Specs summary

Screen
4.7"

The Samsung Galaxy Alpha's screen is 4.7 inches with 720 x 1280 pixels resolution.

Processor
1.8 GHz

There is a Samsung Exynos 5 5430 Octa core 1.8 GHz processor (CPU).

OS

The phone runs on the Android 4.4.4 KitKat (Update Available: 5.0.2 KitKat) operating system (OS).

Camera
12+ MP

You can take photos or capture video with the phone's onboard 12+ megapixel camera.

There is also a secondary front facing camera with 2+ megapixels resolution.

Storage
32 GB

Internal memory is 32 GB. No external card slot is available for expansion.

Battery
1860mAh

The phone is powered by a Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion), 1860 mAh battery. Samsung's performance ratings are 13.4 days standby time, 800 minutes (2G), 660 minutes (3G).



The Samsung Galaxy Alpha is one of the best handsets Samsung has EVER produced. I love this phone.

- Richard Goodwin , Know Your Mobile 


If you love the high-end tech Samsung crams into its phones but hate the plastic bodies, the Galaxy Alpha may well be the phone for you.

- Andrew Hoyle , Cnet 

Reviews summary

8/10AVG.
RATING
Based on 37 reviews

What's good

  • Thin and lightweight build despite aluminum frame
  • Smooth performance
  • Deep blacks and vivid colors

What's bad

  • Noticeable blue tinge on whites
  • Mediocre battery life

With the Galaxy Alpha, Samsung has finally moved away from an all-plastic design to one that incorporates a real metal frame. Despite the use of real brushed aluminum, the phone is surprisingly light at 115 grams, making it 14 grams lighter than the iPhone 6, and quite slim at 0.3 inches. Reviewers describe it as "sleek" and "svelte" noting how comfortable it felt in their hand. The back panel still offers the same textured plastic back and at first glance critics had a hard time distinguishing the Alpha from the S5. CNET adds, "It's unquestionably a phone you need to physically hold to fully appreciate." The only downside to the new metal frame is the loss of the S5's water resistance.

The design of the Alpha might seem premium, but the display left critics unimpressed. At 4.7-inches, the 720p resolution provides a good pixel density of 312ppi. But it isn't the sharpness of the display that turned off experts. Like Samsung's other phones, the Alpha uses Super AMOLED technology in its display and like the others provides exceptionally rich blacks and vivid colors. Unfortunately as many critics noticed, this came at the cost of the white color balance. Ars Technica states, "The bluish tint seen on whitespace in messaging apps and white webpages made surrounding text and images look weird…" In other areas, however, the display performed well. Reviewers were able to easily read it in both indoor and outdoor lighting situations.

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The screen might be a downgrade in resolution, but the specs are on par with the S5. US users will see the same 2.5GHz quad-core processor while the UK version has a 1.8GHZ octo-core processor. Both versions come with 2GB of RAM and 32GB of internal storage. Regardless of which version reviewers tried, they experienced speedy and smooth performance from more basic tasks to processor-intensive ones. The small 1,860mAh battery was able to make it through about 11 hours of moderate usage before reviewers needed to charge, but when watching video or play games, it dropped to around 9 hours.

Around the back of the Alpha is the 12MP main camera. It comes with the core Samsung settings which gives access to various mode and manual features. As well, it utilizes detection autofocus instead of contrast detection. Samsung boasts that this technology allows the camera to focus faster than others. When put to the test, experts did notice it was a bit faster than previous generation Samsung devices. Unfortunately, they also found that images tended to come out blurry more often than not.

Despite the sleek, new design and excellent performance, reviewers have mixed feelings about the Alpha. Trusted Reviews states, "The Samsung Galaxy Alpha conjures some mixed feelings. This is undeniably the best-looking phone Samsung has come up with…The big problem is that despite costing more than the Galaxy S5, it doesn't supersede the larger Samsung in any way." Engadget adds, "The only reason you'd want to pick this over the Galaxy S5…is that you prefer a smaller size or more solid build…Furthermore, it's not the best sub-5-inch Android device on the market…"


Reviews (8/10 Avg. rating)


Softpedia

Very impressive if you count some things out

from Softpedia

The Samsung Galaxy Alpha looks good and feels good. However Samsung has already shown us it can do better than this. The Korean tech giant has introduced the A series (with A3 and A5 models) which are two extremely tight handsets coming with all-metal bods.

