Samsung Galaxy A7 (2017) Review: Marathoner With A Punch: Display, Connectivity, Battery Life

By 12:29 Wed, 18 Aug 2021 Comments


Display

As previously mentioned, the Galaxy A7 has grown since last year. Now with a 5.7-inch display diagonal, it sits squarely in Note territory. With all the distress Samsung's coveted productivity series has been going through lately, having a close alternative isn't really a poor thing. The same is accurate if you don't particularly care for recent curvy display designs. Then again, the A7 (2017) isn't alone in this category - there's the also excellent Galaxy C7 and the even bigger C9 Pro to possibly go for. But, more on that later.

Just like most of its siblings, especially in the higher price register, the A7 (2017) sports a Super AMOrganic Light-Emitting Diode (OLED) panel. Just like the smaller A5 (2017) sibling, it offers a resolution of 1080p, which does add up to a lower pixel density of 386 ppi. The Diamond Pixel arrangement within the panel helps with the classy screen sharpness to an extent, but it's still Pentile. This leaves the A7 (2017) at a slight disadvantage compared to a competing Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) with the same size and resolution. However, this is nothing recent and the A7 (2017) is still plenty sharp in our opinion.


AMOrganic Light-Emitting Diode (OLED) panels have become synonymous with punchy colors and the A7 (2017) doesn't disappoint in this department. If you are into that kind of color pallette, then the Adaptive color mode should be perfect for you. Of course, the reds, the greens and cyans are way off. Whites are also a bit bluish, but images just seem to pop off the screen, as usual - pretty eye-catching if nothing else.

You can also improve accuracy by switching to the Basic mode, which results in a pretty calibrated panel. In this case, it brings deltaE below 2 for almost every color. You do acquire a washed-out see too, so perhaps AmoledPHOTO represents a nice balance between color accuracy and punchiness.

The maximum classy screen brightness is excellent on the A7 (2017) at around 425 nits in normal mode and a hefty 533 through Auto boost. These results actually match last year's A7 (2016) almost number for number - impressive, when you consider the bigger panel size.

 Display test

 100% brightness

 Black, cd/m2

 White, cd/m2

 Contrast ratio

 Samsung Galaxy A7 0.00 349 ∞

 Samsung Galaxy A7 (2016) 0.00 425 ∞

  Samsung Galaxy A7 (2016) max auto 0.00 536 ∞

 Samsung Galaxy A7 (2017) 0 425

 Samsung Galaxy A7 (2017) Max auto 0 533

 Samsung Galaxy A5 0.00 398 ∞

 Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016) 0.00 421 ∞

 Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016) max auto 0.00 601 ∞

 Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017) 0 413 ∞

 Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017) max auto 0 559 ∞

 Samsung Galaxy A3 0.00 470 ∞

 Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017) 0 408 ∞

 Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017) max auto 0 518 ∞

 Samsung Galaxy C7 0.00 422 ∞

 Samsung Galaxy C7 (Max auto) 0.00 625 ∞

 Samsung Galaxy S7 0.00 391 ∞

 Samsung Galaxy S7 max auto 0.00 563 ∞

 Samsung Galaxy S6 0.00 363 ∞

 Samsung Galaxy S6 max auto 0.00 619 ∞

 Huawei P10 0.416 592 1423

 OnePlus 3 0.00 433 ∞

 OnePlus 3T 0 447 ∞

Combine the nice max brightness level with the effectively infinite contrast of the AMOrganic Light-Emitting Diode (OLED) panel and you discontinue up with excellent sunlight legibility. You won't have any distress working with the A7 (2017) outdoors even in the brightest of days.

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Sunlight contrast ratio

  •  Samsung Galaxy S6 edge+

     4.615

  •  Samsung Galaxy S7 edge

     4.439

  •  OnePlus 3

     4.424

  •  Samsung Galaxy S7

     4.376

  •  HTC One A9

     4.274

  •  Samsung Galaxy Note7

     4.247

  •  Samsung Galaxy A3

     4.241

  •  OnePlus 3T

     4.232

  •  Google Pixel XL

     4.164

  •  ZTE Axon 7

     4.154

  •  Samsung Galaxy S6

     4.124

  •  Samsung Galaxy S6 edge

     4.124

  •  Samsung Galaxy A7 (2017)

     4.124

  •  Samsung Galaxy Note5

     4.09

  •  Huawei Nexus 6P

     4.019

  •  OnePlus X

     3.983

  •  Vivo Xplay5 Elite

     3.983

  •  Oppo R7s

     3.964

  •  Apple iPhone 7

     3.964

  •  Huawei P9 Plus

     3.956

  •  Meizu Pro 6 Plus

     3.935

  •  Lenovo Moto Z

     3.931

  •  Samsung Galaxy A7 (2016)

     3.918

  •  Samsung Galaxy C5

     3.911

  •  Samsung Galaxy C7

     3.896

  •  Samsung Galaxy A5

     3.895

  •  Samsung Galaxy J7 outdoor

     3.879

  •  Samsung Galaxy J2 outdoor

     3.873

  •  Samsung Galaxy A8

     3.859

  •  Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016)

