Samsung Galaxy M31 smartphone review

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Content

  1. Contents of delivery
  2. TECH SPECS
  3. Positioning
  4. Design, dimensions, controls
  5. Display
  6. Battery
  7. Memory, chipset, performance
  8. Communication capabilities
  9. Camera
  10. Software – features
  11. Impressions

Contents of delivery

  • Smartphone
  • Charger (fast charge 15W)
  • USB Type cable
  • Clip for SIM tray
  • Instructions

Samsung Galaxy M31 (SM-M315F / DS) smartphone reviewSamsung Galaxy M31 (SM-M315F / DS) smartphone review

TECH SPECS
Dimensions and weight 159.2 x 75.1 x 8,9 мм, 191 грамм
Body materials Plastic
Display 6.4 inches, 1080×2340 pixels (19.5: 9), SuperAMOLED, 403 ppi, automatic brightness control, AlwaysOn Display, Corning Gorilla Glass 3, maximum brightness 420 nits
Operating system Google Android 10.0, OneUI 2.0
Platform Exynos 9611 (10 nm technology), four Cortex A73 cores up to 2.3 GHz, 4 Cortex A53 cores up to 1.7 GHz, Mali G72 MP3
Memory 6 GB RAM, 64 GB ROM (49 GB free), UFS 2.1, microSD memory card up to 512 GB
6/128 GB version (free 118.4 GB is the main version in Russia) and 8/128 GB
Wireless Interfaces Wi-Fi a / b / g / n / ac, dual-band, Bluetooth 5.0, NFC
Сеть 2G: 850/900/1800/1900
3G: 850/900/1900/2100
4G: B1/B3/B5/B7/B8/B20; 4G TDD LTE B38/B40/B41
Dual SIM, nanoSIM (not combo slot)
Navigation GPS / GLONASS / Beidou / Galileo
Sensors and connectors USB Type C (USB 2.0), OTG
Accelerometer, Proximity Sensor, Light Sensor, Gyroscope, Geomagnetic Sensor
Rear fingerprint sensor
Face unlock
Main camera 64 (f / 1.8) + 5 MP (f / 2.2, depth of field sensor) + 8 MP (f / 2.2, wide angle) + 5 MP (f / 2.4, macro), LED flash, 4K video recording, electronic video stabilization on FullHD
Front-camera 32 MP (f / 2.0), bokeh effect, various additional effects
Battery Li-Ion 6000 mAh, talk time up to 44 hours, video playback up to 29 hours, LTE battery life up to 22 hours 
Degree of protection No
Colours Blue, Black, Red (Ocean Blue, Space Black, Red)
Sound FM radio
Payment System Google Pay 
SAR Head SAR: 0.48 W / kg
Case SAR: 1.130 W / kg (European Test Method)

Samsung Galaxy M31 (SM-M315F / DS) smartphone review

Positioning

It so happened that the Samsung M31 is almost a complete copy of the M21, the new model has increased the memory capacity, changed the colors, and also improved all the cameras. But otherwise it is still the same M21, which was distinguished by a good price / quality ratio. I will repeat the block about positioning from the M21 review, since it does not change in any way.

Samsung created the M line quite late, it is positioned for online sales, that is, it does not offer a large margin for partners. This line can also be found in individual federal chains, among those who are ready to sacrifice their profits, but attract buyers with devices with a good price / quality ratio. Many perceive the M-series as a winning proposition, and it is so if the buyer is willing to give up some specific features, for example, a fingerprint sensor built into the screen. For some, these are trifles, someone considers it essential that everything in a smartphone is at the maximum level. The M Series is for smart, rational buyers, these are workhorses that can last a long time, both literally and figuratively.

Since the M-series is capable of making serious competition with similar models in the A-series, no attention is drawn to these devices, they have practically no marketing. This leads to the fact that many buyers simply do not know about the existence of such devices, do not see them on the shelves. But there is no difficulty in buying them, and for many this is a very interesting acquisition that can give more for less money.

