Perhaps Samsung’s most contentious upgrade to date is the Galaxy S24 Ultra. For example, the phone’s design won’t be dramatically changed, and the most obvious enhancement to the camera may not be an upgrade at all, so it’s reasonable to assume that hardware adjustments are small.
The software is where this year’s premium Samsung device has seen the biggest advances, as the phone maker has concentrated on AI-powered features. Will the Galaxy S24 Ultra’s enhanced features be sufficient to attract users to buy the device?
Only time will tell if the enhanced features of the Galaxy S24 Ultra will be enough to entice users into purchasing the device. With a focus on AI-powered features, Samsung is banking on the appeal of advanced software to capture consumer interest. However, the success of the smartphone will ultimately depend on how well these features are received and utilized by users in their day-to-day lives.
Here are some answers about the Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra
We now have a better idea of the new device’s strengths and shortcomings after spending hands-on time with the Galaxy S24 Ultra as we prepare for our final assessment. Here are the reasons why you should get the new Galaxy S24 Ultra and why you should pass on this model, since preorders have already started before the phone goes on sale on January 31.
Reasons to buy the Galaxy S24 Ultra
Robust AI capabilities
The biggest apparent enhancement to the Galaxy S range this year is an irrefutable reality. Samsung has put a tremendous effort into AI-powered features, all of which are present on the Galaxy S24 Ultra. And the finest thing about the Galaxy AI capabilities is that they’re actually useful and not merely parlor tricks to delight you and your buddies.
These AI-powered features include intelligent voice recognition, which allows for hands-free operation and seamless interaction with the phone.
Additionally, the Galaxy S24 Ultra’s AI camera system takes stunning photos by automatically adjusting settings based on the scene and subject, ensuring every shot is picture-perfect. With such practical AI capabilities, Samsung has truly raised the bar for smartphone technology and set a new standard for user-friendly innovation.
The Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra is predicted to be a big leap forward for Samsung, centered on generative AI technologies that can accomplish everything from summarizing emails and papers to upscaling images and auto-tracking subjects in films. We’re tracking all the main Galaxy S24 Ultra leaks ahead of Samsung Unpacked, scheduled for January.
From a new titanium design and 144Hz display to Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 performance, here’s all the biggest Samsung S24 Ultra rumors so far. Other rumors surrounding the Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra include an impressive camera system with advanced zoom capabilities and improved low-light performance.
Additionally, the smartphone is expected to come with a larger battery capacity and faster charging speeds, allowing users to stay connected for longer periods. With the anticipation building up, Samsung fans are eagerly waiting for the official unveiling of the Galaxy S24 Ultra to see if these rumors will become a reality.
We haven’t even explored the role AI plays in photo editing.
A stylish function will turn any video you’ve captured on the Galaxy S24 Ultra into a slow-motion one, and AI may advise several alterations and fixes to your picture. Most users are expected to gravitate toward Samsung’s generative AI editing tool, in which you can choose elements and move them, resize them, or eliminate them altogether from the shot.
This innovative feature allows users to have complete creative control over their videos and pictures, giving them the ability to customize and enhance their content.
Whether it’s removing unwanted objects or adjusting the size and placement of elements, Samsung’s generative AI editing tool empowers users to truly personalize their visuals. With this advanced technology at their fingertips, users can easily transform their captured moments into stunning, customized masterpieces.
Maybe you’ve never had much use for the Bixby smart assistant on your Galaxy S flagship. But you’re going to want to check out the Galaxy AI capabilities as soon as you get your hands on the S24 Ultra.
Brighter, flatter display
If we had a concern with past Ultra models, it was the curved screen, which not only made the phone difficult to grasp but also may have made engaging with items near the screen’s edge more complicated than it needed to be. Thank heavens, Samsung has granted us a flatter display with the Galaxy S24 Ultra without sacrificing any space on the 6.8-inch LCD.
