back to article Samsung Galaxy A52 5G: Sub-$600 midranger makes premium phones feel frivolous

Samsung's Galaxy A series is the company's midrange workhorse, and although it doesn't generate the same buzz as the Galaxy S series or China's wave of astoundingly well-priced kit, it quietly sells over 100 million units a year – accounting for a decent chunk of all smartphones sold on the planet. The A Series is pitched by …

  1. TimMaher Silver badge
    Thumb Down


    You may be pleased to know that O2 has just sent me a note saying that roaming charges in Europe are now back.

    Brexit anybody?


    1. druck Silver badge

      Re: Roaming

      And your comment on the A52 is?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: And your comment on the A52 is?

        Well, for an A road, it's not too bad. Quite useful for getting to Mablethorpe beach, or so I've heard.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Roaming

        Always gridlocked at dinner time.

      3. katrinab Silver badge

        Re: Roaming

        Nottingham Post warns of "nightmare traffic" due to three months of roadworks.

      4. TimMaher Silver badge

        Re: Roaming

        I know it seems a bit off message @druck but it was the only mobile phone article that sprang to mind and it was just after the letter arrived.

  2. elsergiovolador Silver badge


    China's wave of astoundingly well-priced kit,

    Why would you astoundingly well price a device that is filled to the brim with sensors, hmm?

    Why reviews fail to mention where the subject was made?

    If you want to make a privacy conscious and ethical choice you'll spend ages trying to find out whether the device was made responsibly.

    I went on the Samsung website about A52 and there is no mention anywhere where they made that phone either.

    1. elbisivni

      Re: Decoy

      I believe Samsung makes most of these low and mid range things in Vietnam and, to a lesser extent, India. It no longer has factories in China as its market share there has cratered and the country's labour costs have been rising.

    2. Altrux

      Re: Decoy

      ^^ Like they said, Samsungs are made in Vietnam or India (or some in Korea itself). Another good reason to buy one. No made-in-China dubiosity!

    3. MarkTriumphant

      Re: Decoy

      Which company makes phones in a place that you approve of?

    4. KimJongDeux

      Re: Decoy

      Most phone users have given all their personal date, for free, to a really creepy American from Westchester County. I reckon if the Chinese government also wants my pictures of my dinner and my dog, it's probably a bit late for me to complain.

  3. Missing Semicolon Silver badge

    Biometrics no loss.

    Since I can change neither my face nor my fingerprints.

    1. Chris 244

      Sure you can!

      Just have a Lefort osteotomy, genioplasty, and rhinoplasty. And once you can eat solids again pull some cookies out of the oven without using mitts. Simples. Repeat as required.

  4. Kubla Cant

    Genuine question: is it better to buy a superseded top-of-the-range Samsung phone that's now modestly priced, or a new mid-range model like this?

    1. mark l 2 Silver badge

      Well it depends on how long the superseded top of the range phone is in support for, as you should get 3 years of updates for a brand new Samsung mid range phone. Where as some flagships from a few years ago are now reaching end of support.

    2. Youngone Silver badge

      I am using a Galaxy S8, and it is a perfectly good phone still, apart from being made of glass which is stupid, and the non-removable battery is starting to show its age.

      Samsung don't want to support it any more, so I took the time to install Pixel Experience which has given me a more-or-less stock Android and it is so much better than the Samsung Android that I feel a bit silly for not doing it sooner.

    3. Dave K

      It's a toughie. Earlier this year I bought a Galaxy S20 about a month after the S21 came out. Two reasons I did this. Firstly because the S20 had dropped by a good £300 since the release of the S21. Secondly, because the S20 had an SD slot and the S21 didn't (and I had a 128GB card filled with music and videos I wanted to shift over from my previous phone).

      Performance of it is fantastic so far given that it's a recently ex-flagship model, but as others have said the one main caveat is that it is likely to lose support sooner, although Samsung's support cycle is a lot better these days.

      Still, I managed to extract over 5 years of usage from my previous LG G4. I don't personally mind using a phone that is out of support, but it does force you to be more careful what you download and makes some activities such as online banking much more risky (I always do that on my PC instead anyway).

    4. keith_w

      a new outdated phone.

      I bought an A12 about a month ago for about half the price of this one and am exceedingly pleased with it, especially the battery life.

      1. Lennart Sorensen

        Re: a new outdated phone.

        Well they came out pretty much the same time.

        Of course given the A12 gives half the storage, half the ram, slower video, LCD rather then AMOLED screen, at lower resolution and refresh rate, weights more, is bigger, has much lower quality cameras, runs an older version of android, no IP67 water resistance, etc, I would hope it was only half as much. But if none of those differences are things you would use, then half the price is great. In my case I bought the A52 (not 5G) since I like the features, but have no use for 5G and saved some money that way, even though Samsung doesn't even offer the non 5G version in Canada, so I bought it on ebay from the US instead, where it appears it was aimed at the puerto rico market (it defaulted to spanish).

    5. doublelayer Silver badge

      "Genuine question: is it better to buy a superseded top-of-the-range Samsung phone that's now modestly priced, or a new mid-range model like this?"

      It depends what you want in a phone. The top range may have better cameras or screens, faster processors, or more memory. However, if it's old enough, those will have become cheaper and the midrange will already have them. The modern midrange will have longer support time and will probably run a later version of Android. The previous top of the range is more likely to have support from replacement ROMs. Basically, decide on your budget and compare the ones available when you're looking to buy, because you can't guarantee what they will have and it all depends on your preferences.

