Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) review: A-lister

A-lister

GSMArena team, 19 February, 2016.

User interface

The Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) runs a TouchWiz-skinned Android 5.1.1 Lollipop. The company just updated the S6 flagship to 6.0 Marshmallow, but the A9 will have to wait for this update.

Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) review

The fingerprint reader used on the A9 (and other 2016 A-series phones) is the same as the one on the Galaxy S6 and Note5. It recognizes a finger in under a second. All it takes to unlock the phone is to press the Home key and leave your finger for a moment longer while the fingerprint reader does its thing.

The lockscreen - Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) review fingerprint protection - Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) review fingerprint protection - Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) review
The lockscreen • fingerprint protection

Size aside, the homescreen is perfectly identical to the TouchWiz home of other Samsung phones. Even the number of columns is the same - 5 icons on a row, same as the A7.

Homescreen - Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) review Briefing - Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) review App drawer - Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) review Homescreen settings - Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) review
Homescreen • Briefing • App drawer • Homescreen settings

The Notification area is pretty busy by default. It starts with a scrollable line of quick toggles on top, then a brightness slider, then the S Finder and Quick connect buttons. You can hide them from the Edit option, which also lets you re-arrange the quick toggles.

Notification area - Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) review Modifying the notification area - Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) review
Notification area • Modifying the notification area

The Galaxy A9 (2016) user interface is fully themeable. We only got three themes pre-installed, but the Theme store has many more to download.

Themes - Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) review Themes - Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) review Themes - Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) review Themes - Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) review
Themes

Split-screen multitasking is supported on the A9 and the 6" screen was born to do it. Even at half a screen, apps get plenty of room (Material design likes a lot of padding though). As always, only supported apps can work in split-screen, but Samsung's implementation is the most widely supported. Floating app windows are not available, though.

App switcher - Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) review Launching split-screen mode - Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) review Split-screen mode - Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) review
App switcher • Launching split-screen mode • Split-screen mode

The Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016) comes with a fairly average amount of pre-loaded apps, so we can't explain where all the storage went. The phone starts with 32GB, but a whole quarter of that (7.5GB) is left to the system. That's close to double what the 16GB A5 and A7 lost.

Reader comments

  • Woodpops

It seems to use up its battery power very quickly or am I doing something wrong

  • hunaini

Why it doesnt have notification light 😭😭😭

  • Anonymous

Plz know This phon battery life?