Samsung Galaxy M34 5G review: capable and how!

Review Summary

Expert Rating
7.0/10

Design
★  
7.5
/10
Display
★  
8.0
/10
Software
★  
7.5
/10
Camera
★  
7.5
/10
Performance
★  
7.5
/10
Battery
★  
8.0
/10

Pros

  • Vibrant display
  • Excellent battery life
  • Good performance for everyday use

Cons

  • No charger in the box
  • Lowlight photography could have been better

Samsung’s new Galaxy M34 5G is one of the most affordable smartphones in India offering an AMOLED panel and 120Hz refresh rate. Additionally, the handset boasts a massive 6,000mAh battery that is rated to last for days. The Samsung Galaxy M34 is also future-proof with four major software upgrades and features a 50MP OIS camera for ‘shake-free’ photos and videos. 

Do all these aspects make this Samsung smartphone an obvious choice under Rs 20,000? Let’s find out in this Samsung Galaxy M34 5G review.

Verdict

The Samsung Galaxy M34 5G is a good choice for multimedia consumption, thanks to its crisp and vibrant display and impressive battery life. Additionally, the device’s performance meets regular usage expectations, while its primary camera excels in capturing finer details with respectable colour accuracy even in cloudy conditions.

Design and display

  • The design of the Samsung Galaxy M34 5G mirrors that of the more expensive Galaxy F54 (review) model. The handset has a plastic frame, with curved edges and polycarbonate glass at the back. On the right fascia of the phone, you’ll find the power button, which doubles up as a fingerprint scanner, along with the volume buttons. At the bottom, the handset features a convenient arrangement with a USB Type-C port nestled between a 3.5mm headphone jack and a speaker grille.
  • Apart from this, the Galaxy M34 5G sports three individual camera rings in the top left corner of the back panel. The rings jut out of the frame, but the protrusion is not significant enough to hinder typing on the phone while it rests on a surface. The handset is comfortable to wield, but its 208 grams weight may pose a slight inconvenience while holding the device for an extended duration to stream movies/ TV shows.
  • Talking about the viewing experience, the Samsung Galaxy M34 5G packs a 6.5-inch Infinity-U Super AMOLED display that bears FHD+ resolution and up to 120Hz refresh rate. The display isn’t quite bezel-less, but it has a Corning Gorilla Glass 6 on top, which offers it some level of protection against minor drops/falls. The display exhibits punchy and vibrant colours, with decent viewing angles and sunlight legibility. I had no trouble reading the text on the phone under bright sunlight.
Samsung Galaxy M34 5G
  • Consuming content like TV shows and movies on the smartphone is fun too. The handset holds a Widevine L1 certification, enabling streaming of content in FHD resolution from platforms like Netflix and other streaming services. However, I wish the phone had a stereo speaker output for a better listening experience. The handset currently has a mono bottom-firing speaker with Dolby Atmos, which gets sufficiently loud.
  • In addition, the Galaxy M34 offers support for two refresh rates: 60Hz and 120Hz, which works fine across UI and supported apps. That said, there is no auto or dynamic refresh rate available, which would automatically adjust the refresh rate based on the content displayed on the screen to optimise battery consumption.

Cameras

  • The Samsung Galaxy M34 5G sports triple rear cameras, which consist of a 50MP primary sensor with OIS, an 8MP ultra-wide lens, and a 2MP macro sensor. For selfies and video calling, the handset relies on a 13MP front-facing camera. The cameras come with a bunch of different modes, including Fun mode, which has 16 different built-in filters, and Monster Shot 2.0 which captures up to four videos and four photos in a single shot.
  • Specs and features aside, the primary camera of the handset captures images with excellent detail and colour accuracy, particularly in well-lit areas. The camera samples provided may exhibit a slightly underwhelming dynamic range, but it’s important to note that this could be attributed to the overcast/ rainy conditions in Delhi NCR. Be that as it may, the camera was quick to focus and process images in no time. The 8MP ultra-wide lens offers a 120-degree field-of-view (FoV); however, it tends to distort details noticeably along the edges of the frame. That said, the colours look decent, at least in well-lit environments. The 2MP macro lens, on the other hand, requires stability and a larger sensor size to truly capture impressive close-up shots.
previous arrow
next arrow
previous arrownext arrow
Slider
  • The 13MP selfie shooter captures images with acceptable facial detailing and skin tones. Talking about the portrait mode of the smartphone, it needs improvement in terms of edge detection. The bokeh effect, which can be adjusted manually, looks quite natural. In low light, the cameras’ performance is average. While you can expect some usable shots from the main and selfie cameras at night, details and colours might not look good. The phone has a dedicated night mode; however, it only helps in reducing the graininess in the images.

