The Galaxy S23 lineup continues to stand as a formidable contender among the leading Android smartphones in the current market. Although it may not introduce a groundbreaking shift when compared to its predecessor, it undeniably offers a significant improvement for those seeking to transition from the older Galaxy S10 or S20 models. Among the trio of models recently unveiled, the S23+ and S23 Ultra, unquestionably dominate the popularity charts. While these two smartphones share a considerable portion of their genetic makeup, the Ultra boasts some conspicuous enhancements that justify its additional $200 price tag. But are these upgrades truly worth the investment? Let’s delve into a detailed comparison of S23+ vs S23 Ultra to unravel the answer.
Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra vs S23 Plus Detailed Comparison
Learn more about the difference between Samsung Galaxy S23+ vs Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra specs and other features before you make your purchase:
Price and Availability
Samsung’s top phones are found all around the world, whether you want them without ties to a specific carrier or through one.
The S23+ begins with 256GB of storage and 8GB of memory, and it costs $1,000. You can also go for 512GB for $1,150.
The S23 Ultra has three choices. The first one has 256GB of storage and 8GB of memory for $1,200. If you wish to have more memory in your Ultra phone, you’ll need to select a model with higher storage. The 512GB and 1TB models come with 12GB of memory and cost $1,380 and $1,620, respectively. Samsung sometimes gives you the 512GB version as an upgrade for free, at the same price as the 256GB one, so be sure to look at all the options carefully when you buy.
Samsung’s Galaxy S23 series uses a special processor from Qualcomm, called Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 Optimized for Galaxy. It’s the most powerful chip for Android phones, and it’s been fine-tuned to work especially well with Samsung’s latest flagship phones. This processor is a bit faster than the regular Snapdragon 8 Gen 2.
Using the phone feels like what you’d expect from a new model. It runs the Android system, apps, and games smoothly and without problems. But, thanks to the special processor in the Galaxy S23 series, it performs a bit better when you look at test results, and apps seem to open a little faster than on the OnePlus 11, which uses the standard version of the same processor.
The S23 series is more organized than the S22. The smaller S23 and S23+ now have the same camera setup as the S22 Ultra from last year. This makes things more consistent in the product line. However, some of us were hoping the Ultra would have a camera bump, not the other way around.
The S23+ has a completely flat screen, rounded corners, and equal borders around it. The Ultra’s screen has a slight curve that feels nice when you swipe, a slightly larger bottom border, and a square frame that can be a bit uncomfortable to hold. Both phones have Armor Aluminum frames and Gorilla Glass Victus 2 on the front and back.
Each phone comes with One UI 5.1, which is based on Android 13. It’s not a big update, just a small one (0.x), so the changes in the software aren’t huge. But, there are some new features. For instance, the battery widget shows how much battery your phone has and also the battery level of any Bluetooth device connected. The media notification has changed to look like the standard Android 13 design. Plus, there’s a quick way to access Expert RAW mode in the camera app, and more.
One UI 5.1.1 first came out with the Fold/Flip 5 and Tab S9 series and was supposed to be for tablets and foldable devices. However, it looks like the S23 series will also get 5.1.1 this year, with a few small new features. There’s also a One UI 6 beta in progress, and it should become a regular update by the end of the year.
The main software difference is related to the S Pen. When you take out the S Pen while the phone is off, you can leave yourself a note on your Always On Display (AOD). When the phone is on, you can use the cursor to check emails, links, and notifications. You can also use Air Command to open a specific app or do a special task, and, of course, you can draw with the S Pen.
The Galaxy S23 Plus finished the battery test at 67%, just like the iPhone 14 Pro Max. The Galaxy S23 Plus did this with a slightly smaller 6.6-inch screen, which makes it even more impressive than the iPhone 14 Pro Max’s 6.7-inch screen, considering the size. But, the iPhone 14 Plus with its 73% result is still the reigning champ.
The battery test tries to copy a day where you use your phone for both easy and tough stuff. The easy part is watching videos for two hours and streaming music for an hour with Bluetooth headphones. The tough part is doing five rounds of a test app called Geekbench 5 and running a 20-minute 3D Mark Wild Life Stress Test twice.
If you ever find your Galaxy S23 Plus running low on battery, it can charge up fast with 45W speeds, but you need a charger that can do that. Samsung doesn’t give you a charger, so you’ll need to buy one if you don’t already have it.
S23+ vs S23 Ultra – Which Phone Should You Buy?
The Galaxy S23 Plus stands as the best Android phone choice, even with the S23 Ultra in the picture. So, it’s a resounding yes for the S23 Plus. While the S23 Ultra is appealing for those who prefer larger screens and extra camera features, the added cost of $200 and increased weight might make you think twice. Especially when compared to its main competitor, the Google Pixel 7 Pro in the large Android phone category.