Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra Review: Has the iPhone 13 Pro turned GREEN with envy?

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra Review: Has the iPhone 13 Pro turned GREEN with envy?

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra deserves the label of “king of smartphones” this year, leaving a high benchmark for its rivals to surpass. Read to learn more about it.

When Samsung calls its phone “the Ultra,” you know it’s going to be pretty special, considering the regular Samsung S22 is loaded to the teeth. With the Galaxy S22 Ultra, Samsung has taken things to a level where there is no competition. Armed with an S Pen and vastly improved cameras over last year’s Galaxy S21 Ultra, the S22 Ultra wipes out the iPhone 13 Pro on paper. And, for its starting price of Rs. 1,09,999, the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra looks like a steal for what it offers.

In India, the biggest change for Samsung fans comes in the form of their choice of chipset. Samsung ditches the unpopular Exynos-branded chipset in favor of the more desirable Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chip, the one powering most elite Android phones right now. Coupled with the promised four years of OS updates, the Galaxy S22 Ultra looks tempting as a viable alternative to the iPhone 13 Pro Series.

But what happens outside the paper? Is the Galaxy S22 Ultra the most desirable really? It’s time to find out.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra Design

“This Galaxy Note, errr, Galaxy S22 Ultra is…”, “I’m impressed with the cameras on this Galaxy Note, errr, Galaxy Ultra” – here are some of my statements about the phone while discussing it with someone – you get the point, TRUE? Because from every angle, the Galaxy S22 Ultra is reminiscent of the long-dead Galaxy Note 20 Ultra. The same squared-off edges, huge phablet-like form factor, and S Pen silo sitting where there was nothing before on the S21 Ultra.

In this burgundy shade that I have, the Galaxy S22 Ultra looks luxurious. That element of the camera’s design has caused controversy among people, and I’m not going to stir it up. Personally, I like it for its distinctive identity in an era where the iPhone 13 Pro’s camera hump looks clunky and overly ostentatious. However, it doesn’t command attention as well as the iPhone. The front does, however, with its slightly curved edges on the screen and very slim bezels. This is an attractive phone.

It’s well built too. The Armor Aluminum frame and Gorilla Glass Victus Plus on the front and back make the S22 Ultra highly durable and scratch resistant. In the two weeks of use, my Burgundy S22 Ultra is scratch-free, despite witnessing the dusty Noida exterior. It’s IP68 certified for water and dust resistance, if you were wondering.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra Screen

The S21 Ultra had the best screen of any phone last year and it looks like history is repeating itself this year. Measuring 6.8-inches this time around and with more angular edges, this Dynamic AMOLED panel is a treat for the eyes. With QHD+ resolution, everything looks sharp while being vibrant and bright. Brightness levels go up to 1750 nits, meaning the S22 Ultra’s screen looked normally like most phones under indoor lighting.

Vision Booster technology keeps color contrast and all other technical aspects balanced so you see everything as it was meant to. And thanks to LTPO 2.0 technology, the variable refresh rate between 1Hz and 120Hz keeps everything smooth and also saves battery life handsomely. The ultrasonic fingerprint sensor is fast although the detection area is narrow.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra Performance

With a Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chip at the helm, things are looking good for the S22 Ultra so far. Paired with Samsung’s One UI 4.1 experience, the Galaxy S22 Ultra offers the most complete Android smartphone experience. And despite being loaded to the teeth with all the features and tricks of the S Pen software, the Galaxy S22 Ultra is as smooth as any standard Android device.

Like all Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 phones, the Galaxy S22 Ultra handles multitasking and the most generic performance with absolute ease. It certainly does get hot when gaming or driving with a handful of apps in the background, but never enough to cause discomfort. Even while playing games like Call of Duty: Mobile and Shadow Fight 4: Legends, the S22 Ultra continues to run smoothly and quickly, with no noticeable frame drops.

Samsung’s One UI 4.1 in its latest avatar is easily the second best Android experience, right behind Motorola’s Android 12 iteration. It’s definitely packed with extras, including apps from Samsung and alternatives to the pre-installed apps from Google and Microsoft. But everything is pretty much laid out and once you get used to the leisurely pace of One UI, everything feels comfortable. The software is so loaded that it makes the iPhone 13 Pro’s iOS 15 look like a Spartan cave by comparison. Utility seekers will find the One UI experience comparable to a Windows PC. This is high praise for a phone.

Part of that “PC-like” experience has to do with the S Pen stylus. Just like the Galaxy Note, it’s always a click away. Whether you’re doodling or taking quick notes on the lock screen, the S Pen’s arrival on the S22 Ultra as a native feature makes sense. When using spreadsheets or Word documents, having the S Pen helps with precise cursor placement or resizing tables. The Smart Select feature is a gem of a feature, making free selection on your phone screen a breeze; like on a Windows PC. You can even use the stylus to take photos hands-free. And once you’re done, just pop it inside the phone.

