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Samsung Galaxy s24 series Review

by AM Tradez 23 Feb 2024
Samsung Galaxy s24 series Review

Samsung Galaxy S24 series Review

Looking for a smaller phone that still packs a punch? 

Samsung has got you covered with their Galaxy S24, a top-notch compact phone. Despite being 6.2 inches, it's considered compact in today's world of larger 6.7-inch+ phones. The Galaxy S24 boasts an upgraded design, faster performance, enhanced cameras, and the added charm of "Galaxy AI." 

Let's explore these new features and discover why the Galaxy S24 stands out as one of the best compact phones of the year.

Galaxy S24 Design & Colors

The appearance of the Galaxy S24 maintains the distinctive Samsung style, featuring three separate camera lenses on the back with some notable improvements.

One noticeable change is the flat sides of the phone, similar to recent iPhones. This design not only aligns with the current trend but also makes it easier to pick up the device from a table.

Despite not being "mini" sized, the Galaxy S24 remains compact, with a size very similar to the previous model. The new Armor Aluminum frame adds durability, and the matte finish on the sides prevents fingerprint smudges. The seamless connection between the rear panel and the frame adds a nice touch.

On the front, the borders around the screen are slightly smaller, providing a more immersive appearance. Other features remain consistent, such as the IP68 rating, USB-C port at the bottom, and power and volume keys on the right side. 

Official Galaxy S24 colors:

  • Marble Gray
  • Cobalt Violet
  • Onyx Black
  • Amber Yellow

Galaxy S24 Display

The Galaxy S24 comes with a slightly larger 6.17-inch screen, and it's super bright, reaching 2,600 nits of peak brightness. This is a significant upgrade from the previous model's 1,750 nits, making it much easier to use the phone outdoors.

Now, even the regular model features a 1Hz-120Hz refresh rate, a feature that was previously exclusive to the Ultra model. With a 1Hz refresh rate for static content, the phone conserves more battery, extending its life a bit. The screen borders have also slimmed down, offering a more immersive look.

Although the resolution remains at 1080p, it's sharp enough for most users. For biometrics, there's an ultrasonic in-screen fingerprint reader with a newer and faster sensor. While it may not be a massive change, it's noticeable, and considering how often one unlocks their phone, it's seen as one of the more significant improvements in the Galaxy S24.

Galaxy S24 Camera

The Galaxy S24's camera, with its three lenses on the back, seems unchanged in appearance, and the hardware is indeed the same. Samsung is sticking with the same main camera sensor for the third consecutive year, and there are no alterations to the ultra-wide and 3X zoom cameras.

However, there's a noticeable difference in the photos and videos captured by the S24 camera. One significant improvement is the addition of HDR preview in the viewfinder, allowing users to see exactly how the photo will look before taking it—a feature absent in the S23 series.

Samsung has also given images a fresh look, eliminating the oversharpening seen in previous generations. Colors are now more balanced and toned down, contributing to a more natural appearance. While the tonality remains slightly warm, it's a substantial improvement.

This improvement applies to all cameras—the wide, ultra-wide, and even zoomed-in photos all benefit. The result is a more natural look that many users will appreciate. Despite not having new camera hardware, this might be the most significant upgrade for the Samsung camera in years.

Additionally, there are a few new AI photo editing features, indicated by the blue icon with three stars.

  • erase shadows and reflections
  • erase a whole object
  • move and resize an object in a photo.

Video capabilities have been enhanced, and a cool addition is the Instant Slow-mo feature. By long-pressing a video, a specific moment slows down, and the AI generates missing frames, allowing users to replay that special moment in smooth slow motion.

For those concerned about the authenticity of edits, a label is added to the metadata of all AI-enhanced images and videos, providing transparency about the enhancements made.

Galaxy S24 Performance & Benchmarks

The Galaxy S24 uses the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 chipset in the United States, while other markets get a version powered by a Samsung Exynos 2400 chipset.

These new chips provide a nice performance boost, but Samsung is also putting a significant focus on the "Galaxy AI" element of performance rather than just raw speed.

In this review, the Exynos version was used, and when running the GeekBench 6 CPU-focused benchmark, a substantial improvement in multi-core speeds was observed.

Gaming performance is also enhanced, coming very close to the industry-leading iPhone 15 Pro.

The Galaxy S24 comes with 8GB of RAM, which is less than the 12GB in the larger models. This might be a bit disappointing for power users, as less RAM could lead to apps in the background reloading more often and potentially impacting the smoothness of multitasking.

Galaxy S24 Software

The Galaxy S24 comes equipped with Android 14 and the latest One UI 6.1 from Samsung.

While the new One UI 6.1 maintains the same visuals as its 6.0 predecessor, it introduces several AI-powered features. The native Phone app now supports real-time translation of phone calls in 13 languages, using on-device AI for privacy. This feature extends to voice and text translation.

The Samsung keyboard is enhanced with Chat Assist, allowing users to translate messages with a button press. Suggestions for adjusting message tone and emojis are also provided.

When using Android Auto, Galaxy AI summarizes messages for quick glances and suggests quick replies. For meetings or voice recordings, Transcript Assist provides summaries and translations if necessary.

A notable new feature, Circle to Search with Google, debuts on the Galaxy S24. Users can long-press the home button to circle any item on the screen (e.g., a landmark) for a quick search.

Samsung commits to an impressive seven years of OS upgrades and security patches for the Galaxy S24, a significant improvement from the S23 series, which only supported four years of OS upgrades. This extended software support is excellent news for users.

Galaxy S24 Battery

The Galaxy S24 comes with a slightly larger 4,000mAh battery, a small increase from last year's 3,900mAh. While this is only a 2.5% boost, it doesn't result in significant changes to battery life.

Galaxy S24 Audio Quality and Haptics

Samsung makes subtle tweaks to its phone speakers every year, and the Galaxy S24 doesn't bring a significant improvement in loudspeaker quality.

While it can get reasonably loud (though not as loud as larger phones), it performs well with music that has minimal bass. However, it struggles with lower frequencies, a common issue on many phones. Competitors like iPhones offer a bit more bass in comparison. On the positive side, the Galaxy does a great job with talking head videos.

There don't appear to be any changes to the vibration motor. While the phone provides a nice and pleasant vibration feedback during typing, it falls slightly short of the refined haptic feedback found on devices like the OnePlus 12 and the latest iPhones, which seem to be in a different league.

Final Thoughts

The Galaxy S24 doesn't bring a massive upgrade, and its main promoted feature, Galaxy AI, will soon be available on older Galaxy models through a software update.

However, there are still some exciting new features. The new design is preferred, the faster fingerprint scanner is appreciated, and the changes in image quality this year are notable. The introduced AI features are also genuinely cool. The Galaxy now boasts a better screen, and it's appreciated that it can be both bright and dim at night, providing a more comfortable viewing experience for the eyes.

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