Samsung announced its flagship Galaxy S20 lineup earlier this week, and the dust is finally settling so we can all fully process everything the company announced. Strategically, we have no idea what the heck Samsung is thinking. The entry-level Galaxy S phone was Samsung’s best-selling model last year according to estimates, but the Galaxy S20 line completely abandons the “entry-level flagship” segment. In the US, Samsung’s new Galaxy S20 smartphones will start at $1,000 and climb all the way above $1,500 for a maxed-out Galaxy S20 Ultra. The company will continue to sell its Galaxy S10 phones with a $150 discount on each model, but last year’s phone is a tough sell when this year’s iPhone 11 starts at $699.
Moving beyond strategy, however, there’s really no question whatsoever that Samsung’s new Galaxy S20 lineup is made up of the three most impressive Android smartphones we have ever seen. They all feature bleeding-edge specs with an unprecedented minimum of 12GB of RAM that goes up to 16GB in the ultra-premium Galaxy S20 Ultra, and they all feature big, beautiful OLED displays atop stunning all-screen designs with hole-punch cameras. When it comes to the cameras, however, it’s not the front-facing hole-punch cameras that are the talk of the town right now. It’s the unrivaled 108-megapixel camera on the Galaxy S20 Ultra, and it has now officially blown my mind.
The new Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra features specs that will leave just about anyone’s jaw on the floor. Highlights include a 6.9-inch Dynamic OLED screen with 3200 x 1440-pixel resolution, a 120Hz refresh rate, and a pixel density of 509 ppi; a screen-to-body ratio of 90.7%; an octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 SM8250 chipset in the US; up to 16GB of LPDDR5 RAM; up to 512GB of storage; a 5,000 mAh battery and more. That’s all beyond impressive, needless to say, but there’s one set of specs in particular that’s even more impressive than all that: The camera specs.
Some people think the rather large quad-lens camera array on the back of the Galaxy S20 Ultra is a bit of an eyesore. I think those people will get over it pretty quickly when they see what Samsung managed to stuff into that big camera bump. The main camera is a mind-blowing 108-megapixel sensor, and it’s accompanied by a 48-megapixel telephoto sensor, a 12-megapixel ultra-wide camera, and a time-of-flight (ToF) sensor for additional data collection.
There’s no other widely-available smartphone out there that comes anywhere close to measuring up on paper. But what about in practice? Well, we haven’t begun to test the Galaxy S20 Ultra yet ourselves, but what we’ve seen so far has been quite impressive. Early samples of the Galaxy S20 Ultra camera’s night mode and Space Zoom features were impressive, but new samples that focus on the camera’s clarity might be even better.
Check out the image above. It was captured by a Galaxy S20 Ultra and it’s a little blurry, right? Well, that image is actually cropped from a minuscule portion of this photo, which was captured by the Galaxy S20 Ultra’s main 108-megapixel sensor and posted on Twitter by Ice Universe:
Yeah, it’s absolutely insane. Want to see another one? How about the second set of samples posted by Ice Universe:
That one’s even blurrier… what gives?! Well, look how small that crop is from the original photo:
We’ve never seen anything quite this impressive on a smartphone, and I can’t wait to test it out myself. The Galaxy S20 Ultra starts at a whopping $1,400 though, so you’ll have to pay a pretty penny if you want a camera this good in your pocket in 2020.