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  5. Samsung Galaxy M31s Review: Another 'M' smartphone close to perfection

Samsung Galaxy M31s Review: Another 'M' smartphone close to perfection

Samsung Galaxy M31s comes with 64MP quad rear cameras, a 6,000mAh battery but an old Exynos 9611 processor. Read on its review to know how it performed

Vanshika Malhotra Written by: Vanshika Malhotra @vanshika1628
New Delhi Updated on: September 02, 2020 17:18 IST
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Samsung Galaxy M31s Review

Samsung, with its arguably popular Galaxy M series, is now a competitive smartphone maker in the budget segment standing neck-to-neck with Xiaomi and Realme. The South Korean tech major has been launching a number of budget smartphones and the most recent one to enter its wide portfolio is the Galaxy M31s, a variant of the Galaxy M31 that was launched early this year.

The smartphone puts its stakes in a huge 6,000mAh battery, Super AMOLED display, and 64MP quad rear cameras. I got to use the device for some time and here is whether or not it is a product worth going for if you have a budget of under 25k. Read on IndiaTV Tech’s review to find out.

Samsung Galaxy M31s Review: Design

The Galaxy M31s has received some notable upgrades if you compare it with the Galaxy M31. There is now an Infinity-O display instead of the Infinity-U one and we get better colour options. The smartphone also feels better in terms of build quality. It comes in two colour options: Mirage Black and Mirage Blue, out of which I got hold of the latter one. The whole Ombre vibe (called Premium Gradient by the company) looks different in a good way. Although made up of plastic (with added glass feel), the device doesn’t feel cheap in the hands. It is comfortable to use and one-hand usage proves quite convenient.

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Samsung Galaxy M31s Review

As for aesthetics, the Galaxy M31s has a rectangular quad-camera setup in the top left corner at the back. Apart from this, the back features the company’s branding at the bottom portion, making it look minimal and chic. Upfront, there is a punch-hole at the top, which makes way for less bezels. The device’s right side houses the volume rocker and a power on/off button that doubles as a fingerprint scanner, and the left side has a SIM tray. The top portion is left empty while the bottom portion has a 3.5mm audio jack, USB Type-C port, and speaker grille.

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Samsung Galaxy M31s Review

The smartphone has minimal elements yet appears trendy due to the blue colour option it has. A slight design improvement over the Galaxy M31 makes it a worthy device to go for.

Samsung Galaxy M31s Review: Display

The Galaxy M31s spans 6.5-inch and supports a Full HD+ screen resolution. It is based on a Super AMOLED display panel and features an aspect ratio of 20:9. The inclusion of a Super AMOLED display is pretty great for a device that falls under Rs. 25,000. The device comes with support for various display features such as adaptive brightness, dark mode, blue light filter, screen mode (vivid or natural), always-on-display, and accidental touch protection.

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Samsung Galaxy M31s Review

The display, much like any other Samsung device is bright and vivid. The content viewing, especially video-streaming is pretty detailed and calls for a well-lit display. Being a Super AMOLED one, the display is able to highlight the blacks well. The display is oversaturated and makes the content quite popping, something Samsung phones tend to have. Among others, the viewing angles were fine and sunlight legibility was decent too.

Samsung Galaxy M31s Review: Cameras

The smartphone is home to four rear cameras: a 64MP Intelli-Cam primary camera, a 12MP ultra-wide lens, a 5MP macro lens, and a 5MP depth sensor. The front camera stands at 32MP. The device comes with a number of camera features such as LED flash, Live Focus, 4K video recording (for both rear and front cameras), slow-motion videos, AR filters, 5x zoom, Single Take feature, HDR, and even custom filters.

