(3 days left!) Be the first with a 200MP camera! Visit Samsung to reserve and gain $100 in Samsung credit!

SamMobile has affiliate and sponsored partnerships. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

Samsung Galaxy A72 review: Excellent phone that could have been better

Review
By 

Last updated: September 23rd, 2021 at 12:07 UTC+02:00

The Galaxy A50 and Galaxy A70 were different in a lot of ways, and so were the Galaxy A51 and Galaxy A71. The A7x line featured faster charging, more powerful processors, higher-resolution cameras, bigger batteries, and bigger displays. Now, with the Galaxy A52 and Galaxy A72, Samsung has cut short the number of differences: The Galaxy A72 gets a bigger screen and battery and a zoom camera on the back but is otherwise pretty much the same as the Galaxy A52 as far as the specs are concerned.

Those specs include highlights such as stereo speakers, Snapdragon 720G chipset, IP67 water and dust resistance, 90Hz display refresh rate, and a 64MP main camera with optical image stabilization. And those features already make the Galaxy A52 feel like a high-end phone, so does the Galaxy A72 offer enough additional benefits over the A52 to warrant a recommendation, or should you just buy the latter and save some of your hard-earned money in these uncertain financial times?

This Galaxy A72 review has the answer. But before we begin, I should say that this review will only look at Galaxy A72 features that are different from the Galaxy A52. To be more precise, it’s going to talk about that zoom camera and the battery life, as design-wise, the A72 is only slightly larger than the A52 and neither phone is too suitable for one-handed use. So, for details on the rest of the phone, be sure to check out our Galaxy A52 review, then come back here.

Camera

The 8MP 3x telephoto camera on the Galaxy A72 is, according to Samsung, the same sensor as the one found on the Galaxy S20 FE. It’s capable of up to 30x digital zoom, and picture quality in my experience is similar to that offered by the S20 FE: With the right lighting, you get good results till 10x magnification, even if the photos aren’t very sharp past 4x or so. By right lighting, I mean you need to take photos during the day and in well lit indoor environments. Low-light situations are tough for the zoom camera on any phone, and it isn’t any different here.

But, again, outdoors when there’s sufficient lighting, up to 10x magnification is where the A72 excels. However, I did notice a little bit of noise even in zoomed-in shots taken in bright daylight. Samsung has also left out the Zoom Lock feature that it introduced with the Galaxy S21 series and brought to older flagships with the One UI 3.1 update. Zoom Lock locks the frame in place once you reach 20x magnification or higher so you can take non-blurry pictures of faraway things, which can otherwise be a chore. Samsung can bring Zoom Lock to the A72 with a software update, but out of the box, it’s not available.

Of course, even without Zoom Lock, the Galaxy A72 sets itself apart from the Galaxy A52 with its zoom camera. More importantly, it finally brings a zoom camera to a lower price point in Samsung’s ever-growing smartphone lineup, which is a win for customers everywhere who want high-end zooming capabilities but aren’t willing to pay the price for a flagship phone, even one as affordable as the Galaxy S20 FE.

Here are a bunch of scenes captured at 0.5x, 1x, 3x, 10x, 20x, and 30x magnification:

The Galaxy A72 also has a macro camera, so technically, it’s a phone that can both capture objects that are really close to it and those that are really far, which can’t be said for any other Galaxy phone. But, as we keep mentioning, these 5MP macro cameras Samsung uses are just too bad to matter. The resolution is too low and it’s very hard to find out when the subject is in proper focus, so the macro camera doesn’t make this phone better in any meaningful way.

Battery life

The 4,500 mAh battery inside the Galaxy A52 is good for almost two days off the charger with light use and lasts a full day with heavy use, and the Galaxy A72’s 5,000 mAh battery provides similar endurance. It could have been better, considering the only difference on the Galaxy A72 is that its screen is 0.2 inches larger, but still, this phone will never let you down as far as battery life is concerned. Mind you, this is with 90Hz refresh rate enabled, which makes it very impressive as you don’t need to disable one of the phone’s best features to get great battery life.

Charging the battery from 0 to 100 with the supplied 25W charger takes around 1 hour and 25 minutes. That’s around 10 minutes longer than the Galaxy A52, but the A72 charges faster in the first half hour. A 10-minute charge takes it to around 17% while 30 minutes gets it to 47% (the A52 goes up to around 37% with a 30-minute charge).

