Samsung Galaxy J7 Prime: Optimal Prime

  • TECH
  • Monday, 12 Dec 2016

The Galaxy J7 Prime has a beautiful white and gold colour scheme with a matte metal back. — Photos: TAN KIT HOONG/The Star

There’s a lot to like about Samsung’s latest affordable Android.

More and more users nowadays are opting to buy affordable smartphones instead of going for high-end models because they offer more bang for the buck.

Even models costing about RM1,000 feature a good camera, beautiful display and large battery.

Samsung, the South Korean electronics giant famous for its high-end smartphones also dabbles in the affordable market segment with the Galaxy J series.

Leading the pack is the Galaxy J7 Prime which has a metal back with a matte finish, giving it a premium look. It’s also curved around the edges, making it nice to hold the phone.

It comes with 16GB of interal storage – that’s pretty standard for a phone in this price range.

Two notable improvements for the J7 Prime are the front facing fingerprint sensor and the 8-megapixel front facing selfie camera.  — TAN KIT HOONG/The Star
Two notable improvements for the J7 Prime are the front facing fingerprint sensor and the 8-megapixel front facing selfie camera. 

If you tend to store lots of videos or large files on your smartphone you can add more storage space via the MicroSD card slot.

Screen test

One of the most notable changes is in display as it no longer features Samsung’s popular Super Amoled display.

Instead you get a PLS (plane line switching) screen which is said to offer better viewing angles, colour reproduction and power consumption.

The colours are not as punchy but more natural and the screen is sharper as it’s now 1080p. The previous model only had a 720p screen.

With the J7 Prime, Samsung is catering to the selfie crowd with the improved 8-megapixel front-facing camera.

The higher resolution helped greatly in producing better selfies than other smartphones in the same price range.

A good selfie camera always comes with a beauty mode and the J7 Prime has three customisable options for skin tone, making the face slimmer and eyes larger.

The rear 13-megapixel camera produced photos with good detail and exposure. It also performed well in low-light conditions despite being a budget device, mainly due to the large f/1.9 aperture.

However, do not expect the camera to be as good as high-end phones that are double the price.

Save your settings

Being a budget device, the J7 Prime struggles with graphics-intensive games such as Asphalt 8, Banner Saga and Fruit Ninja, but not to the point that the games are not playable.

Similar to many phones with a metal back, it heats up a little during long gaming sessions.

It had no issues with web surfing, social media browsing or other day-to-day tasks.

The rear 13-megapixel camera excels in the entry level segment where high-resolution cameras tend to produce less than satisfactory images. — TAN KIT HOONG/The Star
The rear 13-megapixel camera excels in the entry level segment where high-resolution cameras tend to produce less than satisfactory images.

The J7 Prime is one of the new Samsung devices to come with 15GB of Cloud storage which can be used to store the phone’s setting.

It’s not much but maybe Samsung will increase the storage space in the future.

Unlike many smartphones in the affordable range which run on older versions of Android , the J7 Prime is preloaded with the relatively new Android 6.0 Marshmallow which is a bonus.

Got the curves:  Although large the smartphone is nice to hold.
Although large the smartphone is nice to hold.

The speakers are now on top, which is better than positioning them on the back like in the previous model.

But you will still run into problems when playing games or watching movies in landscape mode as your fingers could block the speakers.

The J7 Prime has a large 3,300mAh battery which allows it to easily last until the end of the day when used mainly for social media, light gaming sessions and shooting photos occasionally

That’s not too bad considering that it has a large 5.5in 1080p display.


Even though it’s just an entry-level phone, the build quality is good which is not surprisingly as it’s made by Samsung.

While it doesn’t have a number of features such as auto brightness and backlit hardware buttons, the J7 Prime is still one of the better models.

All in all, a beautiful display, decent performance, capable cameras and long battery life make the J7 Prime a good buy if you don’t want to splash your cash on a flagship device.

PROS: Good build quality;screen is 1080p, decent cameras;good battery life.
CONS: Hardware buttons are not backlit; lacks auto brightness setting.

Galaxy J7 Prime
Android smartphone

OPERATING SYSTEM: Android 6.0 DISPLAY: 5.5in PLS TFT display (1,080 x 1,920 pixels)
CAMERA: 13 megapixels (rear), 8 megapixels (front)
CONNECTIVITY: Bluetooth 4.1 WiFi 802.11 b/g/n, WiFi Direct
PROCESSOR: Exynos 7870 octa-core 1.6GHz Cortex-A53
MEMORY: 16GB internal storage (expandable to 256GB with microSD), 3GB RAM
BATTERY: 3,300mAh
DIMENSIONS (W x D x H): 75 x 8 x 151.7mm
WEIGHT: 167g
OTHER FEATURES: Fingerprint sensor
PRICE: RM1,199
RATING: Three and a half stars

Review unit courtesy of Samsung Malaysia Electronics, 1-800-88-9999

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