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Samsung Galaxy M31s Review

Starting with the rear cameras, this department needs some praise! Cameras on Samsung phones began to impress me when I first reviewed the Galaxy M31 and the company’s jump from the M31 to the M31s is impressive. The images turn out quite well with details being highlighted. You do get oversaturated images and this can disappoint those who look for natural outputs (much like me) but the vivid colours make the scenic images look amazing. Most of the times, the images dismiss the need for any editing. The HDR mode is pretty decent and highlights the dark areas of an image well, the Live Focus creates a decent bokeh effect and the Single Take feature is a nice attempt to bring out good images and videos without much work. I liked it on the Galaxy S20+ too. 

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As for the front camera, the selfies produced are above average. You get details and a lot of oversaturation, that didn’t really impress me much. I feel the front cameras can do better on the Samsung budget and mid-range phones. Among others, the 4K video-recording was quite decent and slow-motion and hyper-lapse videos were delightful too. Additionally, macro mode proved decent but not well-detailed and the night mode was fine too.

Samsung Galaxy M31s Review: Spec Sheet

Here are the Samsung Galaxy M31s specifications:

Specifications Samsung Galaxy M31s
Display 6.5-inch Full HD+ Super AMOLED Infinity-O
Processor Exynos 9611
RAM 6GB/8GB
Storage 128GB
Rear Camera

64MP (main camera)

12MP (ultra-wide)

5MP (macro lens)

5MP (depth sensor)

Front Camera 32MP
Battery 6,000mAh
OS Samsung One UI based on Android 10
Extra Features 25W fast charging, side-mounted fingerprint scanner
Price Starts at Rs. 20,499

Samsung Galaxy M31s Review: Performance, Battery, OS

The Galaxy M31s is powered by the Exynos 9611 processor, much like its predecessor and comes in two RAM/Storage options: 6GB/128GB and 8GB/128GB, out of which I got hold of the base model. The storage options can be further expanded up to 512GB via a memory card.

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Samsung Galaxy M31s Review

The smartphone is a decent device and more often than not works like the Galaxy M31. It is a decent performer and carries most of the tasks with ease even with a number of apps in the background. My everyday tasks such as watching videos, browsing through the internet, clicking images, and playing some popular games such as Candy Crush Saga and even Subway Surfers was pretty good. While using the device you would feel a certain kind of ease, there is still some lagging. The smartphone tends to shutter at times but this gets reduced if you reduce the animations from the settings.

Among others, the fingerprint sensor’s placement is a good addition and is able to unlock the device in 1 or 2 seconds. The audio quality is good but feels slightly echoed at times.

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Samsung Galaxy M31s Review

The 6,000mAh battery is one of the main highlights of the Galaxy M31s and the inclusion of 25W fast charging proves better instead of the 15W fast charging available on the Galaxy M31. The smartphone was able to last more than a day with the aforementioned usage and more than 2 days on standby. This, for me, proved quite decent. The device also charged fully in slightly more than an hour, not causing much of a problem. The Samsung One UI based on Android 10 has seen some minor improvements and feels pretty decent. It is smooth, clean, and has new sections in the app drawer: Personal and Discover for a streamlined usage. The turn-off was the bloatware it comes with (filling your device with all popular apps these days that Samsung could get its hands on) and some ads via Samsung Store and Samsung browser.

Samsung Galaxy M31s Review: Verdict

The Samsung Galaxy M31s, starting at Rs. 20,499, is a more-than-decent device you can get. With improved cameras, Super AMOLED display, an amazing battery life, the smartphone tries to do it well for the company in the price segment. While it carries most of the features the Galaxy M31 already has, the better cameras, a punch-hole display and better design would make you go for it. However, the old processor and some performance lag act as a problem. Additionally, it stands against the likes of the Realme X3 with Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 Plus processor and 120Hz display and even the Xiaomi Redmi Note 9 Pro Max with a slightly lower price tag.

That said if the other two options don’t attract you, the Galaxy M31s is an option under Rs. 25,000 that covers most of the departments that qualify for a good device.

Pros Cons
Better design, display Performance not fully lag-free
Improved cameras Processed front cameras results
Side-mounted fingerprint sensor  

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