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Samsung’s Galaxy S23 Phones Receive Big Processor and Camera Upgrades

by Suzanne Kantra on February 01, 2023

Thinking about upgrading to a new Samsung Galaxy phone? With the Galaxy S23 lineup – the 6.1-inch S23, 6.6-inch S23+, and 6.8-inch S23 Ultra (with S Pen) – Samsung gives you two good reasons; a much more powerful Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor and significantly improved cameras.

Samsung Galaxy S23 line: from the left - S23 Ultra, S23+, and S23.

From the left: Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra, Galaxy S23+, and Galaxy S23

A faster processor

All Galaxy S23 phones will use the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor, which is faster and more feature-rich than the processor used in last year’s Galaxy S22 models, while consuming less power. Notably, you’ll see a 40-percent jump in hardware-accelerated graphics performance for gaming, which you’ll see in better lighting effects, including life-like reflections and shadows, thanks to new support for ray tracing. AI performance has been boosted, translating into more sophisticated image processing (see more below) and other tasks. And the new chip includes a new modem that should enable better 5G coverage in areas with low signal strength.

Better cameras

Not surprisingly, the Galaxy S23 Ultra model receives the biggest camera upgrade in the form of a 200MP wide camera with laser autofocus – up from a 108MP camera with phase-detect autofocus. Like last year’s S22 model, the S23 Ultra combines pixels to form the final image, now combining 16 pixels into one for increased noise reduction in low-light photos and videos. The higher-resolution sensor also improves optical image stabilization, providing double the camera-shake correction angle.

All the Galaxy S23 phones have new 12MP selfie cameras (up from 10MP for the S23 and S23+ and down from 40MP for the S23 Ultra), with improved HDR for pictures and video. And while the S23 and S23+ have the same 50MP cameras on the back as last year's S22 models, Samsung has upgraded the image sensors.

Thanks to the upgraded Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor, all phones have new camera features. Last year, Samsung introduced Nightography, its suite of low-light technologies to improve low-light photos and videos. With the new chip, Nightography improves with enhanced noise reduction in low-light photos and videos. Plus, you’ll be able to take multiple-exposure images and there’s a new one-touch astrophotography feature.

Eco-friendly and durable design

Samsung is using Corning’s new Gorilla Glass Victus 2 for all Galaxy S23 models to provide better protection from drops and scratches than its Galaxy S22 lineup. The Galaxy S23 phones will also be built with more recycled materials, including 22 percent recycled glass and 20 percent recycled ocean-bound plastic.

Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra show in all colors: from the left green, lavender, cream, and phantom black.

Important Specs

Many of the specs remain the same from the Galaxy S22 to the Galaxy S23 line, including the displays, battery capacity, and charging speed. And the size and weight are nearly identical.

  Galayx S23 Galaxy S23+ Galaxy S23 Ultra
Display 6.1-inch AMOLED FHD+ 120Hz adaptive refresh 6.6-inch AMOLED FHD+ 120Hz adaptive refresh 6.8-inch AMOLED QHD+ 120Hz adaptive refresh
Cameras  Wide: 50MP
Ultrawide: 12MP
Telephoto:10MP with 3x optical zoom
Selfie: 12MP with AF
Wide: 50MP
Ultrawide: 12MP
Telephoto: 10MP with 3x optical zoom
Selfie: 12MP with AF
Wide: 200MP with laser AF
Ultrawide: 12MP
Telephoto: 10MP with 3x optical zoom
Telephoto: 10MP with 10x optical zoom
Selfie: 12MP with AF
Memory and Storage 8GB RAM, 128GB or 256GB 8GB RAM, 256GB or 512GB 8GB RAM, 256GB
12GB RAM, 512GB or 1TB 
Battery 3,900mAh 4,700mAh 5,000mAh
Charging Super Fast Charging (25 watts)
Fast Wireless Charging 2.0 (15 watts)
Wireless PowerShare
Super Fast Charging 2.0 (45 watts)
Fast Wireless Charging 2.0 (15 watts)
Wireless PowerShare
Super Fast Charging 2.0 (45 watts)
Fast Wireless Charging 2.0 (15 watts)
Wireless PowerShare
Size 2.79" x 5.76" x 0.3" 3" x 6.21" x 0.3" 3.07" x 6.43" x 0.35"
Weight 5.93 oz 6.91 oz 8.25 oz

Should you upgrade?

While the new processor and camera upgrades are compelling, if you own a Galaxy S22 model, I'd wait to upgrade unless you’re a gamer or want the new 200MP S23 Ultra camera. However, if your phone is older than an S22 model, the Galaxy S23 line represents a big step forward and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend any of the  models.

Pricing and availability

The Samsung Galaxy S23, S23+, and S23 Ultra are available for pre-order on and the phones will be available beginning February 17. The Galaxy S23 will start at $799.99 (128GB), the S23+ will start at $999.99 (256GB), and the S23 Ultra will start at $1,199.99 (256GB). Pre-order customers will receive a one-tier storage upgrade (e.g., 256GB to 512GB) and a Samsung credit of up to $100. All models will come in the same four colors: Phantom Black, Cream, Green, and Lavender.

[Image credit: Samsung]

For the past 20+ years, Techlicious founder Suzanne Kantra has been exploring and writing about the world’s most exciting and important science and technology issues. Prior to Techlicious, Suzanne was the Technology Editor for Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia and the Senior Technology Editor for Popular Science. Suzanne has been featured on CNN, CBS, and NBC.


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