We tried the Samsung Galaxy S23 in preview: 4 things to keep in mind

Just announced, already tried. Like last year with its Galaxy S22, Samsung gave us a chance to take control of its Galaxy S23 even before the official announcement. Like it or not, we will not eliminate it.

Like Apple with the iPhone 14, Samsung played the continuity card with gentle technical developments. On the other hand, like Apple, price changes are much easier.

After spending a few hours with the Galaxy S23, S23+ and S23 Ultra, we identify 4 things to remember.

Our Galaxy S23 handling video

Design changes (slight)

For this new vintage, Samsung wanted to bring aesthetic homogeneity to the range. No more rectangular photo blocks from S22/S22+, all models launched this year the photo sensor is directly integrated into the chassis. An interesting choice that pulls the Galaxy S23 in a more minimalist direction, which doesn’t make us unhappy. Obviously, tastes and colors are not discussed, everyone will be more or less sensitive to these changes.

In his search for unity, Samsung has equipped the Galaxy S23 Ultra with a flatter screen. Always quick to adapt to the demands of its customers, the manufacturer has responded to those who criticize the S22 Ultra’s too curved format. The new model, impressive nonetheless, is therefore easier to handle but doesn’t have the extra flat panel like the S23 and S23+.

Samsung has also cleaned up its color choices which, in past years, can quickly become a headache. Therefore, the Galaxy S23 is all available in four colors: black, beige, green and lavender. Two colors exclusive to the official Samsung store are also available: Graphite and Lime (our favorite, good luck). The Galaxy S23 Ultra is also available in sky blue and red exclusively.

Finally, all models IP68 certified and protected by Corning Victus 2 Gorilla Glass.

Since the format hasn’t changed much, Galaxy S22 users won’t be out of place. That’s good, they are not Samsung’s main target, which is more aimed at users of the Galaxy S20 or earlier models, which is the effect wow insured (according to Samsung).

As elegant as ever, the Galaxy S23 shines with its quality finish, sharp lines and sleek silhouette. The Galayx S23 Ultra will again and again appeal to fans of giant formats (like the iPhone 14 Pro Max or Pixel 7 Pro). The Galaxy S23 is one of the newest smartphones that is compact enough for one-handed use. according to the US, the Galaxy S23+ format remains the best compromise between a good grip and a comfortable look.

Galaxy S23+ 8/256 GB at the best price
Base price: €1,219

Screen is still good

Display actually makes a big contribution to the design of the Galaxy S23. All models included Dynamic AMOLED 2X panel with 120 Hz refresh rate. Screens range from 1-120Hz on the S23 Ultra and 49-120Hz on the other two models. Ultra is also distinguished by the definition of QHD+ when the S23 and S23+ have to be “satisfied” with Full HD+.

In short, there are no changes compared to the previous generation, the diagonals are also absolutely identical. The only interesting novelty is based on screen brightness is pushed to 1,750 nits in theoretical maximum value.

Hence Samsung tweaked the recipe very slightly and we don’t blame it. The Galaxy S22s already shines with its superior looks. The Galaxy S23 seems to do the same. A more in-depth test will give us confirmation (or not).

Qualcomm’s return

samsung galaxy s23 cream

© Lemon squeezer

The main technical advancements of the Galaxy S23 are hidden under the hood. Since the Galaxy S6, Samsung has equipped its European model Galaxy S with the Exynos processor, its internal chip. A strategic choice that turned out to be (in our opinion) profitable but inconclusive, Exynos chips never quite matched Qualcomm (both in terms of performance and autonomy).

This year, Samsung made the decision to partner again with the American company. The official explanation is clear: Exynos chips require more development time to meet the needs of high-end smartphone users. Hence, giving Samsung a few years to review the copies and choosing to trust Qualcomm to launch its new flagships.

Therefore, the Galaxy S23 all have the latest Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chip presented in Hawaii in December 2022. Samsung and Qualcomm have been working hand-in-hand to best optimize this new platform to meet Samsung’s requirements, both in terms of performance and autonomy and in terms of photography.

It’s impossible within two hours of treatment to tell whether this association has proven to be conclusive. In theory, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chip promises to exceed all expectations. Wait and see.

To keep up with this chip, Samsung packed 8GB of LPDDR5 RAM into the Galaxy S23, S23+ and 256GB Galaxy S23 Ultra. The Ultra model with 512GB and 1TB of storage has 12GB of LPDDR5 RAM. Finally, all models are compatible with 5G and WiFi 6E.

New 200 Mpxl photo sensor

There’s no new Galaxy S without photo enhancements. This year, Samsung hasn’t revolutionized the S23 and S23+ since both models have exactly the same optics as the S22 and S22+. The only difference: the selfie camera (common to all models including the Galaxy S23 Ultra) is based on a 12 Mpxl sensor with DualPixel autofocus.

Galaxy S23 Ultra unveiled new 200 Mpxl sensor made by Samsung. Combined with the same optics as the previous generation (3x telephoto lens, 10x telephoto lens and ultra wide angle lens), this promises to be more detailed photos than ever. Samsung insists on improving the quality of night photos, especially portraits. The first indoor test with good enough light did not allow us to confirm or deny that Samsung was telling the truth. As always, photographic quality will be analyzed during more thorough testing.

Still, Samsung’s promises are compelling. Manufacturers make feet to photographers with export photos in RAW in 50 Mpxl (thanks to pixel merging) or 200 Mpxl. Videographers are not left out with the possibility of filming up to 8K at 30 fps or 4K at 60 fps with the new, bigger stabilizer. Everything is of course brushed with artificial intelligence to overcome the technical limitations of miniature optics.

Besides that, the algorithm will also improve the quality of Stories, Reels and other TikToks. Samsung says it has worked closely with the main company behind the social network to minimize compression of images generated directly from the app.

Galaxy S23 Ultra 8/256 GB at the best price
Base price: €1,419

Prices increased

Samsung galaxy s23 photo series

© Lemon squeezer

Does all of this sound interesting to you? Prepare your portfolio. Like Apple, Samsung raised the price of its Galaxy S23. To get the pills out (or create a problem), manufacturers also increase storage capacity.

Therefore, The Galaxy S23 is available from 959 euros in the 128 GB version i.e. 100 euros more than the Galaxy S22 at release. The 256GB version is priced at 1,019 euros, or 110 euros more than the previous generation. The Galaxy S23+ starts with the 256 GB version and costs 1,219 euros, or 110 euros more than last year. It is also available in a 512 GB version (which was not there before) for 1339 euros.

Finally, the Galaxy S23 Ultra starts at 1,419 euros in the 256 GB version versus 1,359 euros for the Galaxy S22 Ultra at release. A raise of only 60 euros? Think again. Samsung has only included 8GB of RAM in this model compared to last year’s 12GB. The Galaxy S23 Ultra is also offered in 12/512 GB and 12 GB/1 TB versions priced at 1,599 euros and 1,839 euros respectively, that is, an increase of 140 euros and 180 euros!

Average, Hence, Samsung increased its price by 10% across the range. And it’s not the introductory offer to double the storage at the same price that will come as a comfort to consumers whose finances have been badly damaged by inflation.

Galaxy S23 8/128 GB at the best price
Base price: €959

As you will understand, the Galaxy S23 is a smooth evolution from the previous generation. If you have a Galaxy S22, we don’t recommend switching to a newer model unless you really want to.

Samsung admits it itself: The Galaxy S23 series will make an impact wow on Galaxy S20 users or earlier models. For others, the small changes enhance the overall but not significant enough to get the feeling of getting value for money. After all, this is the conclusion we drew after the first grip. Our trials may make us change our minds.

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