The mid-range smartphone market (Rs. 15,000 – Rs. 20,000) is booming with new options and phones coming in every month. It has become very tough for a smartphone to survive the fight. However, there is no stopping for innovation and new products. The Samsung M40 is Samsung’s attempt to focus on an overall package that is affordable and packs decent features for a mid-ranger.
In the box, you get the Samsung M40 smartphone, 15W fast charger, USB-C cable, USB-C headphones, sim-ejector tool and some paperwork. The overall package is basic and what you miss is a 3.5mm headphone jack from the phone and neither a bundled case. Getting a case is a good idea as the phone attracts a lot of fingerprints right out of the box.
Looks and Design and Hardware
The M40 comes with a different look as opposed to most of the smartphones in the mid-range segment. What’s different is the punch-hole Infiniti-O display which breaks the monotony from the notches. The 6.3-inch display has minimal bezels with slightly bigger chin area. It uses a Screen Sound technology to use the screen as a speaker which works well considering a mid-range smartphone. The overall footprint of the phone is small enough and comfortable to hand in one hand. It weight at 170 grams and does not feel heavy for day to day usage.
The phone has the usual volume rocker and power button on the right side and sim-tray on the left. The top has one microphone and the bottom gets the USB-C type port, and the speaker grille. No, there is no headphone jack. The smartphone is made of polycarbonate material but it attracts a lot of fingerprints and scratches in case you do not like using a case. But it sure looks good and shiny at the back with the gradient falling off the rounded edges. The rear-mounted fingerprint scanner is a fast and works pretty well. My only complaint is the small size of it which I miss sometimes. But that’s just me nitpicking. You can use face unlock as well but it is not as fast as using the fingerprint scanner. The buttons feel a bit less tactile at times, especially if you are fiddling around with it a lot.
The display on the M40 is very bright and vibrant, but is it not an AMOLED panel. However, the colours and saturation look good and I have been having a good experience viewing my favorite content on its screen, especially without the notch. Outdoor usage is also acceptable as the screen is bright enough to handle bright sunlit situations with ease. It is surprising that Samsung has chosen not to put an AMOLED panel on this smartphone when even the M30 gets it.
Now coming to the hardware department, the M40 is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 675 chipset and it is coupled with 6 GB of RAM and 128 GB of onboard storage. You can further increase the storage with the hybrid SIM slot. The day to day usage on the phone felt good enough. The One UI based on Android Pie 9 felt smooth without any jarring or lags. Playing games was a good experience with PUBG and Asphalt 9 Legends going on easy without much of the phone heating.
The M40 draws its power from a 3500 mAh battery which is kind of a norm with most of the devices coming in this range. Given that you are a multimedia consumer and a smartphone gamer, the phone will tend to lose battery more rapidly
The camera department of the M40 is interesting. The rear camera is actually three cameras; 32-MP standard sensor at f/1.7, 8-MP ultra-wide sensor at f/2.2 and 5-MP depth sensor along with an LED flash. The front camera is a 16-MP unit. There is no telephoto option in this trio of cameras though. The camera does a good job of capturing images and the overall output is decent. A Bit more responsive AF performance would have been better and I hope Samsung fixes that at least with some software optimisation. The camera uses the 32 MP sensor to output 12 MP images which reduces the overall noise and improves the low light performance. The wide-angle camera also tends to capture nice images. However, the camera tends to overexpose the images a bit, especially in the daylight and I found myself constantly adjusting the exposure slider. Overall, considering its price. The camera is not much to complain about and will be sufficient for an everyday user.
Should you buy the Samsung M40, well yes if you like good design, intelligent form factor and want a good display which does not get a notch. You will still have to put up with a hole and I think that is okay considering the mid-range price point. The phone offers smooth performance as well as gaming but then loses out on the battery department which tends to run out sooner than expected. Samsung’s decision of adding a 15W fast charger is noteworthy and it makes up for the battery. It may not be the perfect package but it surely is a good one, especially in the design and the overall performance.