    6. CrackedNoggin Bronze badge

      A "new condition" old phone, a "refurbished" old phone, or a "used" old phone?

      Nowadays you can't change the battery easily yourself, and it will cost ~100 currency units to replace it, so I wouldn't consider a "used" old phone unless "repairing" was an enjoyable experience for me.

      This year I bought a "new condition" old phone - Motorola 2020 g8, which is only old because the 2021 model is already out. A 5000 mAh battery and only 157 currency units.

      Actually bought it to use instead of a Garmin cycle computer, the cheapest of which is around 200 to 300 currency units.

  5. Altrux

    Excellent all-rounder

    I bought a pair of these from Argos, for me and the wife (cashback offer, phone not wife!), and no complaints so far. Apart from the Upday News app - can *anyone* tell me how to disable its newsflash updates? I've tried everything! So yes, Samsungs still have cr*pware pre-loaded, but much less than the bad old days.

    Hardware-wise, the phone is excellent. Beautiful, butter-smooth screen, fast and smooth, never skips a beat, and takes good pics with zero effort. It'll beat most 2018/19 flagships for 1/3 of the price. And the software is bang up to date: I got the June 2021 Android security patch update ... in June 2021. Incredible! This device should also be flagged to receive Android 12 early next year.

    Also - I've not tried the face recognition, but the in-screen fingerprint doodad works perfectly for me. Very handy, in fact (no pun intended)!

  6. Rustbucket

    Who's dollars?

    The $600 price seems to be Aussie dollars, which would include 10% GST (VAT).

    1. Diogenes

      Re: Who's dollars?

      Cant be AUD

      the lowest 5G version using my favourite search engine is around 640 AUD, and that is from Kogan(hawk spit)

      The 4g version is sub 600 AUD

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Big Brother

    Who would ever give their phone any biometric data?

    See title

  8. Piro Silver badge

    I have one of these

    ... but put it back in the box.

    I didn't like the size of the thing. I guess I'm in a minority.

    It does otherwise seem like it ticks a lot of boxes.

  9. Ian 55

    "The phone also feels a little unrefined due to its lack of wireless charging"

    Given how bad for the planet wireless charging is because of how inefficient it is, I'd class that as a good thing.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: "The phone also feels a little unrefined due to its lack of wireless charging"

      You're going to pick on a few watts lost during charging, and ignore how much energy it took to manufacature the phone? If you're that concerned about energy usage, you can't have a smartphone.

  10. Toby Poynder

    What about the software?

    Samsung hardware seems nice enough but I've always been put off by their aversion to stock Android, not to mention the dreaded Bixby. What is the software like on these? Is there much bloatware to get rid of?

  11. Anonymous Coward


    > Samsung doesn't ship earbuds with the A52, but does include a 15W charger that does the job...

    I'm not sure I could fit a charger into my ear and how does it do stereo?

    1. katrinab Silver badge

      Re: Earbuds

      Not sure that sticking a charger in your ear is a good idea. Could be dangerous. Probably there is a warning notice in the box about not doing this.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Earbuds

        In America it would be necessary fershur.

        1. Someone Else Silver badge

          Re: Earbuds

          And yet...there would still be folks who would ignore the warning. "Personal freedom" and all...

  12. WilliamBurke


    Does the mention of two different chargers mean that I can't just plug it into any old USB adapter?

    1. Lazlo Woodbine

      Re: Charger

      It's USB C, so you can connect to pretty much any USB equipped charger with a suitable lead.

      I havd an A21 and it charges nicely from my 25w Anker charger

  13. Cuddles


    You can get a phone more than good enough for any normal person for £200. Mine is now over 4 years old and is still perfectly good. On what planet does a phone costing three times more than that get classed as "affordable"? It may not be the most expensive phone available, but this is very much an expensive luxury item.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Spook Proof?

    One of the USP's of Huawei is that they do not, by default, cooperate with US security services and courts. I suspect that Samsung is not so good.

    (IDGAF if they might let in Chinese ones. They will not sell on my data to US "international" mega-corporations when they find I am not very interesting).

    1. aks

      Re: Spook Proof?

      Maybe by default, but if you want to sell a product into a specific marketplace you will have to obey the rules of that jurisdiction. Many USA companies discovered that when selling into China.

      My assumption has always been that Huawei refused to include USA Government spyware into their products and that was the major reason why it has been banned there.

    2. doublelayer Silver badge

      Re: Spook Proof?

      All of that is supposition. You assume Samsung installs U.S. spyware. You assume Huawei doesn't install U.S. spyware. You assume that theoretical Chinese spyware wouldn't sell useless information. Do you have proof for any of this?

      If we're going to state our assumptions without having any compunctions about proving them, here are mine. I assume neither Huawei nor Samsung install U.S. spyware, nor do they install Chinese spyware. I assume the NSA and CCP have plenty of exploits they'll use to target those devices when they want, but they didn't get manufacturer assistance with that. Have fun disproving that any more than I could disprove what you think.

  15. BGatez


    When did the price of a very usable laptop become reasonable for a phone?

  16. LovesTha

    Lack of wireless charging is the only thing missing from most mid-range phones. It's not that wireless charging is all that great, it's that plugging in USB C for years has a high chance of damaging the port.

    Can't we get wireless charging at this price point please!

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