Samsung A Series Gets an Unglamourous but Important Update

Samsung has unveiled its latest A Series smartphones in Europe: the Galaxy A33 and Galaxy A53. It was one of the more low-key events of the year so far, with much less hype and fanfare than the recent launches of flagship smartphone series like the OPPO Find X5, the HONOR Magic4, the realme GT2, and indeed Samsung’s own Galaxy S22.

However, the importance of Samsung’s new mid-range devices should not be underestimated, as they will likely be amongst the best-selling smartphones in Europe this year.

Europe’s smartphone workhorse

The A Series is vital to Samsung’s leadership in Europe. Targeted at people who want flagship-like features but for a non-flagship price, the A Series finds a delicate balance between specs and cost and has seen great success in Europe since its inception in 2014. In 2021, A Series devices accounted for 59% of Samsung’s smartphone sales in Europe, more than double that of its flagship S Series. Spain is an especially important market for the A Series in Europe, where it accounted for 70% of Samsung’s smartphone sales in 2021, and almost a quarter of total sales.

The A Series dominates Samsung’s European smartphone sales

Counterpoint Research: The Samsung A Series dominates Samsung’s European smartphone sales
Source: Counterpoint Research Market Pulse Q4 2021

The Samsung Galaxy A12 was the best-selling Android smartphone in Europe in 2021, accounting for 5% of the region’s total Android sales (it was fifth overall when the iPhone 12 and 13 were taken into account). Further, A Series devices accounted for six of the top ten smartphones under $500 (wholesale) in 2021.

Six A Series smartphones in the sub-$500 top ten

6 Samsung A Series smartphones in the sub-$500 top ten
Source: Counterpoint Research Market Pulse Q4 2021

The Samsung A Series has also been key in driving 5G down the price tiers: The Galaxy A32 5G and the Galaxy A52s 5G were the two best-selling sub-$500 5G smartphones in Europe in 2021, together accounting for 14% of total 5G sales in this segment. And it is these two devices that Samsung has just updated.

Similar price, mostly boosted specs

Let’s start with the Galaxy A53. Priced at £399 (€470/$525), the A53 will be exactly the same price as the A52 was at launch last year, and the specs are vaguely similar too. The 6.5-inch screen and quad-camera setup are pretty much the same, as is the IP67 water- and dust-resistance rating. The A53, however, is powered by the Exynos 1280 chipset (versus the A53’s Snapdragon 750G), and Samsung says this will deliver a lot of AI features, especially with regards to the camera. There is also a bigger 5000 mAh battery, although Samsung is sticking with its, now slightly old fashioned, 25W charging. Samsung says many of these specs were found in flagship devices from two years ago, so the A53 packs a lot of bang for its buck.

The Galaxy A33 shares many of the same features as the A53, including the same chipset, and as such is a significant upgrade over last year’s A32 5G. The only difference between the A33 and the A53 is a different camera setup and a slightly smaller screen. However, given that, at £329 (€389/$430), the A33 is more expensive than its predecessor (£250/€299/$329 at launch), the A33 is arguably less of a bargain than the A53 which doesn’t cost that much more.

A53 versus iPhone SE…fight!

Overall, these devices look to be very good mid-range smartphones at very competitive prices and are therefore likely to be among the best-selling devices in Europe in 2022. In addition, the price places the Galaxy A53 in direct competition with the new iPhone SE. On paper, the A53 looks miles ahead, with a 120Hz OLED display (double that of the LCD screen on the iPhone SE), four cameras (three more than the iPhone SE), Night Mode (for some reason missing from the iPhone SE), and a much more modern feel when compared to the iPhone SE that feels very dated. Yes, the new iPhone SE contains a very powerful A15 processor, but if Apple was hoping to steal mid-range users away from Android with its latest offering, then Samsung may have given it more than it can chew.

Jan is an Associate Director with Counterpoint Research, based in London, and leads the company’s research in Europe. He is a seasoned analyst with over 13 years’ experience in the TMT sector, most recently with GSMA Intelligence where he was responsible for key research deliverables and led a team of analysts producing highly impactful regional insights. Before that, Jan held strategy and analyst positions at Vodafone and Qualcomm, and started his career with research firm TNS (now Kantar).

Term of Use and Privacy Policy

Counterpoint Technology Market Research Limited


In order to access Counterpoint Technology Market Research Limited (Company or We hereafter) Web sites, you may be asked to complete a registration form. You are required to provide contact information which is used to enhance the user experience and determine whether you are a paid subscriber or not.
Personal Information When you register on we ask you for personal information. We use this information to provide you with the best advice and highest-quality service as well as with offers that we think are relevant to you. We may also contact you regarding a Web site problem or other customer service-related issues. We do not sell, share or rent personal information about you collected on Company Web sites.

How to unsubscribe and Termination

You may request to terminate your account or unsubscribe to any email subscriptions or mailing lists at any time. In accessing and using this Website, User agrees to comply with all applicable laws and agrees not to take any action that would compromise the security or viability of this Website. The Company may terminate User’s access to this Website at any time for any reason. The terms hereunder regarding Accuracy of Information and Third Party Rights shall survive termination.

Website Content and Copyright

This Website is the property of Counterpoint and is protected by international copyright law and conventions. We grant users the right to access and use the Website, so long as such use is for internal information purposes, and User does not alter, copy, disseminate, redistribute or republish any content or feature of this Website. User acknowledges that access to and use of this Website is subject to these TERMS OF USE and any expanded access or use must be approved in writing by the Company.
– Passwords are for user’s individual use
– Passwords may not be shared with others
– Users may not store documents in shared folders.
– Users may not redistribute documents to non-users unless otherwise stated in their contract terms.

Changes or Updates to the Website

The Company reserves the right to change, update or discontinue any aspect of this Website at any time without notice. Your continued use of the Website after any such change constitutes your agreement to these TERMS OF USE, as modified.
Accuracy of Information: While the information contained on this Website has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable, We disclaims all warranties as to the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of such information. User assumes sole responsibility for the use it makes of this Website to achieve his/her intended results.

Third Party Links: This Website may contain links to other third party websites, which are provided as additional resources for the convenience of Users. We do not endorse, sponsor or accept any responsibility for these third party websites, User agrees to direct any concerns relating to these third party websites to the relevant website administrator.

Cookies and Tracking

We may monitor how you use our Web sites. It is used solely for purposes of enabling us to provide you with a personalized Web site experience.
This data may also be used in the aggregate, to identify appropriate product offerings and subscription plans.
Cookies may be set in order to identify you and determine your access privileges. Cookies are simply identifiers. You have the ability to delete cookie files from your hard disk drive.