Samsung has quietly launched its sveltest smartphone to date after the Galaxy A8 was announced in China today. At just 5.9mm thick, it bests the Galaxy A5 and Galaxy A3, Samsung’s previously leanest phones, on the thinness front and keeps the design from its older siblings.
The all-metal device, first spotted by Engadget, has decent specs but is more of a mid-ranger than a high-end device that might challenge the iPhone or Samsung’s own flagships. Beyond the 5.7-inch 1080p OLED display, there’s an eight-core Snapdragon 615 processor, 16-megapixel/five-megapixel back and front cameras and 2GB RAM. The 3,050 mAh battery is notable for being larger than that of the Galaxy S6, all the while keeping to a compact form factor and impressively light 151g in weight.
While Samsung launched the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge earlier this year and its flagship phablet — the Galaxy Note 5 — is expected to arrive on the scene soon, mid-range devices like the Galaxy A8 are important for its business, since Xiaomi is eating Samsung’s lunch in China with its $150 Redmi and $300 Mi 4 phones. The aforementioned Galaxy A5 and A3 were also initially focused on China, so — once again — it’s quite clear that Samsung is putting significant focus on the world’s largest smartphone market, where share of shipments dropped by a whopping 50 percent this past year.
It isn’t clear whether the Galaxy A8 will get an overseas launch. The Galaxy A5 and A3 did, so it may well present itself in time, but — either way — the consistent design language of these devices is something that we’re likely to see in other devices targeted at international customers.