However, even if the Alpha has a lot of positive aspects to it, the fact that its pricing revolves around the €599 ($745) margin won’t appeal to a lot of consumers. Yes, it’s cheaper than the Galaxy S5, but even so we’re still well into high-end territory...

More

The Samsung Galaxy Alpha looks good and feels good. However Samsung has already shown us it can do better than this. The Korean tech giant has introduced the A series (with A3 and A5 models) which are two extremely tight handsets coming with all-metal bods.

However, even if the Alpha has a lot of positive aspects to it, the fact that its pricing revolves around the €599 ($745) margin won’t appeal to a lot of consumers. Yes, it’s cheaper than the Galaxy S5, but even so we’re still well into high-end territory.

But if you have some money to spend and don’t mind the absence of a microSD card and the lower resolution, the Galaxy Alpha has all you need. 

Read full review

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Coolsmartphone

Nice to have metal but with a battery that impacts enjoyment

from Coolsmartphone

The Galaxy Alpha should be the phone most Samsung fans have been asking for. That metal frame adds a definite “something” to the mix and it’s a welcome departure for the company.

However, with a 720p resolution screen, 12 megapixel camera and a lack of external storage, the Alpha is not a spec heavy device that will blow you away. On the other hand, it does provide great build quality and a set of extremely decent mid-range specs at a mid-range price whilst looking like a premium handset...

More

The Galaxy Alpha should be the phone most Samsung fans have been asking for. That metal frame adds a definite “something” to the mix and it’s a welcome departure for the company.

However, with a 720p resolution screen, 12 megapixel camera and a lack of external storage, the Alpha is not a spec heavy device that will blow you away. On the other hand, it does provide great build quality and a set of extremely decent mid-range specs at a mid-range price whilst looking like a premium handset.

The camera was actually very good quality, especially if all you do is share on social media. The video was also smooth and clear, plus it was nice to see the addition of 4K recording even if not many people use it yet.

The screen felt a little small at times but that will only be due to me using the Note 4 before this (that has a massive 5.7 inch display). In reality the Alpha is a perfect size for a lot of people at just below the 5 inch mark. It’s not too small though, and let’s not forget that the iPhone 5 has a 4 inch screen!

Software is the traditional TouchWiz running on top of Android 4.4.4. Personally I am not a fan of this UI, but as this is Android there’s a wide range of other launchers available on the Play Store. Google Launcher being my personal favourite and the one that Nexus devices use. Samsung will roll out 5.0 Lollipop some time in early Q1 which brings some nice changes, even if they are customised like crazy by Samsung.

Overall the positives far outweigh the negatives with the few drawbacks being lack of expandable memory, something a lot of other devices lack anyway

The biggest issue, however, was that battery performance. After using the Alpha for a week and connecting to 3G and 4G I would struggle to get to the evening on a single charge. Often I would top the phone up around lunchtime in preparation for a bus ride home so I can listen to music or check my emails.

The positives though include the great build quality, a great camera with 4K video supported and it’s really slim too. 

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Brighthand

Good mix of sturdiness, comfort and compactness

from Brighthand

The Galaxy Alpha is a positive development for Samsung, but it’s not the evolution in quality that its upgrades would suggest. Its acceptance of higher-quality materials is welcome, but too much of its design is rooted in the blander Galaxy phones of the past. It is one of the few 4.7-inch phones with flagship-level performance, but its display is marred by inferior tech. Its software is a mess, relatively speaking, and many of the things it does do well are immediately countered by the fact that it’s overpriced by at least $100...

More

The Galaxy Alpha is a positive development for Samsung, but it’s not the evolution in quality that its upgrades would suggest. Its acceptance of higher-quality materials is welcome, but too much of its design is rooted in the blander Galaxy phones of the past. It is one of the few 4.7-inch phones with flagship-level performance, but its display is marred by inferior tech. Its software is a mess, relatively speaking, and many of the things it does do well are immediately countered by the fact that it’s overpriced by at least $100.

The Alpha deserves praise for being a capable Android phone that’s eminently usable with one hand, and its familiar design makes it a good choice for iPhone users who want to leave iOS, but its promise is better than its product. Look to the Xperia Z3 Compact or last year’s Moto X instead. 

