Samsung Galaxy J3 (2016): Compromised Budget Phone

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lazysean

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Thanks for the review, though it ultimately answered so few of the questions I have as the comparisons are all apples to oranges. The J3 is currently only available here on Boost and Virgin Mobile, yet every single one of the phones you've compared it to are *not* available on those carriers, and most are in a completely different price bracket as well ($100 - $200 more than the J3).

Because of where I live I am unfortunately stuck on the Sprint network for now so it would have been much more useful to see some direct comparisons to their other offerings. I don't need to know how it compares to one-legged unicorns like the Honor 5x, I need to know if it's worth chucking my 6-month old POS LG Volt for this. You bemoan the "paltry" 16gb rom, outdated Lollipop OS and "bare minimum" 1280x720 display without taking into account that almost all of the other low and mid-range phones being offered by prepaid carriers have 4-8gb, KitKat, and 960x540 displays. On paper this J3 looks like a great upgrade for the price, but this review does very little to help me figure out if it that's true.
 

PhilipMichaels

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Oct 1, 2014
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Fair point.

I would say that even though the Moto E -- available on Boost -- runs an older version of Android and has a less-than-stellar front camera, it's still a better phone than the J3. And less expensive too.

The camera on the J3 makes it very hard for me to recommend. If you're willing to live with the occasional blurry shot, don't run a lot of power-hungry apps, and can live with around eight hours of battery life, it's an OK option at its price point.

I hope that addresses some of your concerns.
 

lazysean

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Mar 4, 2016
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Interesting. On paper the J3 beats the Moto E hands down. 50% more ram, twice the rom storage (and 4x the expandable storage) higher resolution display, larger battery, better performance on every single test you ran except for the video conversion, where the moto e inexplicably finished in less than half the time, besting even much higher end phones like the HTC M9 (surely that must be an error in the Moto E review?). All that and the J3 is still inferior? Must be one hell of a camera.

I've had the J3 about a week now. So far, so good. Easily the best phone I've ever had, though that's not saying a whole lot. Started on a LG Optimus V. Samsung Reverb, Galaxy Grand Prime, and LG Volt followed. Yes, the camera can be slow, or blurry, or have inaccurate colors sometimes. But it's completely in line with what I'm used to from every other phone I've owned. There's a "sports" mode, BTW, that removes the slow frame rate you complained of and the shutter delay. No idea yet what is being sacrificed to achieve that, or why it's not the default mode. The rest of the phone has been solid as well. Fast and smooth so far, and thankfully none of the Volts issues with apps quitting, etc.
 
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