Galaxy A55 Preview: Samsung playing it safe, leaving us wanting for more – Ultra-Sim

Galaxy A55 5G Intro

Samsung has just announced its latest mid-range champs, with the more well-equipped and high-end of the two being, of course, the Galaxy A55 5G (Yes, Samsung still insists on putting “5G” after the name).

This new generation comes with a few upgrades sprinkled throughout, which, combined together, manage to accumulates meaningful update to the A5x series. That being said, don’t expect to see anything groundbreaking, especially if you are coming from a Galaxy A54 5G.

We have a bit of sad news with this year’s edition of the Galaxy A5x series though… For one reason or another (it is not specified), Samsung has decided that it will not be selling the Galaxy A55 5G in the U.S. this year. For the first time in five years, the only mid-ranger from the “A” series will be the new and cheaper Galaxy A35 5G.

Frankly, our guess is that Samsung has opted to exclude the Galaxy A55 5G from the U.S. market for one main reason. You either go for the much cheaper A35 5G, or jump straight to the more expensive Galaxy S23 FE, or even the Galaxy S24.

What’s new about Galaxy A55 5G

  • New chipset: Exynos 1480
  • A refreshed design with slightly larger body
  • Higher glass durability
  • Metal frame instead of plastic
  • 8GB of RAM
  • Samsung Knox security

Table of Contents:

Galaxy A55 5G Specs

The Galaxy A55‘s specs are somewhat unexciting. The clear changes are the size, chipset, and the slight increase in the display size. There’s also the longer software support, which could be the most viable reason for upgrading to the A55 5G besides the new processor.

Galaxy A55 5G Design & Colors

The Galaxy “A” series has kept a look that’s so close to Samsung’s flagship “S” series that some might even have trouble distinguishing it from the more premium lineup. This time around, however, the Galaxy A55 5G comes with one small but visible change in its design that makes it stand out from Samsung’s other models.

More specifically, we are talking about that bump on the right side of the frame, which houses the volume and power buttons. Some are calling this bump the “Key Island”, which has a nice ring to it if we do say so ourselves.

This is a design that Samsung first tested on the Galaxy A15 and A25, which were released at the end of 2023 and are even more budget-friendly. It seems the company thought it would fit in nicely to its mid-range lineup, and we kind of agree. We will let you know if our opinion changes once we get to spend some time with the phone though.

Speaking of the frame, it is now also made out of metal, unlike the plastic frames Samsung used for previous iterations of the A5x series.

Size-wize, the A55 is a bit larger than its predecessor, measuring at 161.1 x 77.4 x 8.2mm vs the 158.2 x 76.7 x 8.2mm that is the Galaxy A54 5G. It is also a bit heavier, with 213g to its name compared to the 202g of last year’s model.

Protection-wise, the A55 5G’s display is made with Gorilla Glass Victus (upgrading from Gorilla Glass 5), which is more resistant to scratches and shattering. We are happy to see that IP67 dust and water resistance rating persists with this new generation too, as it is the best protection against the elements that you get at this price point.

Colors-wize, there are four options available. Here are the Galaxy A55 5G colors:

  • Awesome Iceblue
  • Awesome Lemon
  • Awesome Lilac
  • Awesome Navy

Here are images showcasing the A55 5G in all four colors:

As far as the Galaxy A55 5G unboxing experience goes, Samsung is rather simplistic on that end, unlike some other players like OnePlus. The Galaxy A55 5G comes with no charger in the box, no case, and no screen protector. You get a charging cable, some documentation, and the phone itself.

Galaxy A55 5G Display

The Galaxy A55 5G comes with a larger display compared to its predecessor, measuring at 6.6 inches (vs 6.4″). Samsung has also seemingly increased the peak brightness given its explanation of vision booster: “both the Galaxy A55 5G and Galaxy A35 5G looking clear and bright in a range of light conditions thanks to Vision Booster.” No specific nits and numbers are given though, so stay tuned for our own display tests.

The company did not mention any other improvements to the display in its announcement. The rest of the specs remain the same, such as the 120Hz screen refresh rate for that buttery smooth feel when scrolling and swiping, as well as the support for HDR10+ video content.

As for biometrics, Samsung is yet to include a ultrasonic fingerprint reader in one of its budget phones, and this has not changed with the Galaxy A55 5G. That said, the optical fingerprint readers the company uses on its mid-range phones are still plenty fast and accurate, so this is not too big of a disappointment.