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iTechTriad

A glimpse into Samsung's future

from iTechTriad

So out of a score of 10, I would give the Galaxy Alpha a 6/10. Hardware is great but it does lack some of the things that could have made it a contender such as a 1080p display, better battery life, and availability on more networks, and this is what I would personally like for Samsung to focus i...More

So out of a score of 10, I would give the Galaxy Alpha a 6/10. Hardware is great but it does lack some of the things that could have made it a contender such as a 1080p display, better battery life, and availability on more networks, and this is what I would personally like for Samsung to focus in on if they do decide to go with a 2nd gen of the Alpha. At the end of the day this phone as a lot of potential. Its just up to Samsung to make the Alpha a phone to be reckoned with.

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Notebookcheck

An overall interesting option in the flagship race

from Notebookcheck

Samsung launches a strong piece of hardware in the competitive high-end market with its Galaxy Alpha. Though it adheres to Samsung's own Galaxy S5, clear concessions have to be made in comparison. The refined manufacturing process of the new casing and the larger, 32 GB flash memory is likely the...More

Samsung launches a strong piece of hardware in the competitive high-end market with its Galaxy Alpha. Though it adheres to Samsung's own Galaxy S5, clear concessions have to be made in comparison. The refined manufacturing process of the new casing and the larger, 32 GB flash memory is likely the reason that Samsung demands 50 Euros more with a price of 649 Euros for its Galaxy Alpha. The exterior excites with a stable metal bezel and elegant design in return. The innards are also very respectable. A very economic and yet sufficiently powerful eight-core SoC developed by Samsung does a very good job in conjunction with the swift GPU and lush 2 GB of RAM – although the Galaxy S5 features considerably stronger equipment. On the other hand, barely any compromises have to be made with the 4.7-inch, Super AMOLED screen. Admittedly, the resolution of 720p does not seem appropriate because it is slightly too low, but it proved absolutely sufficient in routine use. The intuitive handling owing to the TouchWiz interface and the latest Android 4.4.4 KitKat alongside the multiple operation options really pleased us. The configuration generally proves very generous with high-speed Wi-Fi, NFC, and universal communication modules as well as a decent primary camera. The fact that the latter falters a bit in poor ambient light can be forgiven. In return, the long battery runtimes and a fingerprint sensor that provides security are appealing. The excellent voice quality is also commendable. The biggest point of criticism: Samsung axes the memory card slot in its Galaxy Alpha. Therefore, users who need more than roughly 25 GB (net), will have to use additional online storage.

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Digital Versus

A Samsung for the fashion-conscious

from Digital Versus

The Galaxy Alpha certainly has the desired effect regarding design: sophisticated, crafted... Samsung has at last proved that it is capable of something other than a plastic phone. But looks aren't everything. And while the Alpha might be very nice for general use, it's far from perfect. It faces...More

The Galaxy Alpha certainly has the desired effect regarding design: sophisticated, crafted... Samsung has at last proved that it is capable of something other than a plastic phone. But looks aren't everything. And while the Alpha might be very nice for general use, it's far from perfect. It faces stiff competition from the cheaper Sony Xperia Z3, which performs better on the whole, especially concerning battery life and photo/video quality.

Read full review

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The Indian Express

The stylish flagship that you can afford

from The Indian Express

The Samsung Galaxy Alpha is a good option for Samsung fans as well as those trying to switch over to a top end smartphone.

Read full review

The Samsung Galaxy Alpha is a good option for Samsung fans as well as those trying to switch over to a top end smartphone.

Read full review

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Fone Arena

A great and a much needed addition to the Galaxy line up

from Fone Arena

Samsung Galaxy Alpha is a brilliant compact flagship smartphone with all round performance. And, for the first time, the South Koreans have a chance to rub its shoulders against Apple. With the familiar Galaxy tag, the Alpha is bound to win many hearts in the Indian market and across the globe.

Read full review

Samsung Galaxy Alpha is a brilliant compact flagship smartphone with all round performance. And, for the first time, the South Koreans have a chance to rub its shoulders against Apple. With the familiar Galaxy tag, the Alpha is bound to win many hearts in the Indian market and across the globe.

Read full review

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Droid Life

A handful of great specs

from Droid Life

The Alpha could have been a real contender, however, its exclusiveness on AT&T, coupled with poor performance and average battery life should keep most buyers away from it.

If Samsung wants to make a real “iPhone Killer” device, all they need to do is remake this same exact hardware, but throw in a bigger battery and improve upon TouchWiz’s jank. Seriously, it might be perfect then. In our eyes, they could even get away with overcharging for it if the performance was not so held back by the huge amount of TouchWiz featured on the phone...

