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Best Samsung phones in 2022

Published Mar 15th, 2022 4:00AM EDT
Image: Christian de Looper for BGR

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Samsung easily makes some of the best phones out there. If you’re an Android fan, in fact, it’s hard to avoid the company. Between the Samsung Galaxy S series and the Samsung Galaxy A series, there are all kinds of phones across all kinds of prices. But because the company makes so many phones, it can be hard to find the best Samsung phone for your needs.

That’s why we’ve put together this guide.

Of course, there are a number of things to consider before buying any new phone. If you like to play mobile games a lot or use your device for heavy productivity, it’s worth getting something with at least decent processing power. If you watch movies and TV shows a lot, you’ll want a device with a decent screen size. And, if you want a versatile camera, it’s worth buying something with a wide, ultrawide, and telephoto camera.

Not stuck on a Samsung phone? Check out our full guides on the best Android phones, the best smartphones, and the best iPhones.

Perhaps the most important thing to consider, ultimately, is your budget. But no matter what your budget, we’ve got you covered. Here are the best Samsung phones money can buy.

Best Samsung phone overall: Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra

Samsung Galaxy S22 UltraImage source: Samsung

Pros: Note-style design, beautiful display, excellent camera, fantastic performance

Cons: Expensive, bulky

If you’re looking for the best Samsung phone and aren’t really interested in a foldable phone, then the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra is the way to go. The phone is one of the top-performing phones of the year, offers a stunning design, and more.

The design of the phone won’t be for everyone, but it does look pretty good. The phone looks like an upgraded version of the classic Note-style phones. And, the device is available in some excellent-looking colors. You’ll get a quad-camera system, with one 108-megapixel main camera, one 10-megapixel telephoto camera with 10x optical zoom, one 10-megapixel telephoto camera with 3x optical zoom, and one 12-megapixel ultrawide camera. No matter what situation you’re in, this phone will easily perform.

When it comes to performance, the Galaxy S22 Ultra is at the peak for Android phones right now. You’ll get a Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 processor, coupled with either 8GB or 12GB of RAM, which should be more than enough for most.

There aren’t many downsides to this phone, except for the price. The phone’s retail price is $1,199. That said, it’s routinely on special.

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Best Samsung phone for most people: Samsung Galaxy S22

Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus
Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus color options. Image source: Samsung

Pros: Great camera, solid design, good display, excellent performance

Cons: Battery could be better

If you want the general Galaxy S22 experience, but don’t want to spend the cash on the Galaxy S22 Ultra, then the standard Samsung Galaxy S22 is the phone to get. This device performs almost as well as the Galaxy S22 Ultra, but has a slightly sleeker design and a smaller body.

There are some trade-offs to getting this device over the Galaxy S22 Ultra. Instead of a 1,440p display, you’ll get a 1,080p one. But frankly, the display is still 120Hz, and it looks great. The camera is great too, with one 50-megapixel main camera, one 10-megapixel telephoto camera, and one 12-megapixel ultrawide camera.

Best of all is the fact that the phone performs almost as well as the Galaxy S22 Ultra, but comes in at a much lower cost. In other words, you don’t have to trade in performance for the lower cost — instead, you’re trading in features. But as mentioned, that doesn’t mean that the phone is lacking in features. It just means that the features aren’t quite as premium.

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Best Samsung foldable phone: Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3

Galaxy Z Fold 3Image source: Samsung

Pros: Beautiful displays, refined design, great camera

Cons: Expensive, bulky

Samsung recently unveiled the next generation of its foldable phone lineup, in the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3. The new device builds on the success of the Z Fold 2, but offers a refined design with things like an under-display camera in the inside display.

Of course, this device doesn’t skimp on performance. The Galaxy Z Fold 3 boasts a Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 processor, coupled with 12GB of RAM and either 256GB or 512GB of storage. It’ll easily handle everything you can throw at it. On the back, there’s a triple camera system, with one 12-megapixel main camera, one 12-megapixel telephoto camera, and one 12-megapixel ultrawide camera.

