Opinion

Samsung’s Exynos-powered mid-range phones don’t seem to be as optimized as those with Snapdragon chips

Over the last few weeks, I’ve used two of Samsung’s mid-range phones as my primary device. The Galaxy A7 (2017) came first, followed by the recently launched Galaxy C7 Pro. In terms of overall specs, both are packed with features that we wouldn’t have expected on Samsung devices in the same price range only a year or so ago. But after using the two phones back to back, I’ve come to realize that Samsung’s in-house Exynos chips might not be as optimized as equivalent Snapdragon chips from Qualcomm.

The Galaxy A7 (2017) and Galaxy C7 Pro are powered by the Exynos 7880 and Snapdragon 626, respectively. The names might be different, but the two chips are similar in their underpinnings. Both are made on the 14 nm process and have eight Cortex-A53 cores. The only major difference is the GPU, and the Snapdragon 626 is also clocked at a higher 2.2 GHz while the Exynos 7880 runs at 1.9 GHz. Okay, so the lesser clock speed on the Exynos (and one less gig of RAM) might explain why the A7 (2017) isn’t as fast as the C7 Pro, but it doesn’t explain why the A7 (2017) has major performance hiccups in day-to-day usage for a device that costs 400 Euro.

The A7 (2017), or at least my unit, seems to be unable to cope with simple tasks such as switching between apps and even moving back from an app to the home screen without a few stutters and hangups, and I got tired enough of the performance issues that I decided to move back to my S7 edge within a week. Then came the C7 Pro, which I’ve been using for a week or so at this point, and the performance on this thing is worlds apart from what I saw on the A7.

There are next to no stutters or freezes on the C7 Pro, and it feels like a much more optimized device despite carrying a similar price tag. Again, I know the Snapdragon 626 is clocked higher and the C7 Pro has 4 GB of RAM while the A7 has 3GB, but I don’t think those numbers should matter all that much in this day and age. To me, it feels like Samsung didn’t optimize the Exynos 7880 enough, and maybe it was because the company was hoping that features like water resistance would make people ignore the fact that the most basic aspect of the phone lacks in user experience?

The A7 is certainly a mid-range great phone, and it’s not exactly bad when it comes to software performance, either. It’s just that for the money you pay for it, you might not find its performance satisfactory, especially if you go from using the A7 (2017) to using the C7 Pro like I did. I had thought that the Exynos 7880’s focus on efficiency was the reason the A7 doesn’t perform that great, but the C7 Pro tells me the problem might lie in how well Samsung has optimized the chip, either generally or particularly for the A7 (2017). That’s something the company needs to change, and soon, given how its flagship Exynos chips have been doing so well.

Have you noticed performance issues on your Galaxy A7 (2017)? Are you satisfied with its performance, or do you not care because of all the useful features (like the strong battery life and water resistant design) offered by the phone?

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Ahmed Momen Galal
Ahmed Momen Galal

I didnt experience any issue that you are saying with my a5 2017,no lag,etc

WP00
WP00

Move to the S series and the opposite becomes true. What an embarassment.

kikoexe
kikoexe

i agree with the author.. though i came from the C7 (non-pro version) before i shifted to the a7 2017. what a mistake. the a7 heats up a lot and stutters do happen occassionaly. the only issue i had with the c7 was the camera that’s why i shifted. looks like i’m getting rid of the a7 2017 and will shift to the new c7 pro. also, the latest update for the a7 2017 (AQC5) suffers from battery drain as well. for the price of the a7 2017, i find it ridiculous why it doesn’t have a notification light. samsung… Read more »

ironbat
ironbat

My a5 (2017) suffers from keyboard sluttering as well as non responsive camera shutter, and non responsive touch. Blurry images etc. I reached out to service centre. They promised me to replace my touch panel

warlockba
warlockba

The advantage of Snapdragon is, that due to the high volume of sales and different manufacturers they have to serve (even though I do not like their SoCs – personal opinion though, and too long to explain why) their drivers are more mature overall. Samsung only uses Exynos inhouse, and for a few other companies – so yet again you see Samsung’s approach on stability (none). They do not really maintain their code, that is why Exynos phones tend also to get way less major updates, as they do not think past the release date.

wpbogdan
wpbogdan

alternate title: Abhijeet strikes again

manojmcn
manojmcn

Hahaha hahaha hahaha

harinsheth
harinsheth

Things i know
Buy flagships only from samsung
Otherwise no samsung at all ( go for oneplus or mi or anything )

Martin R.
Martin R.

Utterly nonsense… This years A series are great value for the money!!

And they have awesome batterylife and performance…

harinsheth
harinsheth

And then talking about processor for gaming and software updates , not to mention ir blaster feature ( will keep it rather then water resistance in countries like india ) also xiaomi mi5 do much well in very very less price then A series’ cheap exynos Only flagship exynos performs well that too only from note 4 and followed generations Mi5 has sd 820 with nice battery life too and xiaomi is willing to give updates to their handsets even after 4 yrs with latest features ( think of miui 8 fot redmi 1s and redmi 2 or redmi 2… Read more »

Martin R.
Martin R.

Miui.com an idea for you?

And what you say about performance is BS… I reviewed the A5 and it was awesome…

harinsheth
harinsheth

I am not against samsung but i support flagships only

I am rather samsung fan as i bought note 4 on the 1st day by pre order ( official local store ) and still using it as last yr i could not upgrade to note 7 you know why..

I may say A series is for girls / females
Real man wants processor

Also for real man money doesnt matter so one should buy note series only instead of A series and c7 or c9 pro !

o0MHJ0o
o0MHJ0o

” A series if for girls” What!? Real man wants processor” – Bloody hell your misogyny is so cringing! I had an A3 for a time between my S4 mini and S6 edge+ and it performed really well!
Clearly you’ve not looked into these phones yourself, I mean – clearly you haven’t!!
Maybe they will release a Galaxy A3 Man edition for you(!)

harinsheth
harinsheth

Because you didnt use other than samsung

Samsung successfully fooled you by providing inferior hardware then competitors in same price in a3

wpbogdan
wpbogdan

your parents have successfully fooled you into thinking you’re not adopted