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Sunday, June 20, 2021

Samsung Galaxy M42 review: A dependable mid-range smartphone

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Top Features

Powerful processor

Battery

Build quality

Samsung recently launched Galaxy M42, its most affordable 5G smartphone in India. Designed for millennials, the smartphone is the first in the series to come with features like Samsung Pay and Samsung Knox. Powered by a mid-range Qualcomm processor, the smartphone packs a quad-rear camera and a big battery. The company claims that it is one of the best performing smartphones in this price segment. We used the Samsung Galaxy M42 to where it stands on this claim. Here’s a detailed review of the Samsung Galaxy M42.

Design
Samsung Galaxy M42 flaunts a stylish and trendy design. In fact, the smartphone resembles a lot to the last year launched Galaxy A42 in terms of design. The smartphone comes with a plastic body which offers a clean and classy look. The rear panel of the smartphone offers a gradient finish and is divided into four sections with each offering a lighter shade as you move down. We got the Black unit for review and this gradient back panel added more class to the design of Galaxy M42. The smartphone is quite sleek and is also comfortable to hold. The rear panel does act as a fingerprint magnet so you will have to keep a piece of cloth handy to clean the handset (if you decide not to use a cover).

This front is dominated by a 6.5-inch Infinity U display which houses the selfie camera in the centre. The power button and volume rockers are placed on the right side of the handset. The SIM card tray is located on the left, while the 3.5mm audio jack, USB Type C port and loudspeaker grill are placed at the bottom. The rear panel is home to a quad-camera setup and the Samsung branding. In all, Samsung Galaxy M42 is one of the good looking smartphones in this price segment.

Display
Samsung Galaxy M42 sports a 6.6-inch HD+ Infinity U display with 720×1600 pixel resolution. The display is not a high point of the smartphone as its low resolution is a bit disappointing.

Also, the 60Hz refresh rate and thick bezel around the display might not be liked by many. Samsung does offer full HD+ display in affordable smartphones like Galaxy M21, so it is not clear why the company incorporated an HD+ display in the smartphone.

However, despite all this, the AMOLED display reproduces punchy colours and also offers good viewing angles. You might face issues with the brightness of the display when using it under direct sunlight. Like the other M-series smartphones, this one also comes with Widevine L1 certification so you can easily stream online content in HD quality. The display is also protected with a coating of Corning Gorilla Glass v3 on top which keeps the display protected from scratches. Another important thing about the smartphone is that it is the first M-series phone to come with an optical in-display fingerprint sensor. The optical fingerprint sensor works fine and it can quickly and accurately read the print and unlocks the smartphone. Despite all this and decent display performance, the Galaxy M42 does not excel in this segment and you can definitely get smartphones with better display quality and refresh rate in this price segment.

Performance
Samsung Galaxy M42 is powered by an octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 750G processor paired with 6GB RAM. The smartphone packs 128GB internal storage which can be expanded up to 1TB by adding a microSD card.

One of the good things about the Samsung Galaxy M42 is its performance. The smartphone packs a powerful mid-range chipset — the Snapdragon 750G. The smartphone works smoothly and you will not face any issue or lag while performing routine tasks. There was no visible lag during multitasking and app switching was also pretty smooth on the smartphone. You can open multiple tabs in the browser and the smartphone will still perform without a glitch. You can use editing apps on the smartphone with ease and without facing any major problem.

Apart from this, the Samsung Galaxy M42 also handled gaming quite well. Along with casual gaming, you can also enjoy some graphic intensive games on the smartphone without any issue. However, the smartphone does heat up after a long gaming session.

The Samsung Galaxy M42 offers a satisfactory audio experience. The bottom-firing speakers offer loud and clear sound quality over loudspeakers. The audio quality was also quite good over headphones.

Coming to the software, the Samsung Galaxy M42 runs Android 11 operating system topped with the company’s own layer of One UI. The new version of UI comes with features like Google Discover Feed, Google smart home control and privacy features like removing location data before you share any image and also some camera improvements.

Apart from this, the new Samsung UI also makes the smartphone faster and smoother. You will also find bloatware apps on the smartphone but you can uninstall the ones you don’t need.

You also get a system-wide dark mode and themes which can be used to personalise and customise the smartphone. Another good thing about the Samsung Galaxy M42 is that the smartphone will receive three years of software and security updates.

The Galaxy M42 is also the first M-series smartphone to come with Samsung Pay and Samsung Knox, the company’s defence grade security system.

Camera
Samsung Galaxy M42 sports a quad-rear camera setup with a 48MP main sensor with f/1.8 aperture, an 8MP ultra-wide-angle lens with f/2.2 aperture, a 5MP depth and a 5MP macro sensor with f/2.4 aperture. The front is home to a 20MP selfie shooter. This mid-range 5G smartphone from Samsung manages to deliver a really good camera performance. The images turned out really well in every type of lighting condition.

The main camera on the smartphone delivers good results when used outdoors. The images captured during daylight and at night time turned out quite well. The images offer accurate colour reproduction and almost negligible amount of noise. The camera also did well when we captured images in artificial light. You also get various modes in the camera app like Pro, panorama, portrait which further enhance the camera experience.

The 8MP ultra wide camera offers an average performance. The images taken using the ultra wide camera were not that great. The macro shots were also fine and you can notice minute details without compromising on the quality.

The smartphone houses a 20MP selfie camera which offers some really beautiful and social worthy selfies. The portrait mode also offered quite good results and was able to create the blur effect well.

Battery
Samsung Galaxy M42 is backed by a 5000mAh battery with 15W adaptive fast charging support. Like all the other M-series smartphones, the Galaxy M42 also performs well in this department. During our testing the smartphone easily lasted more than a day of mixed usage on a single charge. Although the smartphone comes with adaptive fast charging support, it took us almost two hours to charge the smartphone from 0 to 100%.

Verdict
Samsung Galaxy M42 comes with a good build quality and it also offers a powerful mid-range processor. The smartphone comes with the latest operating system and will get three more Android updates in the future. It comes with a starting price tag of Rs 21,999 which makes it an affordable 5G smartphone. In our opinion this smartphone is for the people who only want to purchase a Samsung phone. The smartphone will face stiff competition from Realme 8 5G smartphone which is available at Rs 22,999.


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