Design, dimensions, controls

The model is available in three colors – blue, black and red.

Samsung Galaxy M31 (SM-M315F / DS) smartphone review

The body is made of ordinary plastic, while it was made iridescent and varnished. This is good, as it helps to avoid scratches, marks from hands, they are not visible on the case, including the black model. Scratch resistance is a big plus.

Samsung Galaxy M31 (SM-M315F / DS) smartphone reviewSamsung Galaxy M31 (SM-M315F / DS) smartphone review

The back panel is rounded, the device fits well in the hand, although the smartphone is wide enough. Dimensions – 159.2 x 75.1 x 8,9 mm, weight – 191 grams. This is a male device, which follows from the size, but on the other hand, and girls will be happy, the larger the screen, the better. Someone may disagree with this, but the trend in the market is just that. I remember the time when 4-inch devices appeared and they were called shovels, I involuntarily smile, today such devices can hardly be called large. Here is about the same story, perception lags behind the real state of affairs.

Samsung Galaxy M31 (SM-M315F / DS) smartphone reviewSamsung Galaxy M31 (SM-M315F / DS) smartphone review

Compared to Galaxy M21

The layout of the device is typical – at the bottom there is a speaker, as well as a USB Type C connector, 3.5 mm, a microphone. The second microphone is on the top, noise cancellation works fine. On the right side there is a paired volume key and an on / off button. On the left side there is a slot for two nanoSIM cards, as well as a memory card, it is not combined!

Samsung Galaxy M31 (SM-M315F / DS) smartphone reviewSamsung Galaxy M31 (SM-M315F / DS) smartphone reviewSamsung Galaxy M31 (SM-M315F / DS) smartphone review

The speaker is hidden behind a grill above the screen, the display has an O-shaped cutout. The device is not protected against water and dust, which is normal for this segment.

The build quality is excellent, there are no complaints about it. The fingerprint sensor on the back is easy to find.

Samsung Galaxy M31 (SM-M315F / DS) smartphone review

The reaction time is insignificant, unlocking is fast. Face unlocking is standard, it works perfectly.

Display

The technical characteristics of the screen are as follows: 6.4 inches, 1080×2340 pixels (19.5: 9), SuperAMOLED, 403 ppi, automatic brightness control, AlwaysOn Display, Corning Gorilla Glass 3.

Samsung Galaxy M31 (SM-M315F / DS) smartphone review

Front camera – O-cut, this is a simple version of the screen, but this is unlikely to stop anyone.

Samsung Galaxy M31 (SM-M315F / DS) smartphone review

A feature unavailable to competitors in this price segment is the AlwaysOn Display, which is the ability to see a clock or screensaver on the screen, notification icons and quickly switch to applications.

The screen settings are typical, you can change the color settings.

The screen remains readable in the sun, the brightness is enough for any work. The diagonal of the screen is ideal for watching videos, viewing photos, reading texts. This is a versatile smartphone, and the fact that it has such a good display makes it stand out from all the competition. The presence of AMOLED is a huge plus for this segment.

Battery

The smartphone has a built-in 6000 mAh Li-Ion battery, it supports fast charging, and it comes with a 15W charger. There is no wireless charging, but this is normal for this segment.

Samsung Galaxy M31 (SM-M315F / DS) smartphone review

The officially declared battery performance parameters coincide with what we received in the tests:

  • Video playback time at maximum brightness – up to 29 hours;
  • Audio playback – up to 97 hours;
  • Internet browsing via Wi-Fi – up to 22 hours, LTE – up to 22 hours;
  • Talk time in 4G – up to 44 hours.

In everyday life, this device works for about 2.5-3 days with automatic adjustment of the backlight brightness (the algorithm adjusts to you, and it is not aggressive at all, the brightness is always comfortable). In this case, the operating time of the screen is about 9-9.5 hours.

The full charging time of the battery is approximately 150 minutes. I checked this point many times, on average, the charging time is as follows. Up to 50% charging takes about 65 minutes.