The Galaxy S24 Ultra isn’t just easier to grasp and use owing to Samsung’s screen enhancements; it’s brighter, too. The Ultra now boasts a display with a maximum brightness of 2,600 nits, up from 1,750 nits on the Galaxy S23 Ultra.
The outcome is an amazingly vivid display that’s easy to observe regardless of the lighting circumstances around you. You’re not going to have to squint to pick up details on the Galaxy S24 Ultra.
With its impressive increase in maximum brightness, the Galaxy S24 Ultra ensures that every image and video on its display pops with stunning clarity and lifelike colors.
Whether you’re using your phone indoors or outdoors, the screen remains highly visible and doesn’t lose its vibrancy even in direct sunlight. Say goodbye to straining your eyes or struggling to see content on your phone, as the Galaxy S24 Ultra guarantees a truly immersive visual experience.
The greatest Android chipset
The system-on-chip powers your phone depending on where you are in the world, whether you pick the Galaxy S24 or Galaxy S24 Plus. There’s no such ambiguity for Galaxy S24 Ultra consumers, as every edition of Samsung’s flagship phone features the Snapdragon 8 Gen 3.
That’s a major triumph for the Galaxy S24 Ultra. We’re in the process of conducting testing on the new phone, but Qualcomm’s expected increased improvements and leaked benchmarks signal that this chipset will be the best-performing Android silicon of the year. And it may just make the A-series CPUs powering Apple’s upcoming iPhones sweat a little, especially when it comes to graphics.
With Qualcomm’s advancements in performance and leaked benchmarks, the Galaxy S24 Ultra is poised to outshine its Android competitors.
The chipset’s expected superiority in graphics may even give Apple’s upcoming iPhones a run for their money. As technology continues to evolve, the battle for the best-performing smartphone becomes even more exciting, leaving consumers eagerly anticipating the release of these powerful devices.
The Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 offers more than merely performance advantages.
It also manages power more efficiently—we’ll talk about that in just a minute—and the neural processing unit has undergone some improvements, too, undoubtedly assisting with the Galaxy AI capabilities we’ve spoken about.These advancements have allowed the Galaxy AI to perform tasks more quickly and accurately than ever before.
Additionally, the improved power management ensures longer battery life, making the device even more convenient for users on the go. With the enhanced neural processing unit, the Galaxy AI can analyze and understand data at a faster pace, enabling it to provide more personalized and intelligent recommendations to users.
Amazing battery life
We’ve already collected some early battery test results from the Galaxy S24 Ultra. Let’s just say you’re not going to have to go hunting for an outlet to charge your phone too often during the day.
Specifically, the Galaxy S24 Ultra lasted 16 hours and 45 minutes on our test, in which we had phones access the web over cellular until they ran out of energy. Right now, that’s third on our best phone battery life list of devices we’ve tested over the last 18 months, and the only two handsets ahead of it are gaming phones, especially those engineered to last a long time on a charge.
The Galaxy S24 Ultra’s impressive battery life is a testament to its efficient power management system. With this level of endurance, users can confidently rely on the device throughout the day without worrying about running out of battery.
While gaming phones may currently dominate the top spots, the Galaxy S24 Ultra’s performance undoubtedly positions it as a formidable contender in the smartphone market.
The Galaxy S24 Ultra recorded its excellent battery test result with its variable refresh rate enabled, which makes its extended durability even more amazing.
The S24 Ultra can scale up to 120 Hz when there’s a lot of on-screen action, yet higher refresh rates like that have been known to deplete a phone’s battery. That doesn’t appear to be an issue with the Galaxy S24 Ultra, and its brighter display doesn’t seem to be impacting battery life either.
Brighter main camera
Samsung hasn’t made too many alterations from last year’s camera configuration for the Galaxy S24 Ultra, with the greatest tweak being a new 50MP telephoto lens. (Believe me, we’ll be getting to that in a minute.) But one of the upgrades that you will notice on the Galaxy S24 Ultra involves the pixel size on the 200MP main camera.
They’re 60% larger than before, according to Samsung, and that’s expected to translate into brighter images.
