Tuesday, December 12, 2023

REVIEW | Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra

The Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra is a flagship-level smartphone that boasts of an elegant design, sharing close resemblance with its predecessor.

Versus the previous generation, the Galaxy S23 series has achieved higher pre-order results, with 60% opting for the Galaxy S23 Ultra model.

According to Samsung, the phone’s buttons, internal modules, and ports are made with recycled materials, making it the brand’s most sustainable smartphone yet.

The 6.8-inch AMOLED display is highlighted for its ability to beat outdoor sunlight, while the software features are primed for performance and battery life optimization. The custom Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chip, meanwhile, is designed to introduce a whole new level of processing power for users.

“The great momentum we’re witnessing speaks to customers’ excitement about products that push the envelope and give them the freedom to express themselves creatively. This year’s pre-order numbers echo our customers’ strong trust in our brand and demonstrate how our commitment to ground-breaking innovation and sustainability continues to resonate with consumers,” said TM Roh, president and head of Mobile eXperience Business at Samsung Electronics.

The Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra has a boxy appearance and a form factor that leans towards the heavy side, a perfect representation of the amalgamation between a Galaxy Note and a Galaxy Ultra.

It has both subtle and noticeable design changes compared to the previous model, with the most significant change as the further flattening of the display, which has been a trend for Samsung in recent years.

The curvature of the screen has been reduced by 30%, making it flatter than before. This is a departure from Samsung’s previous curved edge design and is more in line with the flat glass on the S22. The changes are not dramatic, but they are visible, and the S23 Ultra still retains its unique Samsung aesthetic.

The fingerprint reader is fast and reliable since Samsung decided to go with an ultrasonic sensor instead of an optical one. There are some users who have reported less than stellar experiences with even the latest Samsung ultrasonic sensor implementations, but our experience with the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra has been positive so far.

The back panel of the phone has been redesigned to match the front’s shape, maintaining symmetry, and this has resulted in almost flat sides.

The device also boasts an Armor Aluminum frame, which is a specific alloy that is tougher than regular aluminum. The front and rear panels are made of Corning’s latest Gorilla Glass Victus 2, which is even better than the Victus+ of the previous year, especially in the event of a drop on concrete.

The Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra has an IP68 rating for dust and water resistance, but it doesn’t exceed the standard requirement of being submerged 1.5m deep for 30 minutes, unlike Apple’s iPhones which can withstand being submerged at 6m deep for the same amount of time.

The new camera rings on the phone are now more pronounced than before, and the overall restyling is more significant for the S23 and S23+ models, as they have been updated to match the Ultra’s design, unlike last year’s trio.

The S Pen on the latest Samsung phone is the same as the one on the previous model and the Note20 Ultra with 4096 levels of pressure sensitivity and 2.8ms latency, making it precise and responsive for drawing.

The S Pen also has a rechargeable battery that charges when placed inside the phone, as well as Air Actions functionality, allowing it to be used as a remote control.

The Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra is powered by a custom Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chip that minimizes load times and power use. With 12GB of RAM and 256GB of internal storage — expandable up to 1TB with a microSD card, Samsung delivers top-notch performance with this premium offering, as evident with its capability of running multiple apps simultaneously without any noticeable lag or slowdown.

The 5000mAh battery is able to deliver up to roughly 26 hours of video playback — supporting fast charging, wireless charging, and reverse wireless charging. The phone’s fast charging technology allows it to charge from 0 to 100% in just 60 minutes, and charges wirelessly at 15W capacity.

The Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra runs on Android 13 with One UI 4.5 and has software features that include App Pair, which allows users to open two apps at once in split-screen mode, and Edge Panels, which provides access to the most-used apps and favorite contacts quickly.


The Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra is one of the best Android smartphones currently in the market, and despite its premium price tag, this flagship powerhouse has more than earned the right to be ranked at the top.

Across specification categories, the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra is able to deliver an excellent performance for its users – be it cameras, battery, display, processing power, and user interface. The only downside, however, is that it fails to bring more value to customers who already own the older Galaxy S22 Ultra model.


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