Verdict

The Galaxy A72, like the Galaxy A52, is a mid-range phone that offers a high-end experience. You get an excellent display with 90Hz refresh rate that makes for smooth scrolling and animations, water and dust resistance, stereo speakers, a zoom camera capable of up to 30x magnification, the latest software out of the box along with a guarantee of three major OS upgrades, and mostly excellent performance with the Snapdragon 720G processor.

However, I feel the Galaxy A72 could have done with a higher-end chipset instead of the same one that powers the Galaxy A52. A 120Hz display would have been nicer, as well, at this price point. Remember, the Galaxy A52 5G comes with the Snapdragon 750G and a 120Hz display, so the Galaxy A72 sits below it in two important categories, which feels somewhat like a rip-off.

That leaves the zoom camera as the key advantage you get on the Galaxy A72, and you will have to decide how much that’s worth to you. If you don’t care much for the camera setup’s zooming prowess and are okay with a slightly smaller display, the Galaxy A52 is the device you should get (or the A52 5G if 5G is important). If you do care about those, then the Galaxy A72 makes a lot of sense, even if it isn’t as highly equipped in some respects as it should have been.

P.S.: Want to know something about the Galaxy A72 that’s not mentioned in the review? Ask me in the comments section and I’ll do my best to answer.

Samsung
Galaxy A72

What we like

  • Fantastic display, high refresh rate works very well
  • Strong performance (Snapdragon for everyone!)
  • Excellent battery life, 25W charging support
  • Main camera gets optical stabilization, 3x zoom camera is very handy
  • Promise of three major OS updates
  • Stereo speakers enhance the listening experience
  • Water resistant design
  • 3.5 mm headphone jack, microSD slot

What we don't

  • Limited usability for the macro camera
  • Stereo speakers could have been louder
  • A faster processor and 120Hz display would be nicer at the A72's price
  • Hybrid SIM slot makes you choose between dual SIM and microSD expansion
ReviewGalaxy A72
Load 7 comments

You might also like

First post-Android 13 update to Galaxy A72 brings January 2023 security patch

The last software update for the Galaxy A72 brought Android 13 (One UI 5.0) as well as November 2022 security patch. Today, the phone is getting one more update, and it brings January 2023 security patch. Samsung is rolling out the latest security update to the international variant of the Galaxy A72 (SM-A725F). The latest […]

  • By Asif Iqbal Shaik
  • 2 weeks ago

BREAKING: Galaxy A72 gets Android 13 (One UI 5.0) update

After the Galaxy A52, Galaxy M32 5G, and the Galaxy M52 5G, Samsung has released the Android 13 update to one more mid-range smartphone launched in 2021. The Galaxy A72 has now started getting the stable Android 13-based One UI 5.0 update along with the latest security patch. The stable Android 13 update for the […]

  • By Asif Iqbal Shaik
  • 2 months ago

Galaxy A72 is getting the October 2022 security update in a few markets

A new firmware update is now available for the Galaxy A72 in select countries. Samsung is rolling out the October 2022 security patch for the 2021 upper mid-range phone in a handful of regions, including Slovenia, Serbia, Russia, Ukraine, and Croatia. Galaxy A72 users in these countries can identify the October 2022 update by firmware […]

  • By Mihai Matei
  • 3 months ago

August 2022 security update rolling out to Galaxy A72

Samsung is continuing its rollout of the August 2022 security update. The latest phone to receive the new security patch is the Galaxy A72. The update is currently rolling out in Russia, and we expect it to be released in other countries within the next few days. The latest software update for the Galaxy A72 […]

  • By Asif Iqbal Shaik
  • 5 months ago

Samsung Galaxy A72 update brings camera improvements, July security patch

Having camera issues on your Samsung Galaxy A72? General stability issues in general use? Well, Samsung has a fix for both in the latest Galaxy A72 update that’s rolling out now in some countries, such as Russia and India (yes, despite the Russia Ukraine war, Samsung seems to be finding time to release updates in […]

  • By Abhijeet Mishra
  • 6 months ago

Galaxy A72’s June 2022 security update rollout starts with Asia

Just two weeks after getting the May 2022 security update, the Galaxy A72 has started getting the June 2022 security update. The new software is now available in Malaysia, and we expect Samsung to roll it out to other countries within the next few days. The latest software update for the Galaxy A72 comes with […]

  • By Asif Iqbal Shaik
  • 8 months ago
Pros Cons
Fantastic display, high refresh rate works very well Limited usability for the macro camera
Strong performance (Snapdragon for everyone!) Stereo speakers could have been louder
Excellent battery life, 25W charging support A faster processor and 120Hz display would be nicer at the A72’s price