More

The Alpha could have been a real contender, however, its exclusiveness on AT&T, coupled with poor performance and average battery life should keep most buyers away from it.

If Samsung wants to make a real “iPhone Killer” device, all they need to do is remake this same exact hardware, but throw in a bigger battery and improve upon TouchWiz’s jank. Seriously, it might be perfect then. In our eyes, they could even get away with overcharging for it if the performance was not so held back by the huge amount of TouchWiz featured on the phone.

In conclusion, I absolutely love the design and feel of the Galaxy Alpha, but the software and performance struggles killed my experience after the first few days.

I am hoping that the Galaxy Alpha 2 sees a big performance boost. 

Read full review

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Recombu

Strong, lightweight design and good performance

from Recombu

Whilst there are certainly problems with the Alpha it’s a sort of sidestep in the right direction for Samsung - a well-balanced performance smartphone that serves as another fantastic Android alternative to Apple’s iPhone 6 alongside the likes of the Sony Xperia Z3 Compact.

On paper it may not have the best camera, offer the best feature set or even boast the best build quality of the current smartphone crop, but there’s no denying that this is one of the most considered smartphones Samsung has ever made. Some might balk at the £539 SIM free price tag, and that’s understandable, but this handset doesn’t go bigger for the sake of it; it focuses more on delivering quality and consistency that’s hard to fault...

More

Whilst there are certainly problems with the Alpha it’s a sort of sidestep in the right direction for Samsung - a well-balanced performance smartphone that serves as another fantastic Android alternative to Apple’s iPhone 6 alongside the likes of the Sony Xperia Z3 Compact.

On paper it may not have the best camera, offer the best feature set or even boast the best build quality of the current smartphone crop, but there’s no denying that this is one of the most considered smartphones Samsung has ever made. Some might balk at the £539 SIM free price tag, and that’s understandable, but this handset doesn’t go bigger for the sake of it; it focuses more on delivering quality and consistency that’s hard to fault.

The Samsung Galaxy Alpha may not be the top dog, but it’s certainly near the head of the pack. 

Read full review

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Experience metal touch with Samsung Alpha

One of the most significant features of this amazing Smartphone of Samsung is its exceptional and extra ordinary layout and design. Another interesting feature of this Smartphone is its tremendously sleek body which has given a handy look to this phone. Apart from all this, the camera quality and the...More
One of the most significant features of this amazing Smartphone of Samsung is its exceptional and extra ordinary layout and design. Another interesting feature of this Smartphone is its tremendously sleek body which has given a handy look to this phone. Apart from all this, the camera quality and the processor of this phone are also up o the mark. Thus purchasing this model of Samsung galaxy Alpha will not prove to be a foolish decision. for more details refer Samsung India site. Less


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Full Specs

Overview
Release date September 8, 2014
Regions available USA, Canada, United Kindom, India
Networks
GSM:
850/900/1800/1900 MHz
UMTS:
850/900/1900/2100 MHz
LTE:
1900/2100/800/850 /900/1800/2600 MHz
Data:
GPRS, EDGE, HSUPA, HSPA+, LTE
SIM card Nano-SIM
Dual SIM No
Operating System Android 4.4.4 KitKat (Update Available: 5.0.2 KitKat)

