Samsung today brought in a couple of J-series phones, the J7 Max and J7 Pro, that are interesting and exciting for more than a few reasons. The J7 Max, as the name suggests, is a big display phone that you can buy for Rs. 17,900 and the J7 pro that shall be available for purchase next month onwards for 20,900 INR has several J-series ‘firsts’ that it can brag about.
Before we jot down our first impression of the new Samsung J series phones, let’s enumerate the raw hardware specifications.
Samsung Galaxy J7 Pro and Galaxy J7 Max Specs
|Model||Samsung Galaxy J7 Pro||Samsung Galaxy J7 Max|
|Display||5.5-inch, Full HD, SAMOLED, 2.5D Glass||5.7-Inch, Full HD, IPS LCD display, 2.5D Glass|
|Processor||1.6GHz 14nm based Exynos 7870 octa-core||1.6GHz 16nm process based Mediatek Helio P20 octa-core|
|Internal Storage||64GB, expandable up to 128GB||32GB,expandable up to 128GB, Dedicated slot|
|Software||Android Nougat||Android Nougat|
|Primary Camera||13MP (main), PDAF, f/1.7 aperture, Dual Tone LED Flash||13MP rear camera, PDAF, f/1.7 aperture, dual tone LED flash|
|Secondary Camera||13MP front-facing camera, f/1.9 aperture||13MP selfie camera, f/1.9 aperture|
|Others||4G VoLTE, WiFi, Bluetooth 4.1, GPS, 3.5mm audio jack, USB OTG, NFC, Samsung Pay||4G VoLTE, WiFi, Bluetooth 4.1, GPS, 3.5mm audio jack, USB OTG, Samsung Pay Mini|
|Price||Rs. 20,900||Rs. 17,900|
Samsung Galaxy J7 Pro – AMOLED display, Full metal body, Samsung Pay
J7 Pro is not the first Samsung J-series phone to have an AMOLED panel, but yes, Samsung has been restricting itself to IPS and TFT LCD displays for the under 20K phones for the last couple of years.
This is also, perhaps, the first Samsung phone that has a full metal back. Samsung first resorted to using metal with Galaxy Alpha, but soon switched to Glass + metal design for it’s A and S series premium phones. J-series has had metal before with phones like J7 Prime, but the metal plate there was flanked by plastic trimmings on top and bottom. The Galaxy J7 Pro, on the other hand, has a full metal back with unique antenna band design that make it stand out from the budget crowd aping current generation iPhones.
On the front, you will find a 2.5D glass (which tends to easily attract finger grease), and a home button integrated with the fingerprint sensor.
These aren’t the only flagship grade features being passed on to the Galaxy J7 pro. The handset is also the first J-series phone to get Samsung Pay, a mobile payment solution that, thanks to MST technology, works across almost all card swipe terminals in India.
Samsung Galaxy J7 Max – Big display, Smart Glow LED, Samsung Pay Mini
The J7 Max is meant for people who demand more screen real estate. The 5.7-inch Full HD panel makes it a bit wider than what’s conventional. The display quality is pretty reasonable, but feels lacklusture when you comare it to the J7 Pro. The whites are tinged with blue.
Once again, there is 2.5D glass layered on top and a home-cum-fingerprint scanner button underlining it. The metal plate on the rear folds to fold a portion of side edges and has curved corners, whatever remains on the sides and on the rear is draped in plastic – kind of similar to what you see on Moto G5 Plus.
The Smart Glow LED light that we saw on Galaxy J2 last year makes an unexpected comeback on the J7 Max. This is a diffused LED ring encircling the rear camera that can glow in different customized colors for notification alerts. Since most people don’t keep their phones face down, we found this to be more of a cosmetic than value addition.
The J7 Max features a trimmed down variant of Samsung Pay, called Samsung Pay Mini that is secured by Knox software and can be used for online payments, and also for paying merchants that accept Paytm cash. The primary tech that allows you to swipe your phone at PoS terminals is missing, but it’s still a bonus since accessing Samsung Pay Mini on Samsung phones, executing payments, and even checking balance via UPI is simpler than using individual apps in our opinion.
The social camera
Both of these phones have what Samsung labels as ‘social camera’. What that essentially means is that the camera app on these phones is a lot more engaging.
You can directly pin social media, Mail and other apps where you would want to share clicked images on the camera viewfinder itself. Then there are live filters (borrowed from Samsung S8/S8+) using which the camera can detect your face and add animate objects just for fun. And the AR feature facilitates using the camera app to find and explores objects and places nearby (a Bixby thing?).
Well, the next best thing to a great camera is an engaging camera. Not that Samsung is compromising on hardware front under the disguise of software enhancements. Both phones have 13MP rear and front cameras, each with its own LED flash. The one on the rear has wide f/1.7 aperture lens and the one on the front has a f/1.9 aperture optics.
Software and Hardware
The software used is Android Nougat based Touchwiz that has similar layout and design as the Experience UI on the flagship Galaxy S8/S8+. In our books, this counts as a huge bonus for these new J-series phones.
On the J7 Pro, this software is driven by Exynos 7870 which is a 14nm based octa-core chipset with Cortex-A53 cores. It’s paired with 3GB RAM and 64GB storage. The J7 Max, on the other hands, is powered by 16nm process based octa-core MediaTek Helio P20 chipset paired with 4GB RAM and 32GB storage.
We will only get to tell how efficient the hardware is after our full review but at the very least, these phones are expected to suffice for basic and moderate users.
Samsung Galaxy J7 Max and J7 Pro first impression
The Samsung has really empowered its J-series with the new set of phones. They include premium design, assuring battery capacity, full and partial Samsung Pay, new and improved software, and an engaging camera. Of course, fine details will be revealed post the full review treatment, but the first impressions that the J7 Pro and J7 Max cast are largely positive even when they are a tad expensive compared to online exclusives.