With an upgraded processor, the A54 5G is again to being among the finest mid-range telephones round. It seems like a cut-down Galaxy S23, with stable specs throughout the board and little to not like.
Earlier Galaxy A fashions have been among the finest promoting smartphones globally, which places plenty of stress on new generations. Final 12 months’s A53 was a bitter disappointment however Samsung is again on monitor with the A54 for 2023.
Not a lot has really modified year-on-year, however the A53’s sluggish processor has been given a severe improve, and this is among the keys to how the Galaxy A54 is recommendable as a prime mid-ranger.
This $449/£449 sweet bar handset has the smooth seems of the flagship Galaxy S23 vary, a superb display with a 120Hz refresh fee, stable battery life, reliable cameras, and Samsung’s industry-leading software program assist.
There’s little to dislike right here, even when Samsung is behind plenty of rivals on charging speeds – and the shortage of a charger within the field will irk some patrons. It has fierce competitors although, with the likes of the Google Pixel 6a and Nothing Telephone (1) nonetheless a severe temptation for anybody not loyal to Samsung.
Design & construct
The Galaxy A54 is a classy smartphone, simply one of many best-looking mid-rangers in the marketplace. Whereas it seems just like its predecessor, small tweaks consistent with the flagship S23 vary, akin to extra rounded corners, hold issues recent and differentiate it.
Chris Martin / Foundry
Whether or not you want the brand new digital camera association or not is private choice however I’m a fan of the port-hole styling – though it does annoy me how wobbly it makes the telephone when it’s on a flat floor (it’s nearly unusable).
The telephone might really move because the Galaxy S23+ from throughout the room, and the phantasm holds up till you examine the finer particulars. It’s bought a plastic rear cowl and body, though the latter doesn’t really feel prefer it, and there’s nonetheless Gorilla Glass 5 defending the show.
Just like the S23, it’s a slippery buyer, however construct high quality is superb and it’s one among a choose few mid-range telephones with an IP67 mud and water-resistance ranking.
Chris Martin / Foundry
It’s a disgrace the handset has gained a little bit of weight, up 13g on the A53 to 202g. It’s not massively heavy, however in order for you one thing lighter then the Google Pixel 6a is a way more manageable 178g.
I’ve examined the plain Superior Black color however you may get the A54 in additional thrilling flavours of Superior White, Superior Lime and Superior Violet. Within the US, the official retailer solely has Graphite (black) and Violet – each nonetheless dubbed Superior, in fact.
Display screen & audio system
120Hz refresh fee
Stereo audio system
Samsung has lowered the display dimension barely to six.4in, however in any other case this packs principally the identical show specs because the Galaxy A53. The headline specs are that it’s an AMOLED panel with a Full HD+ decision and 120Hz refresh fee.
It’s shiny sufficient for out of doors utilization in robust daylight and the show can be blessed with wonderful colors and distinction as you’d anticipate from an AMOLED panel.
At 120Hz, the A54 stays one of many smoothest mid-rangers, with an Adaptive mode on by default or the choice to cap it at 60Hz for longer battery life (although that’s principally not a priority). It’s not the one 120Hz telephone at this value, with the likes of Xiaomi and Realme providing it too, however key rivals such because the Pixel 6a are solely 60Hz.
The show additionally advantages from an embedded fingerprint scanner which I discovered labored higher than the one on the Galaxy S23. The facial recognition can be respectable, and you need to use both whenever you unlock.
The A54 has no headphone jack however the inbuilt stereo audio system are fairly respectable, providing good velocity and readability. They do lack bass, although.
Specs & efficiency
Exynos 1380 chip
US choices restricted on RAM and storage
MicroSD card slot
A single digit change within the processor mannequin doesn’t appear very important, particularly on a mid-range telephone, however on this case it’s.
Whereas the Exynos 1280 present in final 12 months’s Galaxy A53 was gradual and stuttering, the A54 is clean and dependable due to an improve to the Exynos 1380, which boasts double the variety of high-power efficiency cores as its predecessor.
Chris Martin / Foundry
I’m not saying it’s flawless, so that you may need to attend some time for a posh night time photograph to course of or an enormous sport to load, however these are cheap expectations in a telephone this value. On the whole, day-to-day operation, the telephone can sustain simply effective and it may well run video games like Asphalt 9 at prime quality settings.
There’s disappointment for American clients as there’s solely the choice of 128GB storage and 6GB of RAM, whereas the UK and different markets go as much as 256GB storage and 8GB of reminiscence. Word that I’m testing the UK mannequin right here, which means the US model is likely to be barely extra sluggish.
Because the identify suggests, the Galaxy A54 5G comes with 5G connectivity in addition to all the standard nuts and bolts akin to NFC, Wi-Fi 6, and Bluetooth 5.3.
Some customers will discover it useful that it’s dual-SIM and there’s even a microSD card slot capable of take as much as 1TB of storage, though it does deplete one SIM spot.
When you’re , right here’s how the Galaxy A54 compares in our regular set of benchmark exams.
50Mp principal digital camera
The A54 packs a fairly typical trio of rear cameras, with a 50Mp principal lens joined by decrease decision ultrawide and macro cameras. You shouldn’t anticipate issues like telephoto lenses on a telephone this value.
Chris Martin / Foundry
The primary digital camera can snap wonderful high quality photos in a spread of conditions. It’s bought an f/1.8 aperture and advantages from optical picture stabilisation (OIS) to keep away from blur from a shaky hand.
Outcomes are detailed, vibrant and greater than acceptable for social media and even printing out. Low-light efficiency is best than most mid-range telephones too, though the telephone nonetheless has its limits right here – you’ll have to spend extra for a flagship for really wonderful night time mode pictures.
