The 20-30k segment is one of the most sought-after and hotly contested among smartphones, today. That is where you get the most value, if you’re conscious about your budget. That is where you see the most action happening, too. Almost every brand you can think of, wants a bite out of it. Xiaomi, Realme, and Vivo are the usual suspects. But the sheer potential and opportunity has also piqued the interest of OnePlus, lately. That is why the Nord happened and that is why we have a OnePlus Nord 2, a Nord CE 2, and also, a Nord CE 2 Lite now.
Samsung has been around, a lot longer than many of these brands. But it was never in the spec game so to say, to begin with, at least in the segment that we’re talking about here. And, as you can probably tell by looking at the state of the market, today, it is quite easy to be swayed by them especially when they come at unbelievably low prices. Samsung resisted giving in to this fad for a long time, but things are changing, and we feel OnePlus, particularly the Nord, has got a lot to do with it. Take a look at the Galaxy M53 5G’s spec sheet and you’ll get the context.
This new phone from Samsung is out to get the Nord, in this case the Nord CE 2, in almost every perceivable way. Every other competing phone it manages to bring down along the way, will be a bonus. There are some areas where the M53 just beats the pants off the Nord CE 2. There are some, where OnePlus gets the better of it. In few, the two are nearly evenly matched. Be that as it may, the point is, Samsung is – finally – starting to accept the drift of the market and designing its products accordingly rather than relying solely on brand name and recall. And when a brand like Samsung decides to do that, it can only lead to two things – alarm bells for competition and even better products for consumers.
As we said before, the 20-30k segment is where a lot of action is happening. With Samsung calling in the big guns, you can only expect things to get more exciting provided it continues to do this consistently.
Samsung Galaxy M53 5G spec-check
The M53 has a 6.7-inch 1080p Super AMOLED display with a 120Hz refresh rate, hole punch cut-out, and Corning Gorilla Glass 5 protection. The panel can peak 420nits.
Under the hood, you get a 6nm 8-core MediaTek Dimensity 900 chip which is paired with up to 8GB of RAM and 128GB storage. This is expandable. The phone runs One UI 4.1 based on Android 12. Biometrics are handled by a side-mounted fingerprint reader.
For photography, the M53 has a quad camera setup on the rear with a 108MP main, 8MP ultrawide-angle, and two 2MP cameras, one for depth, and another for macros. On the front, it has a 32MP camera.
Rounding off the package is a 5,000mAh battery with 25W fast charging. There is no charger in the box, though.
Samsung Galaxy M53 5G first impressions
The M53 follows the fantastic M52 and M51, two phones that have received a lot of critical acclaim for their stupendous battery life and reliable performance. The focus with the M53 is also on giving long-lasting battery life but Samsung has worked on making it desirable on other fronts, too.
This starts with the design itself. Even though it might look like a big phone on paper, the M53 is actually quite sleek. It is easy to hold and manoeuvre. Put simply, it is very well thought out. It looks unique too, not something that’s trying to copy an iPhone and its whole flattened-out aesthetic we’re seeing in almost every other budget phone, today. It’s a breath of fresh air. It is made of plastic, but Samsung does plastic well, as we’ve seen in multiple phones already. So, no major complaints there either.
The screen is typical Samsung, which is to say, it’s very good. Performance seems satisfactory in the brief time we’ve spent with the phone. The cameras, too, pack a lot of potential. The software support from Samsung is immaculate, with its phones getting updates far more frequently than ever. Perhaps the only area where the M53 falls back is in charging speeds and the fact that Samsung does not bundle any charging brick whatsoever in the box. But whether or not it becomes a deal-breaker would be completely subjective in the same way some would find the M53 to be lacking when it comes to graphics-intensive gaming.
Samsung has launched the M53 in two configurations. The base variant with 6GB RAM and 128GB storage is priced at Rs 26,499. The top-end M53 model with 8GB RAM and 128GB storage will set you back by Rs 28,499. Watch this space for our full review of the Samsung Galaxy M53 5G in the days to come.
| OnePlus Nord CE 2 review: A practical phone that gets most things right