also read: Refurbished smartphones buying guide
As the name suggests, refurbished smartphones are, first of all, defect-free. This includes software bugs as well as design improvements - you will not find funny malware installed on it. What is most important is to purchase these devices from certified dealers. Through this method, you can be sure that there will be no errors that accompany this device.
One advantage of refurbished devices compared to new ones would be the lower price. This is logical, because all of these devices have been used prior. In some cases, manufacturers such as Apple themselves will actually overhaul the smartphone. However, Amazon offers refurbished devices on their "Amazon Renewed Warranty" program.
Forget about the comparison that I made in the first section between the Galaxy A10 and the Galaxy A50. Yes, while both devices belong to the A-series, there is a huge difference between the two. The Galaxy A10 remains as a beginner's device, whereas the A50 is a mid-range phone - which is duly reflected in the price point. While you have to fork out around €150 ($170) for the Galaxy A10, the Samsung Galaxy A50 retails for around €300 ($340).
If we want to place both the features and performance of the device to sword, then we will have to look at devices that fall within a similar price range. One example would be the new Galaxy A51, which we would like to present to you here.
The A51 can do this:
- Quad camera: 48 MP wide-angle (f/2.0), 12 MP ultra-wide-angle (f/2.2), 5 MP macro (f/2.4), 5 MP depth camera (f/2.2) - without any telephoto camera
- Narrower bezel results in a larger display
In these aspects, the Galaxy A50 is as good as its successor:
- Super AMOLED display
- 4 GB RAM / 128 GB
- 4,000 mAh battery
- Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity
- Android 10 (as of June 2020)
Alternative to the Samsung Galaxy A50: Galaxy A51
In direct comparison to its predecessor, Samsung has further extended the display on the A51, reducing the bezel and giving the user a bit more viewing real estate. The impressive battery life has also remained the same, in addition to Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity. The new version also comes with a 4,000 mAh battery, which should be able to power users through the day well.
- While we are at it: Very affordable 5G smartphone from TCL
Samsung's decision to include the selfie camera as a center-placed punch hole as opposed to a notch is also commendable. This gives the smartphone a more "youthful" style, and the camera remains rather inconspicuous. You will be able to find a difference in specifications here:
Samsung Galaxy A51 vs. Samsung Galaxy A50 technical specifications
|Samsung Galaxy A51||Samsung Galaxy A50|
You can pick up the Galaxy A51 directly online from Samsung, but it will cost you €339 ($384) at the moment. If you decide to buy it, you can put it into your shopping cart immediately.
For a midrange device under €300 ($340), the Samsung Galaxy A50 does offer some nice features. In addition to a good 4,000 mAh battery, buyers can look forward to high-quality design and sufficient memory should you want to push the device to its limits once in a while.
However, at the end of the day, the Galaxy A51 is also available for virtually very little additional dough. This provides you with a larger display and a quad-camera setup instead of a triple camera island, although with somewhat questionable "advantage". All in all, you get pretty much the same device again - only that it is newer. You can then hedge your bets as you will be on the receiving end of new updates for a longer period of time.
So if you are flirting with the thought of a Galaxy A50, you would be better off with the A51. The Galaxy A50 has been updated to Android 10, but remains to be seen whether it will still be able to support Android 11 when it rolls out. With the Galaxy A51, we can be quite sure that it will be on the Android 11 roster.
A list of our other buying guides: