Samsung reinvented itself last year and that gave the A-series a chance for a coup. It took the great new design from the S-phones and parred it down to a mid-range price.
The Samsung Galaxy A7 (2016) is essentially an A5 (2016) stretched to 5.5" screen size. This sort of size has turned into somewhat of a sweetspot for a phablet - any bigger and the phone becomes unwieldy, any smaller and you lose the benefit of the big screen .
While the A5 (2016) competed with the company's flagship - the Galaxy S6 - the A7 (2016) is placed somewhat differently - it can't even hope for taking on the Galaxy S6 edge+ or the Note5, so it's instead targeting a market populated by a number of Chinese-made phablets.
The relationship between the old and new Galaxy A5 and A7 is strange. The original A5 left to be desired and the new one is a great upgrade... except it's priced too high. The A7 was pretty solid and so the new A7 (2016) isn't a huge improvement, but it's pricing is on point.
And the new features, while few in number, do a great job of transforming the phablet into a true premium mid-ranger. The Samsung Galaxy A7 (2016) brings a first-rate fingerprint reader and Samsung Pay support.
It also looks to have some impressive photography chops on paper - with a bright f/1.9 aperture and OIS. Not to mention the AMOLED screen with perfectly calibrated colors.
We'll check up on that later, first let's have a look at the new design, which features 2.5D Gorilla Glass 4 on the back, just like on the front.