Memory, chipset, performance

Samsung used the Exynos 9611 chipset (10 nm technology), four Cortex A73 cores with a frequency of up to 2.3 GHz, four Cortex A4 cores with a frequency of up to 53 GHz, Mali G1.7 MP72. This is an excellent processor for this price segment, it is an advantageous one in comparison with analogues. The interface is fast and responsive. Look at the synthetic test results.

The basic version for memory in Russia is 6/128 GB, memory cards up to 512 GB, this is enough for most users of such a device.

Communication capabilities

In the Galaxy M31, dual band Wi-Fi, which is already a big plus, is supported by VHT80, which provides good data transfer speeds. Unlike older models, ANT + is not supported. But the set of frequencies for LTE is noticeably less than that of the same A51, and coincides with the A31.

Bluetooth 5.0 version, NFC (Samsung Pay / Google Pay) is present, everything works just fine.

Samsung Galaxy M31 (SM-M315F / DS) smartphone review

From the point of view of navigation, everything is also very good (GPS / A-GPS / GLONASS / Beidou), a cold start on city streets takes 2-3 seconds, the navigation accuracy is excellent, no complaints.

Camera

The camera interface is familiar to other Samsung models, there are no discoveries here. There are Pro mode, AR Emoji and other effects.

Samsung Galaxy M31 (SM-M315F / DS) smartphone reviewSamsung Galaxy M31 (SM-M315F / DS) smartphone review

Front camera 32 MP (f / 2.2), bokeh effect, various additional effects, no autofocus. Look at an example of a picture, everything is familiar here and at the level of other models.

Samsung Galaxy M31 (SM-M315F / DS) smartphone review

The main camera module consists of three lenses.

Samsung Galaxy M31 (SM-M315F / DS) smartphone review

Let’s look at examples of photos and videos, they are incomparable with flagships, but in their price segment everything is not bad, this is a typical quality for models of this level.

Sample video (MP4, 40 MB) >>>

And here is a small comparison of the photo quality with the Galaxy A51.

Software – features

The model is originally based on Android 10 and OneUI 2.0, that is, this is the latest version of the interface, which in the literal sense can be called one of the best both in terms of flexibility of settings and capabilities, and in other points.

A few words about the multimedia capabilities of the device. It has a built-in radio with the ability to record programs. The headphones act as an antenna.

Standard applications are represented by a calculator, file manager, voice recorder and other applications that are necessary for comfortable work out of the box.

Unlike the older models, there are no Bixby scripts here, this is clearly a marketing division into older and younger models. The function is cool, it’s a pity that it was abandoned in the younger models.


Impressions

The device holds onto the network quite well, the radio part is tuned correctly. There are no downsides in this part. At a cost of 18-20 thousand rubles in federal retail, this is an interesting offer for those who are looking for a smartphone with a large battery, good cameras and an excellent screen. Yes, there is no fingerprint sensor built into the screen, but many will consider this a plus, and for some use cases this is good.

With the Galaxy M21, these devices are twin brothers, although the younger model costs about 15-16 thousand rubles. There are few differences – these are other cameras and more memory. Like the M21, there is no support for Samsung Pay, only Google Pay. This should be taken into account when buying a device, as well as the absence of a “Protected folder” with KNOX. There are almost no other differences from the older models.

In this segment, the Galaxy A51 remains the king, it is the best-selling smartphone in Russia. Due to massive supplies and an excess of supply, promotions are often held on it, in which this model can be bought for 15 thousand rubles (4/64 GB version), and the 6/128 GB version costs about 18-19 thousand rubles. This is comparable to the M31, and if the cost is equal, I would be guided by the Galaxy A51 – it has a better radio part, the cameras are higher, in a word, this is a step up. But the battery is much smaller, 4000 mAh versus 6000 mAh in the reviewed device.

Samsung Galaxy M31 (SM-M315F / DS) smartphone review

Is the M31 worth the money? Definitely. Is this an interesting device? Yes. It is suitable for anyone looking for a smartphone with a large battery and a great big screen.

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