     3.817

  •  Motorola Moto X (2014)

     3.816

  •  Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)

     3.804

  •  Samsung Galaxy J7 (2016) outdoor mode

     3.802

  •  Xiaomi Redmi Pro

     3.798

  •  LG V20 Max auto

     3.798

  •  Sony Xperia XZ

     3.795

  •  Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016)

     3.789

  •  Apple iPhone 6s

     3.783

  •  Meizu Pro 5

     3.781

  •  Microsoft Lumia 650

     3.772

  •  Samsung Galaxy J7 (2016)

     3.756

  •  Oppo F1 Plus

     3.709

  •  Vivo X5Pro

     3.706

  •  Sony Xperia X Compact

     3.694

  •  Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017)

     3.688

  •  Apple iPhone SE

     3.681

  •  Huawei Mate 9

     3.68

  •  Samsung Galaxy A7

     3.679

  •  Meizu PRO 6

     3.659

  •  BlackBerry Priv

     3.645

  •  Apple iPhone 7 Plus

     3.588

  •  Apple iPhone 6s Plus

     3.53

  •  Motorola Moto Z Play

     3.526

  •  Samsung Galaxy J3 (2016)

     3.523

  •  Samsung Galaxy J3 (2016) outdoor mode

     3.523

  •  Acer Jade Primo

     3.521

  •  Microsoft Lumia 950

     3.512

  •  Oppo R7 Plus

     3.499

  •  nubia Z11

     3.466

  •  Samsung Galaxy J7

     3.422

  •  Meizu MX5

     3.416

  •  LG V20

     3.402

  •  Huawei P10

     3.379

  •  Oppo R9s

     3.352

  •  Oppo R7

     3.32

  •  Lenovo P2

     3.316

  •  Xiaomi Mi 5s

     3.276

  •  Samsung Galaxy J2

     3.235

  •  Sony Xperia X Performance

     3.234

  •  Xiaomi Mi Note 2

     3.228

  •  Motorola Moto X Play

     3.222

  •  Huawei Mate 9 Pro

     3.206

  •  Huawei P9

     3.195

  •  Lenovo Vibe Shot

     3.113

  •  Motorola Moto X Force

     3.105

  •  LG Nexus 5X

     3.092

  •  Huawei Mate S

     3.073

  •  Microsoft Lumia 640 XL

     3.065

  •  Sony Xperia X

     2.989

  •  Huawei Mate 8

     2.949

  •  Xiaomi Redmi 3S

     2.913

  •  Sony Xperia XA Ultra

     2.906

  •  LG G5

     2.905

  •  HTC One S

     2.901

  •  Xiaomi Redmi 3s Prime

     2.893

  •  Xiaomi Mi 5s Plus

     2.884

  •  Sony Xperia Z5

     2.876

  •  Microsoft Lumia 550

     2.851

  •  Lenovo Moto M

     2.813

  •  Xiaomi Redmi 3 Pro

     2.803

  •  Sony Xperia Z5 compact

     2.784

  •  Meizu MX6

     2.751

  •  LG V10

     2.744

  •  Xiaomi Redmi 3

     2.735

  •  Meizu M5

     2.71

  •  Sony Xperia M5

     2.69

  •  Huawei P9 Lite

     2.679

  •  Xiaomi Redmi 4 Prime

     2.679

  •  Vivo V3Max

     2.659

  •  Xiaomi Mi Mix

     2.658

  •  Xiaomi Mi 4i

     2.641

  •  Sony Xperia XA

     2.609

  •  Motorola Moto G4 Plus

     2.582

  •  Motorola Moto G4 Plus (max auto)

     2.582

  •  Meizu M5s

     2.58

  •  Xiaomi Mi 4c

     2.574

  •  LeEco Le Max 2

     2.567

  •  Microsoft Lumia 640

     2.563

  •  Asus Zenfone 3 ZE552KL

     2.563

  •  Lenovo Moto G4

     2.544

  •  Lenovo K6 Note

     2.544

  •  Oppo F1

     2.528

  •  Sony Xperia Z5 Premium

     2.525

  •  Huawei Honor 7 Lite / Honor 5c

     2.506

  •  Sony Xperia M4 Aqua

     2.503

  •  Oppo F1s

     2.481

  •  Motorola Moto G

     2.477

  •  Lenovo Vibe K5 Plus

     2.473

  •  Huawei G8

     2.471

  •  Huawei nova

     2.467

  •  Sony Xperia Z

     2.462

  •  Lenovo Vibe K5

     2.459

  •  Meizu m3 max

     2.447

  •  HTC 10 evo

     2.407

  •  Huawei Honor 7

     2.406

  •  Sony Xperia E5

     2.386

  •  ZUK Z1 by Lenovo

     2.382

  •  HTC 10

     2.378

  •  Samsung Galaxy J5 (2016)