Compare Android Smartphones

Processor Samsung Exynos 5 5430 Octa core 1.8 GHz
Internal Flash Memory 32 GB
RAM 2 GB
ROM No
GPS Type A-GPS
Digital compass Yes
Flightmode Yes
Hearing Aid Compatible Yes
TTY/TDD Yes
Noise Cancellation Yes
SAR Head: 0.57 W/kg
Body: 0.61 W/kg
Languages English
Manufacturer Warranty 1 Year
Accessories Included AC Charger, Manual, Standard Battery
Power & battery
Type Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion)
Battery Capacity 1860 mAh
Removable Battery Yes
Wireless Charging No
Fast Charging No
Video Playback Time 600 minutes
Wi-Fi Surfing Time 660 minutes
3G Surfing Time 540 minutes
4G Surfing Time 540 minutes
Talk Time 800 minutes
3G Talk Time Up to: 660 minutes (3G)
Standby Time Up to: 13.4 days
Physical Characteristics
Design type Bar
Multi-Use Smart Phone / PDA Yes
Material Magnesium alloy
Colors Charcoal Black, Dazzling White, Frosted Gold, Sleek Silver, Scuba Blue
Dimensions [H x W x D] 13.2 x 6.5 x 0.7 cm (5.2 x 2.6 x 0.3 in)
Weight 115 grams
Water Resistant / Waterproof Unknown
Rugged design No
IP Rating No
Antenna Type Internal
Changeable Faceplates No
Display / Screen
Type Color
Technology Super AMOLED
Colors 16.7 million
Resolution 720 x 1280 pixels
Pixel density 312 pixels
Size 4.7 inches
3D No
Secondary Display No
Sensors Ambient Light, Proximity, Motion / Accelerometer, Gyroscope
Graphics Yes
Themes No
Backlit Illumination Yes
Zoom / Magnification Yes
Screen Orientation Lock Yes
Multi-Touch Yes
Fingerprint-Resistant Coating No
Additional Display Features Capacitive touch screen
Input / Navigation
Sleep / Wake Key Yes
Home Key Yes
Mute Key No
Input Type Touchscreen
Navigation Type Touchscreen
Predictive Text Entry Yes
Physical keyboard No
Voicemail Key No
Any Key Answer No
Voice Commands Yes
Keypad/Screen Lock Yes
External Volume Control Yes
External Media Playback Controls No
Fingerprint Sensor Yes
Call Management
Wi-Fi Calling No
Voice over LTE (VoLTE) No
Contact List Capacity Depends on system memory
Multiple Numbers Per Contact Email address, Other fields
Contact Groups Yes
Auto Answer No
Voice Activated Dialing Yes
Photo Caller ID Yes
Web / Email / Messaging
Web Browser Yes
Email Client Yes
Email Protocols POP3, IMAP, SMTP, Microsoft Exchange
Additional Email Features Gmail
Messaging SMS, MMS, Google Talk
Push-to-talk (PTT) No
Connectivity
USB Micro-USB 2.0
USB OTG Support No
Infrared No
Bluetooth 4.0
Bluetooth Profiles A2DP, AVRCP, OPP/FTP, HFP, HSP
WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n
WiFi Encryption No
Mobile Hotspot Yes
WiMAX No
Memory Expansion Slot No
Expansion Slot Info
PC Synchronization Yes
TV Out No
DLNA Support No
NFC Yes
UMA Support No
Data Tethering Compatibility Yes
Java Applications No
Brew Applications No
ECML / Digital Wallett No
PictBridge No
Camera
Main Camera
Aperture
Unknown
Resolution
12+ megapixels
Dual lens
No
Zoom
Yes
Flash
Yes (LED)
Additional Rear Camera Info
Auto focus, Effects, Face detection, Geotagging, ISO, Image stabilization, Panorama, Self-timer, HDR, Burst shot, Exposure value
Video Recording Formats
3GP / 3GPP, 3G2 / 3GPP2, H.264 / AVC, MPEG-4, WMV, ASF, FLV, AVI
Video Recording Parameters
Front Camera
Resolution
2+ megapixels
Zoom
Yes
Additional Front Camera Info
No
Video Recording Parameters
Audio / Video
Audio Playback Yes
Audio Formats MIDI, MP3, eAAC+, AAC+, AAC, AMR-WB, AMR, WMA, WAV, M4A, OGG, AMR-NB
Radio No
Video Playback Yes
Video Playback Formats 3GP / 3GPP, 3G2 / 3GPP2, H.264 / AVC, MPEG-4, WMV, ASF, FLV, AVI
Mobile TV No
Streaming Video Yes
External Speakers Yes
Headset Jack 3.5mm
Custom Ringtones Yes
Vibration Alert Yes
Downloadable Ringtones Yes
Ringtone Composer No
Ringer ID Yes
Haptic Feedback Vibration Yes
Speakerphone Yes
Apps
To-Do / Task List Yes
Calendar Yes
World Clock Yes
Alarm Yes
Stop Watch Yes
Timer Yes
Calculator Yes
Currency Converter No
Viewable document types No
Weather Yes
Stocks No
Maps Yes
NotePad Yes
Voice Memos / Recorder Yes
Games Downloadable
Apps Downloadable
Included Software / Apps -
More
Additional comments Other Names (AKA): Samsung SM-G850F

Additional Sensors
- Heart rate sensor

Additional Features
- Ultra Power Saving Mode
- Download Booster
- S Health 3.0
- Quick Connect
- Private Mode
Related Links Manual (PDF)
Samsung Galaxy Alpha Reviews
Where to buy Samsung Galaxy Alpha
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