Performance and software

  • The Samsung Galaxy M34 chipset is the same as the one used by its predecessor, the Galaxy M33. The handset rocks a 5nm octa-core 5G-capable Exynos 1280 SoC under the hood. The chipset handles basic tasks like browsing, going through social media accounts, and checking messages quite comfortably. It can even take care of multi-tasking, with limited apps running in the background. When it comes to gaming, the chipset can handle graphically-demanding games like BGMI, but not as seamlessly as you would expect. There was some noticeable lag while playing BGMI with medium graphics and frame rate for an extended duration.
  • If gaming isn’t your primary focus, the Galaxy M34 5G should serve you well. In benchmarking tests, the Galaxy M34 achieved a score of 4,88,166 points on AnTuTu, while its Geekbench scores were 953 and 2,000 points in the single-core and multi-core tests, respectively. In the CPU Throttle test, the handset performance throttles to 85 percent of its peak performance while running 50 threads for half an hour. The handset is available in a couple of RAM options: 6GB and 8GB, and 128GB user-expandable storage.
  • Software-wise, the Samsung Galaxy M345G runs Android 13-based OneUI 5.1 out of the box. The software experience on the handset remains the same as pretty much every Galaxy smartphone launched this year. It looks very user-friendly and intuitive. There are a few customisation options, along with Samsung Wallet for ease of payment using your debit or credit card and Knox Security for added privacy and protection against data theft.
  • The phone comes with a few third-party pre-installed apps that can be removed after the initial setup, but luckily there are no spammy notifications to worry about. Not to forget, Samsung has promised four years of major software updates and five years of security updates for the device, making it the longest software support timeline offered in its segment.

Battery and charging speeds

  • The Samsung Galaxy M34 5G boasts a remarkable 6,000mAh battery, providing users with extended usage before needing to recharge. While the device is designed to offer up to two days of battery life for regular users, heavy users like myself can expect the handset to last throughout the day, which is still commendable. In my personal experience, I managed to achieve approximately 10 hours of screen-on-time even with frequent navigation and hotspot usage. The PCMark 3.0 battery test rated the smartphone to last up to 13 hours and 8 minutes.
  • The handset supports 25W fast charging, though it’s worth mentioning that you will need to purchase a compatible power adaptor separately. You will not find a charger in the box. All you get in terms of accessories is a Type-C to Type-C charging cableOnce you have the appropriate charger, you can expect a full charge from zero to take approximately two hours. While this charging time might seem slightly longer compared to other smartphones, it’s important to consider the substantial capacity of the Galaxy M34’s battery.

Final verdict

The Samsung Galaxy M34 5G retails in India with a starting price of Rs 16,999, which is quite affordable for a phone that features a lovely AMOLED display with 120Hz refresh rate, along with a long-lasting 6,000mAh battery. There are hardly any other smartphones in this price segment that offer a similar package.

Besides this, the Samsung smartphone’s performance in benchmark tests excels compared to its competitors, including the Redmi Note 12 (review), Infinix Note 30 5G (review), and Realme Narzo 60 (review). The charging speeds may not be on par with others, but the phone comes with extensive software support, ensuring longevity for its users. If these aspects appeal to you, the Samsung Galaxy M34 5G should prove to be a great buy.

Editor’s rating: 4 / 5

Reasons to buy

  • The display exhibits punchy and vibrant colours, with decent viewing angles and sunlight legibility.
  • The battery life of the Galaxy M34 5G can easily last more than a day if regular users.
  • The handset handles basic tasks like browsing, going through social media accounts, and checking messages quite comfortably.

Reasons to not buy

  • The Samsung Galaxy M34 doesn’t come with a charger bundled in the box.
  • The lowlight performance of the cameras is average.

Key Specs

Samsung Galaxy M34
RAM6 GB
ProcessorSamsung Exynos 1280
Rear Camera50 MP + 8 MP + 2 MP
Front Camera13 MP
Battery6000 mAh
Display6.5 inches (16.51 cm)
See Full Specs
Samsung Galaxy M34 Price
View All
Rs. 12,999.00
Go To Store