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Samsung Galaxy A9 Pro Hands-on, First Impressions – Midrange Phablet?

Samsung Galaxy A9 Pro 06

Samsung Philippines has officially brought over the biggest member of their A series of devices over to the PH. The A-series of phones, if you’re not familiar, are supposed to be the middle of the road when it comes to specs, features, design and pricing. With the Galaxy A9 Pro, Samsung’s offering a device that’s suspiciously close to the Note 5’s performance while at the same time retailing at a couple thousand pesos less. Does the Galaxy A9 Pro scratch the itch for people looking for a high-end phablet?

Samsung A9 Pro (2016) specs

  • 1.8GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 652 octa-core processor
  • 4GB of RAM
  • 6-inch full HD Super AMOLED display, Gorilla Glass 4, 1920 x 1080 resolution
  • 32GB of expandable storage
  • 16-megapixel rear camera with f/1.9 aperture, OIS, LED flash
  • 8-megapixel front camera, f/1.9 aperture
  • Dual SIM
  • 3G, LTE
  • WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS, A-GPS, Fingerprint scanner
  • 5000mAh battery
  • Android 6.0 Marshmallow

Samsung Galaxy A9 Pro 10

Initial impressions, big, bold and beautiful

If there’s one thing that Samsung knows how to make by now, it’s beautiful smartphones. The Korean company has managed to fully embrace the metal and glass design mantra with their recent releases, and the Galaxy A9 Pro is no different. Its more than passing resemblance to their Galaxy S6 or Note 5 isn’t accidental – it’s the same design language that the rest of the 2016 A series family posseses, namely two panels of Gorilla Glass 4 sandwiched between a metal frame.

Samsung Galaxy A9 Pro 07

Since the phone is meant as a mid-range device and not a flagship, many of the high-end features of its pricier siblings are absent from the Galaxy A9 Pro. Samsung’s fast and accurate fingerprint scanner is thankfully still present, stuck on the almost trademark physical home button that’s present in all of Samsung’s phones.

Samsung Galaxy A9 Pro

As far as actual handling is concerned, the phone is quite large and obviously a little clunky to hold, especially if you don’t have gorilla hands like us. People with daintier fingers would probably find the Galaxy A9 Pro next to impossible to use one handed, but on the upside the screen is so big it’s an ideal platform to binge on YouTube videos and watch movies on.

Samsung Galaxy A9 Pro 08

Speaking of the screen, it’s a 6-inch, Super AMOLED panel with colors that simply pop, which isn’t surprising, since this is a Samsung phone we’re talking about. Samsung makes THE best displays on phones right now, and while people will always whine about their Super AMOLED displays being too saturated it’s perfectly fine with us.

Samsung Galaxy A9 Pro 01

Inside the Galaxy A9 Pro sits Qualcomms Snapdragon 652 octa-core processor along with 32GB of storage and 4GB of RAM. We’ve been impressed with Qualcomm’s mid-range offering when we reviewed the Vivo V3 Max, and we don’t expect the Galaxy A9 Pro to be any different. It’s fast, fluid and a sheer pleasure to use, and while it’s still injected with Samsung’s TouchWiz UI overlay, the experience has been pretty clean much like their other offerings.

Samsung Galaxy A9 Pro 05

That’s pretty much it for this hands on. Samsung Philippines is already selling the Galaxy A9 Pro for Php 25,990 in their stores.

John Nieves

John is a veteran technology and gadget journalist with more than 10 years of experience both in print and online. When not writing about technology, he frequently gets lost in the boonies playing soldier.

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