Samsung Galaxy M30 hands on review

More power to millennials?

What is a hands on review?
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Early Verdict

At a starting price of Rs 14,990, the M30 lands in a sweet spot but it remains to be seen if it is able to match the performance of other phones in the segment, like the Redmi Note 6 Pro.

For

  • Vibrant AMOLED display
  • 5,000mAh battery
  • Ultra-wide angle camera

Against

  • Slightly wider bottom bezel

Samsung launched its millennial-centric M-series just last month in India with two smartphones- the Galaxy M10 and M20. In February, Samsung seems to have almost doubled up its phone launches as the company recently announced its refreshed Galaxy A-series and the Galaxy M30, the third phone in the M-series.

The Galaxy M10 and Galaxy M20 are currently selling like hotcakes on Amazon India and let's check out what the M30 is able to bring to the table.

Samsung Galaxy M30 price and release date

The Samsung Galaxy M30 is priced at Rs 14,990 for the variant with 4GB RAM and 64GB storage. There's a 6GB RAM variant with 128GB of storage which is priced at Rs 17,990. The Galaxy M30 will go on sale for the first time on March 7 at 12 PM on Amazon India and Samsung India store. 

Design

The Galaxy M30 follows the same design language as its younger siblings. It is built from polycarbonate and has a glossy finish on the back. The plastic frame is curved around the edges to fit in the display and makes it feel like an inherent part of the body.  

The rear panel is smooth to touch and the gradient blue and black finish looks really cool. The triple camera setup on the back resides in a module on the top right corner with an accentuated silver ring over the middle sensor.

Overall, the built of the Galaxy M30 feels much similar to the other two phones in this segment. It fits in hand very well and is solidly built.

Display

The M30 receives an upgrade in the form of a Super AMOLED panel measuring 6.4-inches. It has a Full HD+ (2280 x 1080 pixels) resolution and sports the company’s infinity-U notch design. This makes for a 19.5:9 aspect ratio of the screen. The Galaxy M30 also happens to be the first M-series phone with the u-shaped notch on the front.

The notched design is even smaller than the regular waterdrop notch found on the Galaxy M10 or M20. Having said that, the M30 has a distinctively wider chin than the M30.

In usage, the Galaxy M30 seems like a good phone to watch videos and listen to music on. The screen leans a bit towards warmer tones. It comes with Widevine L1 certification and also supports Dolby ATMOS over headphones. Rest assured, we’re expecting a good time when we start binging on Netflix over the M30. We’ll let you know in any case in our full review.

Camera

The three camera setup on the M30 consists of a primary 13MP sensor with an f/1.9 aperture coupled with a 5MP depth-sensor and a 5MP ultra-wide angle sensor that enables a 123-degree field of view. Photography enthusiasts can play around with the wide-angle camera for some landscape imagery that stands out.

Although we are going to test the camera on the Galaxy M30 in more detail, our initial impressions are based on one picture, captured in regular mode and the same frame through the wide-angle mode.

As expected the wide-angle picture was able to take in more of the scene in the frame but sadly lacks in detail retention. The normal picture while able to maintain the clarity and sharpness felt a bit over-saturated.

The M30 has a 16MP camera for selfies on the front and we’ll be testing out that as well in our full review.

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Performance

Samsung Galaxy M30 is powered by Exynos 7904 chipset which is the same one found on the M20. It’s an octa-core CPU utilizing two Cortex-A73 clusters clocked at 1.8GHz for power-hungry tasks and six Cortex-A53 cores clocked at 1.6GHz for power-efficiency.

This is paired either with 4GB of RAM and 64GB internal storage or 6GB RAM and 128GB storage.

The M30 has the Samsung Experience 9.5 UI based on Android 8.1.0 and we have had our fair share of encounter with this UI on the Galaxy M10 and Galaxy M20. While it’s not the best experience on a smartphone in this range, Samsung’s optimizations should keep the show running without hiccups. Especially now that the company is offering 6GB RAM with the M30.

We’ll be running our usual tests on the Galaxy M30 and will make sure to play a couple of rounds of PUBG Mobile to provide a better and detailed performance analysis.

Battery

Samsung has outfitted the Galaxy M30 with a 5,000mAh battery which also supports fast charging via the 15w adapter provided in-the-box.

In our limited usage, the Galaxy M30 took around 30 minutes to recharge from 70% to 100%.

Early verdict

The Galaxy M30 offers a bump up in the screen and camera departments from the Galaxy M20. Our initial impressions of those are fairly positive and we especially love the display on the M30.

At a starting price of Rs 14,990, the M30 lands in a sweet spot but it remains to be seen if it is able to match the performance of other phones in the segment, like the Redmi Note 6 Pro.

What is a hands on review?

Hands on reviews' are a journalist's first impressions of a piece of kit based on spending some time with it. It may be just a few moments, or a few hours. The important thing is we have been able to play with it ourselves and can give you some sense of what it's like to use, even if it's only an embryonic view. For more information, see TechRadar's Reviews Guarantee.