To compete with the Chinese smartphone manufacturers, Samsung presented A-series for 2019 with the Galaxy A40s which is a relatively small smartphone. The Samsung Galaxy A40s is available since May 2019 and costs very less than the high-level flagship smartphones and without a contract. The technical equipment is appealing on the low price, and there is a modern AMOLED display with dual camera. In the following report, you will read how the Galaxy A40s has beaten the same level competitors.
The Samsung Galaxy A40s comes in a small cardboard box. The device color is already shown on the cardboard, the test device is equipped with a black back. The front is black in all colors, the back is also available in white, coral and blue in addition to the black version. In addition to the mobile phone itself, there is also a fast-charging power supply (5V, 2A or 9V, 1.67A), a USB Type C cable and a simple headset with a 3.5mm jack connection. There is also a short printed guide and a warranty card, of course. A protective cover or display film for the Samsung Galaxy A40s must be purchased separately and is not included.
Appearance and workmanship
The Samsung Galaxy A40s leaves a good first impression. At 144.4 x 69.2 x 7.9 millimeters, it is very compact for today’s standards and feels very good in the hand. The weight is also very low at only 140 grams. The frame is slightly rounded, on the left side you will find the SIM card slot and on the right side the power button and the volume rocker. On the bottom there is a speaker, a microphone and a USB Type C connection. Another microphone is located on the top of the device.
The black back shimmers depending on the light in rainbow colors – this looks very chic, but the back is also quite vulnerable to fingerprints! The workmanship of the Samsung Galaxy A40s is impeccable, but one notices that Samsung has no metal or glass installed, but uses plastic. A more expensive smartphone such as the Galaxy S10 feels noticeably better thanks to the glass back.
The display of the Samsung Galaxy A40s is 5.9 inches tall despite the compact case dimensions and thus fills almost the entire front. The design with the very thin display edges is really impressive. Only the lower edge (“chin”) is a bit thicker, which makes it unsymmetrical, but even expensive Android smartphones cannot do that better. The quality of the Super AMOLED touch screen is very good. It is very sharp with a resolution of 2340 x 1080 pixels and colors are displayed naturally. The display brightness is also very high on request, so that the display is still easy to read in bright environments and in the sunshine.
The Galaxy A40s can be unlocked by fingerprint or face recognition. In the test, both worked reliably and quickly, the fingerprint sensor is positioned on the back of the Galaxy A40s. Face recognition via the front camera is accompanied by a small pulsating light effect around the camera. Unfortunately, the display can only be activated via the power button on the side of the device. A “tap to wake” function is not available on the Galaxy A40s.
The software buttons for back, home and multitasking menu on the bottom of the Galaxy A40s can be adjusted in the settings and optionally reverse or hide completely (gesture control).
Technical data & speed
The Samsung Galaxy A40s comes with 64 GB of storage space, an expansion of the memory is possible via MicroSD memory card. For a middle-class smartphone that’s absolutely fine. The RAM is 6 GB in size, as a processor comes a Samsung Exynos 7904 Octa-Core used. In the test, the Galaxy A40s was sufficiently fast and always responded quickly, in some applications, such as app updates but you have to plan a little more time than expensive high-end smartphones.
The speeds over Wi-Fi and mobile were good. The Samsung Galaxy A40s supports both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz WLAN, the reception was neat, but not outstanding. The same can be said for LTE reception, in the LTE network of SmarTone could be measured in the test via speed test a speed of about 170 MBit/s in the download and about 50 MBit/s in the upload. The Samsung Galaxy A40s supports all currently important LTE frequency bands in Asia and Europe. You may not be able to use the A40s in American countries such as USA etc…Many more expensive smartphones do not have these problems because they support significantly more frequency ranges.
Dual camera with wide angle lens
Samsung installed two camera lenses on the Galaxy A40s: a 5 megapixel wide-angle camera and a 16-megapixel main camera. The main camera has a f1.7 aperture and can take very good photos when there is enough light. The pictures are rich in detail and naturally reproduce colors. Only the near limit could be a bit lower, because macro shots are only conditionally possible. In poorer light, for example at dusk, the pictures are often not as well done as in the daytime. There is no optical image stabilization on the Samsung Galaxy A40s, this feature is reserved for more expensive smartphones.
The wide-angle camera offers a nice change from the standard lens. It covers a much larger area and allows a completely different perspective. Unfortunately, the resolution of the camera with 5 megapixels is quite low, which is synonymous under picture quality clearly. Even in daylight the pictures are darker than the main camera and there is a lack of details. It should be better not to enlarge the images of the wide-angle camera.
The front camera offers a resolution of 25 megapixels, there is no auto focus. The pictures look good in good light, but are slightly too dark. In low light, the images are not so good, because even the high resolution does not help.
Videos can only be recorded up to a maximum of 1080p / Full HD. The video quality was average in the test, but other devices in this price range are usually not better either. Who expects a very good video quality, should better resort to another device.
Software: Android 9 and One UI
The operating system leaves a good impression on the Galaxy A40s. The current Android 9 is used, the user interface is Samsung One UI in version 1.1. Some may find the design of the software too colorful, but Samsung has done a good job here and offers tidy software with many setting options. The operation is simple and the software works quickly, so that here is a successful overall package.
Other: speakers, battery and co.
The battery of the Samsung Galaxy A40s is 3,100 mAh strong and has held out in the test with regular use (camera, music via Bluetooth, social media, surf) a full day. Only a few users will be able to create two days of service with the A40s. After all, the charging of the battery is very fast thanks to fast charging power supply. Unfortunately you have to do without wireless charging, which is currently only available on more expensive smartphones from Samsung. The battery is, as with any current smartphone, not easily interchangeable by the user.
Criticism must be pleased with the Samsung Galaxy A40s for the integrated speaker. This does not sound good, it lacks in volume. After all, it is sufficiently loud. Music should be heard better over a headset, in addition the Galaxy A40s offers a 3,5mm jack or the Bluetooth function. Calls via the earpiece sound flawlessly and the handsfree function is very good.
Another special feature is the Samsung Galaxy A40s FM radio. This works as soon as a headset is connected as an antenna. In the test, the radio made a good impression, the radio app is clearly designed and easy to use. Reception and quality were absolutely fine! For many users, the FM radio should be a purchase argument, because only the fewest devices offer this function.
Conclusion: the Samsung Galaxy A40 is recommended!
In the test, the Samsung Galaxy A40 left a very good impression, which is especially due to the excellent price-performance ratio. The Galaxy A40s was particularly impressed by the very good AMOLED display, which gives the device a futuristic design. But also the compact and handy dimensions, the software and the main camera left a positive impression. Less good is the quality of the wide-angle camera. Although it offers a new, varied perspective compared to the main camera, but is too dark and too low resolved. The speaker was not as good as expected in the test.
Anyone who is looking for a compact and handy Android smartphone and does not have high demands on camera and system performance can buy the Samsung Galaxy A40s without hesitation. If a similarly compact, but still much better equipped smartphone is sought, then remains as an alternative, for example, the Samsung Galaxy S10e – for three times the price.