Samsung tries to emulate Apple by partnering with Google Duo for its “Centerstage-like” feature that adjusts the framing during a video call. It works fine but needs to be adopted by more video calling apps.

Audio quality from the S22 Ultra’s stereo speakers is excellent. There’s a solid depth to the audio signature, with nuanced bass and bass. And they get pretty loud. Connectivity performance has been excellent so far, with the phone easily connecting to 4G networks in difficult areas.

To the cameras now…

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra Cameras

The Galaxy S22 Ultra currently has the most versatile rear camera array on any smartphone. The setup looks identical to the S21 Ultra, but there are significant updates underneath. And the star here remains Samsung’s 100X Space Zoom feature, which works brilliantly up to 40X.

In daylight, photos from the 108MP main camera look vibrant with high dynamic range, good contrast, and no noise. Samsung tends to increase the saturation of photos by default, but the end result is still very attractive to most eyes. The same color profile applies to 12MP ultrawide photos, but there is some loss of sharpness. The 3X zoom camera is best suited for human portraits, but it’s the 10X zoom camera that wins me over. Post processing has improved compared to the S21 Ultra and therefore 10X zoom photos have more detail and look sharper. Digital magnification works great up to 40X, beyond which it gets blurry. But you can still go looking for planes with the S22 Ultra’s zoom camera, which can’t be said for any other high-end phone right now. This is easily the best zoom camera system on any phone that we’ve seen so far.

And this zoom camera also takes photos of the Moon at night! That too with a 40-50X zoom, discovering the craters and the colors of the Moon! All while holding it in my hands, not on a tripod! I’m sold, Samsung. Take my money.

At night, the performance level varies depending on the sensors. The main camera does a brilliant job with colours, sharpness, details and noise suppression. The other three cameras suffer from loss of detail and anti-aliasing, but you can still get usable photos, as long as you have steady hands.

Click here to see some sample photos

Video recording performance has been excellent, with the S22 Ultra doing a great job with 4K at 30fps mode and 1080p at 30fps mode. Video stability is among the best in the business. However, it still loses out to the iPhone 13 Pro in terms of overall treatment and sharpness. Getting the ExpertRAW app allows you to have more detailed photos in natural colors for editing in Adobe Lightroom.

The 40MP front camera is well tuned too. It handles bright exposures well while keeping the subject in focus. Color treatment is vivid, while edge detection in portrait mode is among the best in the industry. The same goes for the rear camera’s portrait modes, where edge detection around tricky strands of hair and loose clothing is handled well.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra Battery Life

I had reservations about the regular 5,000mAh battery driving a QHD+ display and Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chip. However, with regular office workloads, the Galaxy S22 Ultra easily lasted me more than a day and a few. In fact, after a full charge in the morning, I usually had to charge the S22 Ultra the next afternoon; all this while doing 3-4 hours of talking, photography sessions, the usual 2 hours of social media browsing and music streaming. the bottom. With an hour of gameplay involved, the stamina is down to a single day.

I did not have the 45W charger at my disposal but Motorola 68W Fast Charger supports 45W output, which enabled “Super Quick Charge 2.0”. This meant that the S22 Ultra regularly charged from 5 to 100 percent in just over an hour. Not as fast as 120W charging on the iQOO9 Pro but it does the job. Wireless charging speeds are still substantially slow at 15 W.

Verdict

There is no doubt that the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra is one of the best all-around phones money can buy today. With its solid package of supreme and reliable user experience, tremendously good cameras, stunning display, and good battery life, the S22 Ultra doesn’t disappoint on the basics. The S Pen is definitely a value-added feature this year and if you need a stylus on your phone every day, this is the phone for you. The luxurious design and build quality easily make the Galaxy S22 Ultra the winner for us. There is simply nothing like it!

But is this okay for you? The closest competition the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra gets is the iPhone 13 Pro Max. The iPhone is more expensive but has a more reliable set of video cameras; not forgetting the unmatched longevity in terms of software support. However, for someone who is neutral to the iOS and Android ecosystems, the iPhone 13 Pro feels barebones compared to the S22 Ultra, especially when you need to get work done quickly without any shenanigans.

You also have the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 as another alternative, but practicality and durability are factors to consider before spending more.

So at this point, the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra wins our top recommendation for a luxury flagship, beating the iPhone 13 Pro by a mega margin. Phone of the year? Let’s wait for Apple’s reaction in September when the iPhone 14 Pro arrives.

Product name

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra

advantage

  • it looks splendid
  • excellent screen
  • great cameras
  • Good battery life

Cons

  • Video recording can be better
  • Heavy

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