There are plenty of reasons you might want a folding phone. This particular phone has an outer display for quick activities like replying to a text. Then, you can open the device up for things like watching movies and TV shows, and mobile gaming. It’s really hard to explain how great the big-screen gaming experience is on the Galaxy Z Fold 3 without experiencing it for yourself.

So what are the downsides to this phone? Well, notably, it’s very expensive, starting at $1,800. It’s also relatively chunky, to accommodate for that folding display.

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Bets budget Samsung phone: Samsung Galaxy A52

Galaxy A52Image source: Samsung

Pros: Excellent value, solid camera, nice design, good display

Cons: Performance is only fine

If you’re looking for the Samsung experience on a budget, then the Samsung Galaxy A52 is the phone to get. The device may not perform quite as well as the higher-end Galaxy phones, but it still offers a great camera, a super-smooth 120Hz display, and a great design.

The camera in particular is great for a phone in this price range. The Galaxy A52 has a quad-camera system, with one 64-megapixel main camera, one 12-megapixel ultrawide camera, one 5-megapixel macro camera, and one 5-megapixel depth camera. The same logic carries over to the display — it’s great to see high refresh rates bleeding down to cheaper phones.

The device also has a pretty solid design. It’s available in a range of colors, and doesn’t have a camera module that’s too pronounced or large, despite having four cameras on the back. Generally speaking, it looks modern and refined, without the high price tag that often comes with a stylish phone.

So what are the downsides? Well, the performance isn’t the best, though it’s more than enough for most. The Qualcomm Snapdragon 720G processor is a little lower-end. But again, it should perform fine for most users.

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Best cheap Samsung phone: Samsung Galaxy A02

Samsung Galaxy A02Image source: Samsung

Pros: Inexpensive, good battery

Cons: Lackluster performance, only fine camera

If you’re really on a budget and want a Samsung phone in general, then the Samsung Galaxy A02 is the phone to go for. This Galaxy A02 may not offer all the premium features that other Samsung phones give, but it still has a lot going for it.

Notably, the Galaxy A02 has a nice, big edge-to-edge display that should make for a generally immersive experience. There’s a small notch at the top, but you’ll barely notice it. The phone has a dual-camera system, with one 13-megapixel main camera and one 2-megapixel macro camera.

As you might expect from a cheaper device, the Galaxy A02 isn’t perfect. The phone won’t be able to handle quite as much multitasking as the more powerful options on this list, and things like the display and camera aren’t as impressive. But if you’re on a tight budget, then the Samsung Galaxy A02 should still be more than enough phone for most. It’ll still easily handle things like social media, texting and calls, managing emails, and so on.

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Which Samsung series is best, A or S?

In terms of high-end features, Samsung Galaxy S phones are better than Samsung Galaxy A phones. That doesn’t mean that A-series devices are bad though — they still offer solid features at an affordable price, and if they fit your budget, they’re well worth considering.

What does the ‘S’ mean in Samsung Galaxy?

According to Samsung, the ‘S’ stands for “Super Smart.” It’s a bit silly, but it does make sense for phones that are meant to be the highest-end. Really, the ‘S’ is just a marker for Samsung’s highest-end phones.

Is Samsung or Apple better?

Neither. But one or the other might be better for your needs. Apple phones fit better into Apple’s ecosystem of products and are generally a little more intuitive. They also offer top-of-the-line performance and generally last longer. Samsung phones, however, fit better within Google and Samsung’s ecosystem of products, and are more customizable because they run the more open Android operating system.

Christian de Looper Senior Reviews Editor

Christian de Looper is based in sunny Santa Cruz, California. He has been expertly reviewing tech products for more than 8 years, and brings experience in deep technical analysis of consumer electronics devices to BGR's reviews channel.