Galaxy S23 Intro
The Samsung Galaxy S23 is well on its way — if it follows in the footsteps of the S22, we can expect it within 4 months. And you know how it is — a hot device gets information leaked about it left and right, with details about the camera, hardware, and design becoming more and more clear in the months prior to release.
What’s new about the device
- Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 with 10% to 20% improved performance
- New design, a la S22 Ultra
- Some camera improvements
- Slightly increased battery
Table of Contents:
Galaxy S23 Unboxing
The current standard is to get a thin box with just the phone and data cable inside. Some thin booklets and a SIM ejector tool, too, of course. We expect to see the same with the Galaxy S23 in February. No earphones, no charger.
Galaxy S23 Specs
The next Samsung flagship
According to leaks, reports, and rumors, here is what we have so far:
The Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 will probably be on all Galaxy S23 models — recent leaks say there will be no Exynos version, which is good. We are not going to get into a Snapdragon vs Exynos debate here, but the two processors do offer slightly different performance and — more importantly — different camera post-processing. So, having the same model available to everyone will avoid a ton of confusion, which we have gotten used to living with.
Galaxy S23 Models
We are looking at the base Galaxy S23 here, but the family will include three devices — Galaxy S23, Galaxy S23+, and Galaxy S23 Ultra, with the last one being the absolute beast… as is customary.
Typically, the non-Plus is the smallest member of the series. With a compact shape and a lowest cost, you could argue that the Galaxy S23 is the true flagship, as it is expected to be the most mainstream-friendly phone.
Galaxy S23 Design & Colors
Not as many colors on launch, maybe exclusive ones at Samsung
We do expect a fresh new redesign — the S23 series will look a lot more uniform. Instead of the base Galaxy S23 and the S23+ having one shape, with the Ultra an entirely different one.
Of course, we don’t expect a curved screen on the cheapest Galaxy S — that’s another win for many who were getting a bit tired by waterfall displays.
Galaxy S23 Display
Samsung is on top of its AMOLED game. Bright, vivid, sharp, and beautiful screens that the company has been perfecting over the last decade. We absolutely expect the Galaxy S23 to have the same high-quality screen that can be tuned to either have saturated and aggressive colors, or tame realistic ones.
Reports say a 6.1-inch diagonal, probably with an aspect ratio of around 19.5:9. The reported resolution is 1080 x 2340, which would give us a PPI ratio of 422. That’s pretty sharp — not crazy sharp, but certainly more than “good enough”. You won’t be making out individual pixels on that screen and if you do — you might be a superhero.
Samsung has had Always On for some 6 years now, but we are curious to see if the Galaxy S23 will upgrade the feature to match the new iPhone 14 Pro’s all-lit Always On screen.
And, of course, we expect nothing less than an ultrasonic fingerprint sensor hidden under the display — these were shaky in the Galaxy S10 days but have evolved to be quite quick and reliable.
Galaxy S22 Camera
Your upgrade is in another castle
All leaks and reports point to one painful thing — not much new about the Galaxy S22 camera.
Now, sure, we may get some improvements on the software side and the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2’s handling of post-processing. But aside from that, we hear the same 50 MP main camera, 12 MP ultra-wide, 10 MP telephoto combo.
Galaxy S23 Performance & Benchmarks
Second generation of ultimate power
We don’t know much about real-world performance yet, but a leaked benchmark score gives us hope that the Gen 2 may deliver a nice 10%-20% boost in performance over Gen 1.
Supposed S23 Ultra benchmark score
Galaxy S23 OS / Android version
The latest Android build out there is Android 13 and that’s what we expect the Galaxy S23 to launch with. But you know the deal — Samsung likes to do its own stuff, so its Android phones have the elaborate One UI reskin — the latest one being One UI 5.
Now, by the time the Galaxy S23 launches, that may evolve to One UI 5.5 or something of the sort, but we expect the baseline of features to remain as we know them — easy split screen shortcuts, edge panels that you can pull in from the side for multi-tasking, and complete integration with Samsung’s ecosystem with SmartThings Hub.
At least that’s how we interpret Samsung’s words, let’s break it down just to be sure:
- Galaxy S23 launches with Android 13 in early 2023
- Update 1 – Android 14 in late 2023
- Update 2 – Android 15 in late 2024
- Update 3 – Android 16 in late 2025
- Update 4 – Android 17 in late 2026
- Galaxy S23 reaches end of 4-year promise in early 2027
- Galaxy S23 stops getting security updates in early 2028
Galaxy S23 Battery
A small bump in capacity
OK, so as per rumors, we will get a 200 mAh increase in battery capacity — up to 3,900 mAh. There are two ways this could go — the extra 200 mAh may be there to balance out the demands of a more powerful Snapdragon 8 Gen 2, no difference in the end. Or, it could work in tandem with power efficiency in the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 and deliver better battery life.
Galaxy S23 Audio Quality and Haptics
Ever since Samsung acquired AKG it has slowly and surely improved the sound of its mobile devices. The Galaxy S23 will surely have a stereo setup with bottom driver and amped earpiece — like we are used to. And we expect it to sound decent, but would love to have it blow us away.
Still, they are working with the restricted size of a compact smartphone, so chances are slim.
The haptics on the flagship Galaxy series, however, are excellent and we expect nothing less from the Galaxy S23.
Galaxy S23 Competitors
Obviously, the iPhone 14 will be a pulling force that will threaten the Galaxy S23’s success. However, it does have shortcomings — Apple will only give you a 60 Hz screen and two cameras with the base iPhone 14.
The Galaxy S23 will come out swinging with a 120 Hz screen and a full trio of cameras, there to please fans of portraits and zooming.
But what about on the Android side? Well, Google’s latest Pixel 7 duo is very tempting. The base Pixel 7 costs $600 and is an absolute bargain. And even the Pixel 7 Pro will only be slightly more expensive than the Galaxy S23 — an extra $100 and you get a bigger screen and the premium Google Assistant experience.
But Samsung has been in the game for a while now and has built a robust ecosystem around its phones. DeX, SmartThings, the Galaxy Watches and Galaxy Buds, plus the Galaxy SmartTags — you’ve got plenty of reasons to go for a Samsung and keep it in the heart of your IoT life.
Galaxy S23 Summary and final verdict
It seems that there will be plenty of good reasons to upgrade to a Galaxy S23 if you are coming from an older model — like an S20. If you have more recent models, it may seem like the Galaxy S23 doesn’t bring a ton of upgrades, and yeah — that’s about right.
But, in general, we expect the Galaxy S23 to be yet another workhorse with a fairly compact shape, good cameras, and reliable performance.