Galaxy A55 5G Camera

The Galaxy A55 5G comes with a triple camera setup on its back, reminding us of Samsung’s more premium flagship phones, the Galaxy S24 series. That said, instead of rocking a third telephoto camera, the company continues to use a macro camera, which in this case is the same 5MP one that is featured on the Galaxy A54 5G.

In fact, the rest of the cameras also seem to be the same as the A55 5G’s predecessor, including the 50MP wide (main) camera, and the 12MP ultra-wide. The same is true for the 32MP front-facing selfie snapper too.

These cameras should offer better results, however, thanks to that new chipset that Samsung has placed inside the Galaxy A55 5G. Samsung also says that the A55 5G is introducing advanced AI Image Signal Processing (ISP), which produces stunning low-light images never seen before on Galaxy A series. Stay tuned for sample images and the results of our dedicated camera tests.

Galaxy A55 5G Performance

Performance is the one area Samsung has focused on improving the most with the Galaxy A55 5G. The phone comes with the new Exynos 1480 chipset, which is built on the 4nm process, unlike the Exynos 1380 that is built on the 5nm process.

We won’t know just how much faster the new processor is for certain until we get to do our own performance tests on the A55 5G, but it should be the more meaningful upgrade among the other changes that Samsung has introduced.

Besides the newer chipset and the higher raw power it brings along, there is also the option to buy Samsung’s mid-ranger with 8GB of RAM this year. So far, users living in the US have only had the chance to get the A5x series with 6GB of RAM at the most.

Galaxy A55 5G OneUI / Android version

Until recently, Samsung was the leading manufacturer when it came to software support provided to its phones. Last year, however, Google took that title by increasing its software support to 7 years. Samsung quickly followed that up on that with a 7 year window for its flagship Galaxy S24 series.

We were really hoping the company would bring that long software support to its mid-range lineup too, but alas, the A55 5G comes with the same 4 years of Android updates and 5 years of security patches as the A54 5G did.

The A55 5G comes with OneUI 6.1 on top of Android 14 straight out of the box, which means the phone will go up to Android 18 with the 4-year update schedule.

One thing we should definitely mention here is that Samsung has introduced its Knox security software to the A series with this new generation. This should make the company’s mid-rangers much more secure compared to before.

Galaxy A55 5G Battery and Charging

The Galaxy A55 5G comes with the same 5,000 mAh battery size and 25W of wired charging that the A54 5G came with. In other words, we expect similar results during our battery and charging tests. The one area where things might be a bit different is the battery life, which would be a result of the new chip’s better power efficiency.

Unfortunately, the A55 5G does not have wireless charging, so it won’t be the first Samsung mid-ranger to introduce that feature.

Galaxy A55 5G Audio Quality and Haptics

Samsung did not mention anything related to the audio quality or haptics of the A55 5G, so we expect the same experience on these two fronts from the new generation.

We were a bit disappointed with the audio quality coming out of the Galaxy A54’s speakers. The sound was getting severely distorted at higher volumes, especially the lower frequencies where the bass should be.

On that end, we have our fingers crossed that Samsung surprises us with some unmentioned upgrades here. We will let you know in the final review once we spend some time with the phone.

Galaxy A55 5G Competitors

The price for the Galaxy A55 5G is the same as the one its predecessor was launched at, i.e. $449 (or slightly higher considering the Europe price was bumped by a tiny amount). So, in this price bracket, there are a couple of competitors that easily come to our minds: the OnePlus 12R, which came out recently, and the Pixel 7a from last year.
Now, the OnePlus is an absolute beast and a worthy phone of the flagship killer moniker. The Pixel 7a, on the other hand, is lagging behind a bit in some regards, but don’t forget that this May we expect to see the Pixel 8a, which will undoubtedly be better competition to the Galaxy A55 5G.

Galaxy A55 5G Summary and Final Verdict

Samsung seems to be in a bit of a pickle with the Galaxy A55 5G. Yes, it included some of AI pazzaz and some improved durability with the metal frame and more durable glass, but it still feels a bit bland when placed next to the competition. Exactly where it fits in its price range will highly depend on its camera performance, which we can’t wait to test out.

That said, the A5x series from Samsung is one of the most popular and most bought phone models on the market, so there isn’t much incentive for the company to make any big changes to it. Sad, but true.

There’s also the fact that now the A series works with Samsung’s Knox security system, which gives users that extra sense of security from any malicious intent. Additionally, the display has improved and we have a slightly different design, but that’s about it.

Stay tuned for our full review of the Galaxy A55 5G, where you will find more details in the form of test results for the camera, display, as well as the battery life and charging.

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