Regaining its lost market share, M-series has emerged as a winner for Samsung. The company initially started with countering the larger segment of sub-Rs 20,000. But with the Galaxy M51, Samsung has expanded its reach further. Priced at Rs 24,999, the Samsung Galaxy M51 is a feature-packed device with a bright display, multiple cameras and a huge 7,000mAh battery.
Housing a 6.7-inch display and a 7,000mAh battery, the Galaxy M51 isn't the sleekest or lightest smartphone in its category. Although it is 9.5mm thick and weighs 213 grams, the soft finish and curved edges make it rather comfortable to hold. The fingerprint scanner, that is usually at the rear, is bundled with the power button on the right panel. This made it convenient to unlock the phone, access notifications and launch apps when operating with just one hand. The screen is protected by Gorilla Glass 3 (and not Gorilla Glass 5 or 6). Even though it has a plastic body, it is aesthetically pleasing.
Samsung has had some of the best displays on its smartphones and the one on Galaxy M51 is a 1080x2400 (FHD+) Super AMOLED Plus display with a punch hole at the top centre for the selfie camera. With vibrant colours, sharp text and good viewing angles, the screen look stunning. The front is dominated by the display as there are very sleek bezels at the top and bottom. The screen, along with Dolby Atmos for sound (over headphones) and the long-lasting battery, was simply ideal for binging movies and shows over OTT platforms.
The rear quad-camera setup includes a 64MP primary camera, 12MP ultra-wide camera, 5MP macro lens and 5MP depth sensor. Using pixel binning in the default photo mode, images are captured at 16MP resolution. Images had sharp focus and good colour reproduction - both on the device as well as a bigger display. Unlike most of the smartphone cameras with AI mode, this one had scene optimiser but didn't show any major difference in image quality. During daylight, the images captured were impressive and the night mode came handy while capturing images in low-light environment. More camera options, including Pro, panorama, macro, live focus, appeared in the camera settings, which I believe were a little difficult to access. Samsung's equivalent to portrait mode is Live Focus which worked well on humans as well as objects. I was also able to change the background blur level while editing images. However, the images captured using the macro mode were not so impressive.
This mid-range smartphone has a mid-range Snapdragon 730G processor onboard, which has been paired with 8GB RAM but the overall performance was pretty neat. I was a little sceptical about using it as my default phone while testing but the Galaxy M51 was a surprise package. Not only did it handle most of the apps and games with ease, there wasn't even a single instance of lag or device freezing. It also turned out to be my fall-back device for video meetings over Zoom, Google Meet and Microsoft Teams, especially during power-cuts and erratic broadband connectivity. Other than the Google apps, there were a few third-party apps such as DailyHunt, Snapchat, Amazon Shopping, Microsoft Office, LinkedIn, Outlook amongst others. Thankfully, I was able to uninstall the unwanted ones. Of the 128GB internal storage, close to 106 was user-accessible. Overall, the performance lived up to my expectations.
The best thing about the M51 was the battery backup. The 7,000mAh battery lasted me two days easily with heavy usage, including movie binging, camera clicks, gaming, calling, web browsing, video calling and constant access to emails. Charging a 7,000mAh battery can be tedious but the 25W USB Type-C fast charger bundled in the box juices it in less than two hours.
Verdict: Premium design clubbed with performance and amazing battery backup makes Samsung M51 a great device worth considering.