Following on from where the hugely popular Samsung Galaxy J3 left off, the J5 makes an excellent case for being not just an excellent addition to the Galaxy family, but also perhaps one of the best value for money budget smartphones on the market today.
For starters, it looks as slick and stylish as some of its higher end siblings, bearing more than a passing resemblance to the Galaxy S series. Given the price point though, it doesn’t come with quite the same quality level of materials as these higher end Samsungs. That’s not to say it feels cheap in your hands though—The Galaxy J5 is a slim, lightweight and sturdy handset that stands confidently alongside others twice its price.
Though a 1280x720 resolution and pixel density of 294 pixels per inch might seem a little low for five-inch phone screen, in reality the display quality is more than impressive enough for these numbers not to cause a problem. Colours look bright, photos are crisp and text is sharp.
But a good looking phone that can’t keep up with your day to day needs won’t cut the mustard—luckily, the J5 has enough going on under the bonnet to more than cover all the smartphone essentials. Packing an ARM quad-core 1.2GHz Cortex A53 processor and 1.5GB RAM means that it transitions smoothly between screens, runs apps without a fuss and can handle a decent level of gaming. And on top of all that, it’s got a surprisingly long battery life for a budget phone. However, if you’re after a heavy duty, lightning fast multi-tasker, you’re best looking elsewhere.
Unfortunately, one of the only stumbling blocks the Galaxy J5 comes up against is its camera. Though an extremely respectable (especially for a budget phone) 13 megapixels, it does struggle a little in extremes of lighting. And with no HDR setting to try and balance this out, it can get a little annoying. However, it’s definitely worth mentioning that when conditions are spot on, the J5’s camera produces really stunning images. If you’re looking for a phone with a more consistently reliable camera around the same price point though, you’re better going with the iPhone 5s.
The Galaxy J3 was already a level up from your more basic smartphones, and the J5 is a noticeable level up from that. It does everything a budget smartphone should be able to do, but more importantly, does it well. Sure, the camera can sometimes be a little frustrating, but all in all it’s a very good all-rounder. And if that’s what you’re looking for, then the J5 is definitely worth considering.