Samsung's latest Galaxy S24 lineup is here, bringing cutting-edge AI capabilities across its models, including the S24, S24+, and the feature-packed S24 Ultra. Aside from screen size and a few hardware changes, what really makes this year's S24 lineup compelling is the Galaxy AI – both cloud-based and built into the device, thanks to the new Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 Galaxy processor.
AI features on your phone
The AI capabilities of the Galaxy S24 series set a new standard in smartphone technology. At the heart of these features is the ProVisual Engine, which uses AI to transform the way you capture and interact with images. Whether you're cropping, resizing, or reframing photos, AI simplifies these tasks, with additional capabilities for effortlessly removing unwanted reflections or even adding frames to convert standard videos into captivating slow-motion clips.
Galaxy AI also revolutionizes how you interact with information. By simply circling an item on your screen or pointing your camera at it, AI fetches Google search results, identifying objects and providing relevant links without app switching.
In addition, Galaxy AI will even help make us better communicators. Imagine how useful it will be to get real-time translations of phone calls in 13 languages right on your device. And since we speak differently when talking to our friends vs. work colleagues, AI can alter the tone of your text messages using something called Chat Assist, which will suggest language inline with the tone of the chat.
A new camera for the Ultra series
The S24 Ultra is the only model to receive significant camera upgrades. The S24 Ultra's main 200MP sensor has pixels that are 60% larger than the S23 Ultra's, for brighter, richer images. The S24 Ultra is also equipped with an optical image stabilizer that can compensate for twice as much motion as that of the S23 Ultra, resulting in less handshake when taking high-zoom shots. Samsung has traded last year's 10MP telephoto 10x zoom lens for a 50MP telephoto 5x zoom, which the company says is better for a wider range of shooting scenarios. Holdovers from last year are the 12MP ultra-wide camera, 10MP telephoto 3x zoom, and 12MP selfie camera.
The S24 and S24+ both have the same 2MP ultra-wide camera, 50MP wide camera, 10MP telephoto with 3X optical zoom, and 12MP selfie camera as the corresponding S23 models.
All three S24 models have displays with 2,600 nits peak brightness outdoors – up 40% from last year – and 120 Hz adaptive refresh rates. The latter, available on last year's models, vastly improves performance efficiency, especially for gamers.
The phones look very similar to last year's Galaxy S23 models, with the S24 and S24+ getting a slight screen size increase – up 0.1 inches to a 6.2-inch Galaxy S24 and 6.7-inch S24+. And the S24+ also gets a bump in screen resolution from FHD+ to QHD+.
The S24 Ultra retains a 6.8-inch screen and gets a new titanium casing, something Apple introduced on the latest iPhone 15 Pro and 15 Pro Max models, making it sturdier and just slightly lighter than the S23 Ultra. The screen is protected by Corning Gorilla Armor, which reduces reflections and glare. The Ultra continues to come with a built-in S Pen.
The S24 and S24+ also get a slight bump in battery; the S24 has a 4,000 mAh battery, while the S24+ has a 4,900 mAh battery. The S24 Ultra has the same 5,000 mAh battery capacity as the S23 Ultra.
Should you upgrade?
Whether you prefer a larger or smaller screen, we’ve never been more confident in suggesting you upgrade to the S24 smartphone if you have a Samsung Galaxy S22 or earlier. The AI capabilities not only help make editing and searching tasks easier and more efficient, but having AI on the device as opposed to going out to the cloud for processing cuts down on lag time and will increase privacy.
If you’re rocking an S23, unless you are clamoring for the latest AI features there’s not much of a noticeable difference from the S24 lineup. However, if you have the budget and the desire for an S24 Ultra, you’re getting more for your money with the new titanium design and upgraded cameras.
Samsung is sweetening the deal by offering seven years of OS upgrades and security updates for the S24 series, like Google offers for the Pixel 8 series.
Pricing and availability
The Samsung Galaxy S24, S24+, and S24 Ultra are available for pre-order now on Samsung.com, and the phones will be available beginning January 31st. The Galaxy S24 will start at $799.99 with 128GB and 256GB storage options. The S24+ will start at $999.99 with 256GB and 512GB storage options, and the S24 Ultra starts at $1,299.99 with 256GB, 512GB, and 1TB storage capacity options.
Color options for the Galaxy S24+ and Galaxy S24 are Marble Gray, Amber Yellow, Onyx Black, and Cobalt Violet (my personal fav). If you're looking at the Galaxy S24 Ultra, color options are Titanium Gray, Titanium Black, Titanium Violet, and Titanium Yellow, plus additional colors, Titanium Green, Titanium Blue, and Titanium Orange, available only on Samsung.com.
If you pre-order a Galaxy S24 series device, you're eligible for a free storage upgrade, so you can purchase a 512GB S24 Ultra and receive a 1TB model at no additional cost on Samsung.com.
[Image credit: Samsung]