Samsung Galaxy S23 Series: What We Know So Far
As we move closer to the launch of the Samsung Galaxy S23 series which will comprise the S23, S23 Plus, and S23 Ultra, here is everything we know, or let me say everything we have heard so far but may not be confirmed until they are officially announced.
1.) Processing Power – Latest Qualcomm Chipset
For many years now, Samsung S series flagships have been powered by Qualcomm and Exynos latest chipset with the Qualcomm Snapdragon variant being the ones officially sold in the United States and Europe getting the Exynos variant.
There are times when the Snapdragon variant is sold in other countries such as China alongside the US and the same with the Exynos variants being sold in other parts of the world too alongside the UK and other European countries.
But there have been speculations over the past couple of months that the upcoming Samsung flagships will be powered by the Qualcomm chipset globally.
Qualcomm announced its new flagship chipset – The Snapdragon 8 Gen 2, in November 2022 and it is already powering some smartphones including the latest Xiaomi 13 series which was announced earlier this month (December 2022).
However, there have been reports that the S23 family will be powered by an overclocked variant of this Octa-core processor which will make it faster than the ones other manufacturers are or will be getting.
Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor is reported to have three CPU clusters just like the S22 series but different.
The Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 that the S23 series will use, will have CPU clusters that comprise 1 x 3.36 GHz cluster, 4 x 2.8 GHz cluster, and 3 x 2.0 GHz cluster. This is expected to be faster and more power efficient that its predecessors – the 8 Gen 1 and 8+ Gen 1.
There have been benchmarks that show the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 with a higher multicore score on Geekbench 5 than last year’s A15 bionic powering the iPhone 14 though still has a higher single-core score.
The A16 Bionic that powers the iPhone 14 Pro and 14 Pro Max still outperforms the 8 Gen 2 but not in the significantly embarrassing way that it has been for the past couple of years. So, it is nice that they are closing in on Apple’s Silicon.
If there is going to be an Exynos variant, it is most probably going to be powered by the upcoming Exynos 2300.
As for the RAM and Internal storage options, they will be the same as their predecessors with S23 and S23 Plus featuring 8GB RAM only option with 128GB and 256GB internal storage options while the S23 Ultra will have 8GB and 12GB RAM options and internal storage options of 256GB, 512GB, and 1TB.
There isn’t going to be an SD card slot as the case has been for a few years now. Also, the S23 family will run on Android 13 out of the box with possibly One UI 5.1 and not One UI 5.
2.) Battery – Most Likely The Same as the S22 Series
The S22 and S22 Plus disappointingly were packed with a smaller battery (3700 mAh and 4500 mAh respectively) than their predecessor the S21 and S21 Plus (4000 mAh and 4800 mAh) while the S22 Ultra was packed with the same battery capacity as the S21 Ultra.
This move affected how long the S22 and S22 Plus could last on a single charge which wasn’t great compared to their competition especially the iPhone 13 series.
The S23 Ultra battery is said to be the same 5000 mAh with 45 watts fast charging support while the S23 and S23 Plus will likely remain the same or see a slight bump to 3900 mAh for the S23 and 4700 mAh for the S23 Plus. Both of which are still less than what we got on the S21 and S21 Plus as stated above.
The S23 Plus will still support 45 watts fast charging while the S23 will also retain its predecessor’s 25 watts fast charging.
In a nutshell, there isn’t going to be much change on the battery side which isn’t great as far as I am concerned. I will like to see at least 4500 mAh on both the S23 and S23 Plus and at least 5500 or maybe even 6000 mAh on the S23 Ultra.
I would also like to see 65 watts fast charging on these devices. But all these are just wishes that most likely won’t come true. So, moving on.
3.) Display – Same for S23 and S23 Plus, Brighter for S23 Ultra
All reports point to one thing, the S23 and S23 Plus will have the same 6.1 inches and 6.6 inches screen sizes respectively with Full HD+ (2340 x 1080 pixels) screen resolution and 120Hz high refresh rate AMOLED panel as their predecessors.
However, while the S23 Ultra will also be getting the same 6.8 inches screen size with a 120Hz high refresh rate AMOLED panel and Quad HD+ (3088 x 1440 pixels) screen resolution, it will reportedly have a bump in brightness from 1750 nits (peak) of the S22 Ultra to 2150 nits (peak) which will be higher than the iPhone 14 Pro and 14 Pro Max 2000 nits (peak) brightness.
The brightness of the S23 and S23 Plus is likely to remain the same as last year which was 1300 nits for the S22 and 1750 nits for the S22 Plus.
There is also a slight chance that the S23 Ultra or maybe even the entire S23 family will come with the Qualcomm 3D Sonic Max fingerprint scanner that was announced earlier in 2022.
This new fingerprint scanner has a surface area that is 17 times larger than the 3D Sonic Gen 2 used on the S22 Ultra and can even accommodate two fingers at the same time. It is also said to be faster and at least 5 times more accurate.
It would be great to have this scanner on the S23 Ultra but it seems they most likely will stick to the ones on its predecessor.
4.) Design – The Same Except for Camera Housing on S23 and S23 Plus
For the S23 and S23 Plus, there isn’t going to be any design change if you are looking at the front but immediately you switch to the back, you will notice a significant difference.
The S23 and S23 Plus will be borrowing the S22 Ultra’s design where all the cameras stand on their own and not being housed together in a single camera chassis that blended into the sides as seen on previous generations.
S23 Ultra of course will stick to the same design as the S22 Ultra at the back but there may be a slight change at the front. It may have a more curved display than any Samsung flagships in the past. However, there is a high possibility that it will retain the same overall design as the S22 Ultra.
And Yes, the S23 Ultra will support a Stylus Pen which will be in-built like the case was for its predecessor.
There is newly surfaced information about the design and colors of the S23 Plus and S23 Ultra, which is in line with the above image and also reveals the signature colors.
5.) Camera – Changes in Selfie Camera Across Board
The Ultrawide, Telephoto, and Primary/Wide cameras of the S23 and S23 Plus are reportedly going to remain the same. This means the S23 and S23 Plus will be using the same rear camera sensors as their predecessors.
However, there is going to be a better front-facing camera. The S23, S23 Plus, and S23 Ultra will be using the same 12MP front-facing camera which will be up from 10MP for the S23 and S23 Plus compared to their predecessor but down from 40MP for the S23 Ultra compared to the S22 Ultra.
However, as we all know, a bigger or smaller sensor doesn’t necessarily mean great or bad picture quality. The 12MP selfie camera is reportedly going to have OIS and Auto Focus which will result in better image and video quality.
Finally, the S23 Ultra’s Primary camera at the rear is going to see a bump from the 108MP on the S22 Ultra to the 200MP sensor which is reportedly going to output better daylight and lowlight pictures and videos.
6.) Launch Date and Price
Except for the S21 series that was announced in mid-January 2021, previous announcements for the past few years have been in February. And most reports are pointing to a February launch.
I have written about a possible Galaxy Unpacked event on February 1, 2023, which is expected to be the unveiling of the S23 series but every other report too has pointed to early and mid-February.
As for the price, it is reportedly going to remain the same as the S22 series which will be $799 for the S23, $999 for the S23 Plus, and $1,199 for the S23 Ultra but there is a slight chance that it might increase.
This page will continuously be updated until the devices are officially announced.
Sources (Twitter): Steve – (@OnLeaks) and Ice Universe – (@UniverseIce).