     2.378

  •  vivo V5 Plus

     2.371

  •  Meizu m1 note

     2.362

  •  Huawei nova plus

     2.329

  •  HTC One E9+

     2.305

  •  Alcatel One Touch Hero

     2.272

  •  Lenovo Vibe K4 Note

     2.254

  •  Sony Xperia C5 Ultra

     2.253

  •  Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 (MediaTek)

     2.249

  •  Sony Xperia C4 Dual

     2.235

  •  Xiaomi Mi Note

     2.234

  •  Motorola Moto G (2014)

     2.233

  •  Huawei P8

     2.196

  •  Meizu M5 Note

     2.189

  •  Huawei Honor 6

     2.169

  •  Xiaomi Redmi Note 2

     2.166

  •  OnePlus Two

     2.165

  •  HTC One X

     2.158

  •  LG Aka

     2.145

  •  Xiaomi Redmi Note 4

     2.145

  •  Archos 50 Diamond

     2.134

  •  Xiaomi Redmi Note

     2.119

  •  Acer Liquid X2

     2.084

  •  Huawei P8lite

     2.078

  •  vivo V5

     2.059

  •  Moto G 3rd gen max manual

     2.026

  •  Xiaomi Mi Max

     1.996

  •  Sony Xperia E4g

     1.972

  •  OnePlus One

     1.961

  •  Meizu m3 note

     1.923

  •  BlackBerry Leap

     1.892

  •  Meizu m2 note

     1.892

  •  ZTE Nubia Z9 mini

     1.759

  •  Sony Xperia U

     1.758

  •  Asus Zenfone Selfie

     1.68

  •  Motorola Moto E (2nd Gen)

     1.675

  •  ZTE Nubia Z9

     1.659

  •  Jolla Jolla

     1.605

  •  Motorola Moto E

     1.545

  •  Sony Xperia M

     1.473

  •  Xiaomi Redmi 2

     1.311

  •  HTC Desire C

     1.3

  •  Sony Xperia C

     1.283

  •  Meizu MX

     1.221

  •  Sony Xperia E

     1.215

Connectivity

The Samsung Galaxy A7 (2017) is pretty well equipped with connectivity options - quite natural for a device, positioned correct below the flagship line. Just like its small brother, the A5 (2017), the A7 is based on the company's own Exynos 7880. On paper, the chip is capable of Cat.7 LTE speeds, however, Samsung only rates the A7 (2016) for Cat.6. That is up to 300 Mbps downlink and 50Mbps up, depending on your regional version and network.


We already touched upon Samsung's dual tray approach in the hardware overview section. It is a really elegant solution that works well and leaves you with two SIM slots and a dedicated microSD one - no hybrid compromises. It is fascinating to note that both the Single and Dual SIM models acquire two trays. On the former, there is no cutout for a second SIM next to the microSD. Presumably, that means no contacts and internal hardware either.

In terms of local connectivity, the A7 package includes dual-band Wireless Fidelity (Wi-Fi) a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth v4.2, as well as a Universal Serial Bus (USB) Type-C connector. Since the S7 came out with a micro Universal Serial Bus (USB) one, the refreshed A series is actually a bit ahead of the curve in this aspect. Universal Serial Bus (USB) OTG is part of the package, but there is no video output, MHL or otherwise.

NFC and Samsung's proprietary MST tech for emulating magnetic cards are also on board the A7 (2017) and are a potent mix for using Samsung Pay in supported markets.

The phone has an Frequency Modulation (FM) radio too, remarkable for tuning in to free live broadcasts that require no data connection.

Battery Life

The recent Galaxy A7 (2017) also boasts a bump in battery power to go along with the bigger screen. Samsung has managed to cram 3,600mAh inside the 7.9mm thin body. This is actually a whole 600 mAh more than the A5 (2017), which we already know makes pretty efficient utilize of its juice thanks to Samsung's Exynos 7880 Octa chipset. Combined with a Super AMOrganic Light-Emitting Diode (OLED) panel, the 14nm fabrication process of the chipset means some impressive battery numbers.

Naturally, the A7 (2017) outshines both of its smaller siblings as well as the flagship Galaxy S7 in this department. Sure, the latter definitely packs a stronger punch performance-wise, but its 80 hours of total endurance rating seem almost inadequate compared to the whopping 115 hours the A7 (2017) scored.


The improvements over the A5 (2017), as well as the older A7 (2016) are across the board. 28 and a half hours of talk time is no joke, and neither is 15 hours of Wireless Fidelity (Wi-Fi) web browsing - a task which brings the S7 down to its knees in under 10.

As far as standby goes, we employed our typical two-test approach to see how much of a incompatibility the Always On Display feature has. And once again, the respond is: A lot! However, it is worth noting that our testing procedure does not allow the automatic dimming or display switching off to hold place, which would be the case with normal pocket or night utilize (two scenarios where the AOD turns off automatically). So with that said, your mileage will vary on AOD - consider our score the worst-case scenario.

The battery testing procedure is described in detail in case you're interested in the nitty-gritties. You can also check out our complete battery test table, where you can see how all of the smartphones we've tested will compare under your own typical use.


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