The ultrawide is what you’d anticipate: good to have when you could match extra within the body, however on the apparent expense of high quality in comparison with the principle shooter.
In the meantime, I had plenty of enjoyable with the macro lens which is among the finest I’ve examined on any telephone. With a set focus, you could have time and persistence, however can get some pleasing photographs (I’ve added the identical pictures from the principle digital camera to indicate the distinction). It’s not a must have, however offers you some enjoyable choices.
The oddity is that the macro mode is tucked away within the ‘extra’ menu despite the fact that it’s a devoted lens (not that it’s solely Samsung that does this) and that is the place you’ll additionally discover different choices akin to Evening, Panorama, and even Professional mode.
Chris Martin / Foundry
My greatest bugbear is with Samsung’s tuning, as colors aren’t completely correct between the totally different cameras. I can let that go on a mid-range telephone (it’s not too dangerous) however I can’t stand the oversaturated – an understatement – look of the Meals mode, which makes it appear like I’ve used some nuclear elements.
As for the entrance, the 32Mp selfie digital camera is a spotlight with baggage of high quality and choices akin to a stable portrait mode and a wider angle view for becoming extra individuals or background in.
Video recording can be excellent, largely as a result of OIS on the principle digital camera. By default, you’ll be recording in Full HD at 30fps however you possibly can go as much as 4K on the identical framerate if you want. Even at 1080p, the standard is nice with vibrant colors and clean footage even when being dragged alongside by my canine.
Battery life & charging
No adapter included
Charging remains to be a sore level when evaluating Samsung to the broader market, particularly when you think about the likes of Xiaomi and Oppo are hitting speeds of over 200W now. The 25W charging on the A54 isn’t notably fashionable and, for higher or worse, Samsung doesn’t provide a wall adapter within the field – solely a cable.
Chris Martin / Foundry
I examined the telephone with a 67W quick charger from one other model and solely noticed it prime as much as 16% in quarter-hour and 31% in 30. If speedy charging is essential to you then you definately’ll must look elsewhere.
Thankfully, issues get higher after we take a look at the battery life on supply. There’s a big 5000mAh cell and the telephone can comfortably final a full day of combined utilization with 4-5 hours of display time. I’m a lighter person than that on a standard day and might handle two days earlier than needing to cost, which is nice.
Software program & apps
One UI 5.1
4 years of OS upgrades
Software program is a robust level for Samsung as a lot on mid-range telephones as it’s on flagships. Right here you’re getting the most recent model of Android and the agency’s One UI pores and skin. The identical can’t be mentioned of some rivals which are sometimes lagging behind on Android 12.
Mentioned rivals typically don’t have any official ensures of future updates both. Nonetheless, Samsung guarantees 4 years of OS upgrades, so that you’ll not solely get Android 14, however as much as a minimum of Android 17 on this telephone.
I’d nonetheless personally have a Pixel telephone for the pure Android expertise however One UI is completely serviceable and has so much to love. It’s simple to navigate and appears nice. Options just like the sidebar for favorite apps are helpful, although digital assistant Bixby will not be a lot.
Samsung nonetheless insists on putting in plenty of apps from the off together with loads of duplicates of Google companies you’re extra possible to make use of. And regardless of me unticking the packing containers, the A54 rudely nonetheless put in a trio of undesirable video games.
Different pre-loaded apps are arguably extra helpful akin to Disney+, TikTok, and OneDrive however you possibly can a minimum of take away any you don’t need.
Worth & availability
Within the US, the Galaxy A54 is available in at $449, with just one mannequin obtainable on the time of writing from the official retailer, with 128GB of storage and 6GB of RAM. You can too get Galaxy Buds Reside with $100 off together with trade-in offers, plus presents akin to 3-months of Spotify Premium. Nonetheless, Amazon has cheaper costs if you happen to simply need the telephone.
These of you within the UK can get the telephone for £449 (£50 greater than the A53 when it arrived), with a 256GB model fetching £499. Both manner, you get 8GB of reminiscence.
It’s obtainable from a spread of locations together with Amazon, John Lewis, Very, and Currys with many providing free Galaxy Buds 2 till 25 April. Samsung matches that deal but additionally has nice incentives like wonderful trade-in costs on your previous telephone.
Discover out extra in our the place to purchase the Galaxy A54 information.
The value places it up in opposition to some robust competitors because the Google Pixel 6a is $449/£399 and infrequently on supply. The Nothing Telephone (1) can be £399, however not obtainable within the US. Take a look at our chart of the perfect mid-range telephones for extra choices.
I’m relieved to report that Samsung is again on monitor with the Galaxy A54 5G after a miscue final 12 months.
A lot is identical, with top-notch styling, IP67 safety, among the finest screens on a mid-range telephone, and a reliable set of cameras. Moreover, battery life is stable and Samsung continues to impress with its software program improve assure.
This could have all been effective on the A53 had efficiency been as dependable however fortunately that’s mounted this 12 months with a extra highly effective Exynos processor.
It’s not mechanically the perfect mid-range telephone you should purchase, particularly with some wonderful rivals at cheaper costs but it surely’s simple to advocate even if you happen to’re not a Samsung loyalist.
Nonetheless, it could be good if Sammy might set up some sooner charging and permit customers to decide on an influence brick without cost when ordering.
Android 13 with One UI 5.1
6.4in AMOLED, 2340 x 1080, 120Hz, 19.5:9 ratio
Exynos 1380 chipset
128/256GB of storage (expandable by way of microSD)