This year, Samsung has launched another device in its Galaxy S series in addition to the S20 and S20 Plus: the Galaxy S20 Ultra. As the name suggests, Samsung is positioning the S20 Ultra as the “Ultra-Flagship”. It should be the best Samsung has to offer at this time.
Here I will give an overview of what the Ultra flagship of the world’s largest smartphone manufacturer has to offer and if it is a good choice.
Workmanship and design
As you would expect from Samsung, the Galaxy S20 Ultra is also beautifully finished. The front is clean and symmetrical. The 40 megapixel selfie camera in the tiny punch hole is located in the middle upper edge of the display.
Originally, Samsung was the trendsetter for the Edge display, which is rounded at the sides, but they have now built a fairly flat display into this year’s Galaxy-S phones, which I find a welcome change.
With a screen diagonal of 6.9 inches and a thickness of 8.8 mm, the Galaxy S20 Ultra is one of the largest smartphones currently available on the market and is not exactly the most handy device. Therefore, it is probably less suitable for people with small hands and people who like to use their phone one-handed. However, as a fan of large smartphones, I like it very much.
The glass back is available in Cosmic Black, Cosmic Gray and Cloud White and, unlike the display, bends around the sides of the device where the thin aluminium frame is located. At the top left of the back is the solid camera module with four different lenses, which allows you to recognize the S20 Ultra from a long distance.
All in all, I think the design of the S20 Ultra is really well done and, in terms of looks, my favourite so far this year.
Hardware and Specsheet
Here in the EU, under the hood of the Galaxy S20 Ultra is the Exynos 990, Samsung’s latest in-house SoC. At its side are a whole 12/16 GB RAM, as well as 128 GB or 512 GB fast UFS 3.0 memory. This puts the S20 Ultra at the forefront in terms of performance, similar to a OnePlus 8 Pro, which uses Snapdragon 865. But I didn’t expect anything else from a premium unit like the S20 Ultra. To make all this power and especially the energy hungry display possible, a 5.000 mAh battery is built into the S20 Ultra.
One little thing that I find disturbing is that there are two versions of the Galaxy S20 Ultra. The EU version with the Exynos 990 and the US version with the Snapdragon 865, but in terms of performance and energy efficiency, the Snapdragon is superior to the Exynos in the S20 Ultra. The US variant should offer about 10% more performance in the benchmark, as well as about 2 hours more screen-on-time (source: Notebookcheck). It is a pity that the version with the Snapdragon is not available in the EU and the price is still identical.
Due to the current Corona pandemic, I was not able to test the 5G functionality of the Galaxy S20 Ultra, because there is no 5G reception at home.
On the front of the Galaxy S20 Ultra is a 6.9-inch “Quad HD+ Dynamic AMOLED 2X Infinity-O Display”, as Samsung calls it. This makes it the most rimless front of a smartphone I’ve ever seen in person.
The panel itself plays in the absolute top class of currently available smartphone displays. 120 Hz refresh rate is a game changer compared to last year’s 60 Hz. In my opinion, a higher refresh rate like 90 or 120 Hz is an absolute must for anyone who wants to get a new smartphone this year, as it gives a completely different feeling of the phone’s power. Comparable to an HDD to an SSD in a PC.
The colour reproduction of the display is also great, as you would expect from Samsung. Crisp colours, thanks to HDR10+, in dark or bright lighting conditions. As well as very sharp 1440p or a pixel density of 511 ppi at 60 Hz. At 120 Hz, on the other hand, only a Full-HD resolution so far. This is enough for me personally. I don’t see too much difference between Full-HD and 1440p and prefer to profit from the higher battery life of the lower resolution. This is also the case with my Daily-Driver, the OnePlus 8 Pro, where 120 Hz and 1440p are possible at the same time. Nevertheless, it’s quite likely that Samsung will enable QHD + 120Hz in a future update.
Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra 5G Smartphone Bundle (17,44 cm) 128 GB interner Speicher, 12 GB RAM, Hybrid SIM,Android inkl. 36 Monate Herstellergarantie [Exklusiv bei Amazon]Deutsche Version, cosmic black price comparison
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