The larger pixel size on the 200MP main camera of the Galaxy S24 Ultra is a significant improvement that will greatly enhance the quality of images taken with the device. With 60% larger pixels, users can expect brighter and more detailed photos even in low-light conditions.
This upgrade demonstrates Samsung’s commitment to delivering exceptional camera performance in their flagship smartphones.
Bigger pixels capture more light, and you can see the effect in the following image illustrating a New York City fountain. The differences between the Galaxy S24 Ultra and Galaxy S23 Ultra photographs are slight, but they’re obvious: the buildings in the S24 Ultra image have a brighter gloss to them, and the reflections on the lake are more evident.
I find the blue text in the background richer and more detailed in the Galaxy S24 Ultra image as well. Throw in a substantially darker image taken by the Pixel 8 Pro, and the contrasts couldn’t be more stark.
The Galaxy S23 Ultra was the best photography phone of all last year.
We’ve got more camera testing to go, but the Galaxy S24 Ultra seems like a reasonable substitute.
A more durable phone
Like Apple with last year’s iPhone 15 Pro models, Samsung employed titanium for the frame of the Galaxy S24 Ultra. Apple may have obtained them earlier, but it will hardly matter to the Galaxy S24 Ultra, which will experience a smartphone fashioned out of a more sturdy material than the aluminum chassis Samsung previously deployed.
This new choice of titanium for the Galaxy S24 Ultra indicates Samsung’s commitment to delivering a premium and durable device to its customers. The use of titanium not only enhances the phone’s structural integrity but also offers a sleek and sophisticated design.
With this advanced material, Samsung is setting a new standard in smartphone construction, surpassing the competition in terms of both aesthetics and resilience.
Samsung didn’t stop with titanium when it came to strengthening the Galaxy S24 Ultra.
The new phone features Corning Gorilla Armor
Which is claimed to be 4x more scratch-resistant than earlier versions of toughened glass. The bottom line is that the Galaxy S24 Ultra is built to handle life’s knocks and bruises, even if we’d still advocate investing in a quality cover and screen protector to keep your phone looking as good as new.
The enhanced durability of the Galaxy S24 Ultra’s glass is a significant improvement, providing users with added peace of mind. However, it is crucial to remember that no matter how resistant the glass may be, accidents can still happen.
Therefore, it is wise to take precautions such as using a high-quality cover and screen protector to maintain the pristine condition of your phone and ensure its longevity.
Seven years of software support
You’ll want to keep your Galaxy S24 Ultra looking pristine for as long as possible, as Samsung has announced a policy adjustment that should enable you to hold on to your phone for as long as you desire.
Previously, Samsung guaranteed four years of Android software updates plus an additional year of security support for its finest Galaxy devices. That’s changing with the Galaxy S24 series, as you’ll now get seven years of software and security support.
Will anyone really want to keep using a phone they acquire in 2024 until the start of the next decade? Maybe not, but it’s still nice to have that option, especially if it helps explain the price of the Galaxy S24 Ultra.
Reasons to avoid the Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra
A restricted range for the zoom lens
Easily the most talked-about improvement for the Galaxy S24 Ultra is its new telephoto lens. Samsung updated one of the 10MP lenses on the Galaxy S23 Ultra with a 50MP lens, which should offer more detailed zooms. But the new 50MP lens only gives a 5x optical zoom, as contrasted to the 10x zoom that the prior 10MP sensor offered.
Despite the reduced optical zoom, Samsung’s decision to upgrade the Galaxy S23 Ultra’s 10MP lens to a 50MP lens is still significant.
The higher resolution of the new lens will undoubtedly result in sharper, more detailed images, even if the zoom capabilities have been compromised. Additionally, the improved sensor size and pixel technology will likely enhance low-light performance, giving users more versatility in various shooting conditions.
Samsung claims that this is an improvement overall, as the 50MP lens can still give 10x zooms of optical quality—it’s condensing the whole 50MP snap into a 12MP picture in that circumstance.
