Last few years have been kind to Samsung because of company’s shift in strategy to offer Android software upgrades as well as security features over number of years
Published 08.07.23, 07:52 AM
Android smartphones can be unbelievable in two ways — either frustrating or impressive. What can make a phone stand out in a sea of sameness? It needs to feel snappy when you are swiping away on an app or while playing games. Instead of a clunky version of Android, there needs to be a clean interface. Third, the presence of enough privacy-related features. Fourth, software upgrade and security support. Fifth, a great camera that should go easy on the battery. Samsung ticks all the boxes as good gets better with Galaxy M34 5G.
The new phone is coming in the midst of a number of launches — OnePlus Nord 3 5G, IQOO Neo 7 Pro and Nothing Phone 2 (set to launch on July 11). The last few years have been kind to Samsung because of the company’s shift in strategy to offer Android software upgrades as well as security features over a number of years (four generations of OS upgrades and five years of security upgrades). Following in its footsteps, other brands are making plenty of promises but when it comes to actually delivering the updates, some things are amiss. That’s where Samsung and Pixel phones differ — updates come fast and are helpful.
Bright and dazzling
Another achievement the Galaxy M34 highlights is a cohesive design strategy. Most Android brands are making every phone look different from their previous offering. The M34 has many of the design elements that you see on the more expensive Galaxy S series.
The focus is clearly on the display. The 120Hz 6.5-inch full HD, sAMOLED screen is among the best you will find in the market; it’s sharp and bright, enough to take care of the sunniest of days and it looks great while thumbing through social media feeds or during gaming. Ensuring some kind of protection during accidental drops, you get Gorilla Glass 5 protection.
Camera punches above its weight
I have been using the phone for 12 days and recently carried it to a few assignments. It’s a camera set-up that you can easily warm up to. The 50MP primary sensor (with OIS, yes it’s very much there) punches way above its weight, tackling flaws like overexposure and oversaturation. The Nightography technology which Samsung has been using for many of its flagship devices can also be seen here. While taking photos under uneven lighting, details hiding inside shadows are taken care of and noise gets reduced drastically. All the usual modes expected on a Samsung phone are here — Pro, Pro Video, Night, Single Take and a lot more.
The video department dazzles. You can capture videos at up to UHD resolution at 30fps but I suggest you stick to FHD@30/60 fps.
The 8MP ultra-wide camera turns in an impressive performance without killing too many details. Be it day or night, there are enough details while very little in terms of colour shift between the main and the ultra-wide snappers. The only caveat: You can shoot videos in ultra-wide at FHD@30fps to get the maximum stability. Overall, the camera output is good enough to match those of more expensive mid-range numbers.
Should you buy it?
Powered by Exynos 1280 SoC (5nm based), the experience is not stuttery at all. Forget benchmark scores because in the real world, devices are used very differently. It’s a midrange chipset that delivers. Battery-wise, you get a huge 6,000-mAh cell that supports 25W fast-charging and it’s big enough to easily last a day and a half even when you take a lot of pictures, video call using the 12MP selfie snapper and use GPS.
If it’s about having a phone that can capture respectable images, offer enough power to run all the apps and then allow you enough battery power to easily get you through the day, this phone will work for you. Samsung Galaxy M34 5G (upwards of Rs 16,999) has all the makings of becoming the default phone for the value-conscious customer.
AT A GLANCE
Device: Samsung Galaxy M34 5G
Price: Upwards of Rs 16,999
■ Powerful battery
■ Excellent software experience
■ Bright display
■ Good camera chops
■ Rear panel can be a fingerprint magnet
■ Some bloatware
Pictures: The Telegraph