Samsung also asserts that their user research indicates that more Galaxy users shoot at 5x zoom, so it instead centered its efforts toward deploying a sensor capable of collecting more information at better resolutions.
It’s a solid argument in concept, but our early testing suggests that the S23 Ultra’s zoom remains superior. In our Galaxy S24 Ultra vs. Galaxy S23 Ultra zoom testing, S24 zoom photographs at 10x displayed fewer details than identical shots acquired by the S23 Ultra.
We hope to undertake additional testing, particularly with zooms at night, which is a feature the Galaxy S24 Ultra is better suited to accept. But for now, it appears like the telephoto lens has taken a little step backward.
No new S-Pen features
The S Pen moved over from Samsung’s now-departed Galaxy Note line for the Galaxy S21 Ultra. Since then, the biggest difference has been the S Pen becoming more sensitive and finding a spot within the Galaxy S22 Ultra.
Samsung actually hasn’t offered new capabilities. However, the enhanced sensitivity of the S Pen in the Galaxy S22 Ultra allows for more precise and accurate input, making it a valuable tool for creative professionals and note-takers alike.
While Samsung may not have introduced groundbreaking features, the inclusion of the S Pen in the Galaxy S22 Ultra reinforces its commitment to providing a versatile and convenient user experience. With its seamless integration and improved sensitivity, the S Pen continues to be a standout feature for Samsung’s flagship smartphones.
That trend is continuing with the Galaxy S24 Ultra because the S Pen remained untouched from earlier iterations. This looks like a squandered opportunity because the S Pen is one of the Ultra’s most distinguishing features.
Why not add more features that underscore what a fantastic productivity tool it can be, especially in support of forthcoming AI technologies like Circle to Search and various live translation possibilities?
One expensive initial price
When the iPhone 15 Pro Max raised its price by $100 last fall, we considered the additional feature a superb possibility for Samsung. For years, Apple’s best phone has cost less than Samsung’s premium smartphone. Now, it bears the same $1,199 price tag. Surely, this would give Samsung a chance to show off how their phone delivered more bang for all that money.
Instead, Samsung raised the amount of cash you need to hand out. It also upped the price of the phone by $100, as the Galaxy S24 Ultra starts at $1,299. That’s the most Samsung has charged for a phone that doesn’t fold in half.
Yes, Galaxy S24 presale deals may bring that price down, but $1,299 is a lot to pay for a phone, particularly one with minor hardware advancements over the previous year’s model.
Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra outlook
We’re not done testing the Galaxy S24 Ultra yet, but our early opinions are rather amazing. We appreciate the brighter display and long-lasting battery life, and the images shot by the cameras are nice, too, even if we’re not quite convinced that the zoom lens is an advantage over the one on the Galaxy 23 Ultra.
However, the overall performance of the Galaxy S24 Ultra is exceptional, with its lightning-fast processor and smooth interface. The device also boasts impressive storage capacity and a sleek design that is both stylish and ergonomic.
While the zoom lens may not have surpassed its predecessor, the Galaxy S23 Ultra, it still offers great versatility for capturing detailed and high-quality photos. Overall, the Galaxy S24 Ultra is shaping up to be a top contender in the smartphone market.
That said, if a $1,299 initial price makes you question the Galaxy S24 Ultra, we can’t hold it against you. Much of this phone’s attraction is anticipated to lie in its AI features. If you enjoy them, you likely won’t blink at the S24 Ultra’s cost; if they fail to satisfy, then you may want to investigate an alternative phone.
One alternative phone worth considering is the Google Pixel 6 Pro. Priced at a slightly lower range, it also boasts impressive AI capabilities that can rival the Galaxy S24 Ultra.
With its powerful camera and seamless integration with Google’s AI technologies, the Pixel 6 Pro offers a compelling option for those seeking a more budget-friendly yet feature-rich smartphone. Ultimately, it all comes down to personal preferences and priorities when choosing between these high-end devices.