Samsung Galaxy S22+ Review: Striking a Balance


On the outside, Samsung’s newest S22+ merely looks as if every other incremental improve with a acquainted face, however is there extra to this middle-child of a Galaxy S phone than the predicted annual {hardware} updates and design revisions?

While the ‘S’ branding inside of Samsung’s Galaxy naming conference has at all times been tied to the corporate’s flagship Android telephones, the ‘+’ suffix is a reasonably contemporary addition to the lineage whose serve as continues to modify over the years.

The most blatant distinction between the S22 and the S22+ – as is correct of earlier generations – is the bigger measurement that the Plus type sports activities; to not point out the additional advantages that its further quantity brings. Moving from the usual to the Plus no longer most effective manner a larger display screen however a higher battery too.

With the extension of an Ultra-branded access inside of each and every yr’s Galaxy S line, the Plus type additionally serves as one thing of a melting pot; melding the extra modest {hardware} of the bottom S phone with touches of the extra top class and complex options that may in a different way be unique to the Ultra.

As such, whilst the Galaxy S22+ won’t seem like essentially the most thrilling access on this yr’s flagship Samsung line-up, it is arguably the phone with the broadest enchantment, in the case of measurement, options and function.

Design & construct

  • Stylish and slender
  • Improved sturdiness
  • Gorilla Glass Victus+ & Armour Aluminium

While 2020’s Galaxy S20 lineup was once a little bland to have a look at, remaining yr’s S21 collection introduced extra outlined and unique {hardware} to the desk (helped by means of an attention-grabbing ‘Phantom Violet’ end as the variability’s signature colourway). The S22 and S22+ firmly adapt the acquainted footprint left via 2021’s Galaxy S telephones, together with their recognisable ‘contour lower’ digicam bump.

Apple’s go back to slab-sided commercial design (to start with with 2020’s iPhone 12 collection) turns out to have rubbed off on its pageant too; leading to units like Vivo’s V23 and Oppo’s newest Reno 7 collection. The Galaxy S22+ (and S22) lands someplace between the kinds of the extra rounded S21 line and straight-edged iPhone 13, wearing a hybrid design that provides extra grip than the previous however is extra relaxed to seize than the latter.

Samsung Galaxy S22+ back angled

As neatly as shedding any rounding from the back and front glass (which must lend a hand higher forestall the display screen from cracking when touchdown on its facets), the S22+ additionally debuts a adapted model of Corning’s top-end Gorilla Glass Victus, fittingly referred to as Victus+ – the variations of which nonetheless have not formally been disclosed.

The polished body working the phone’s edge is – for the primary time on a Galaxy S phone – hewn from Armour Aluminium (or ‘Armor Aluminum’, for the ones Stateside), Samsung’s upgraded aluminium-based alloy, first noticed on 2021’s Galaxy Z Flip 3 and Z Fold 3 foldables. In Samsung’s phrases, it claims to be “the most powerful aluminum utilized in trendy smartphones.”

While I will most effective talk to the S22+’s obvious very good construct high quality in a reasonably inert state, the ones keen to topic their take a look at units to more difficult situations have showed Samsung’s claims; with the improved sturdiness promised via this new subject material selection proving extra than simply advertising and marketing spiel.

If you are willing to stay the phone’s end pristine, on the other hand, take a look at our rundown of the most efficient Samsung Galaxy S22+ circumstances you’ll purchase.

Samsung Galaxy S22+ frame

Despite reputedly harder development than its predecessor (paired with ongoing IP68-certified mud and water resistance), Samsung has additionally controlled to make this yr’s Plus each lighter and thinner than the Galaxy S21+ too.

Stylistically, the level to which the distinction between the polished steel body and the subtle glass again (simply as with remaining yr’s S collection) varies, is determined by the colourway you go for. The Pink Gold type maximum prominently pictured on this evaluate options a colour-matched body (as is the case with all the usual finishes), whilst the 4 Samsung.com-exclusive choices game contrasting body and glass therapies; together with a extra reserved riff on that signature Phantom Violet from remaining yr.

Samsung Galaxy S22+ Phantom Black


The Galaxy S22+ in Phantom Black

Likely as a approach of reflecting the S22 collection’ life as a refinement in their direct predecessors, this yr’s telephones are being served up with a extra muted palette and whilst much less attention-grabbing than a lot of the contest, the choices at the desk all really feel thought to be and must paintings with an array of kinds and aesthetics.

Display & audio

  • Smaller 6.6in panel, in comparison to predecessor
  • Beautiful 120Hz AMOLED visuals
  • Excellent out of doors brightness
  • Clear however flat stereo audio system

A marginally of post-launch controversy shed a little gentle on an obvious improve to the reveal at the S22+ (and base S22), in comparison to its predecessor – a trade which Samsung has since needed to step in and explain.

Despite what some respectable spec sheets nonetheless say, the S22 and S22+ each game excessive refresh fee presentations with a variable vary of 120Hz right down to 48Hz – similar to remaining yr’s fashions. Spec sheets claiming each telephones can drop to 10Hz are not technically unsuitable, however the panel used bottoms out at 48Hz.

Samsung Galaxy S22+ front

With that explanation out of the best way, the viewing revel in at the S22+ seems to be markedly very similar to that of remaining yr’s Plus type, albeit housed inside of a panel that is 0.1in smaller (at 6.6in). This new measurement in fact makes for a higher are compatible in-hand, with out compromising at the phone’s skills as a media gadget. Having bezels of a constant thickness working the reveal’s edges is a great visible contact too.

At this measurement, the nineteen.5:9 facet ratio makes one-handed use when the interface is at complete scale a little too difficult to drag off often and with ease, on the other hand, the instrument’s devoted one-handed mode is, fortunately, on-hand to make shifting across the interface with a unmarried mitt markedly more straightforward; activated with a easy swipe down from the ground of the reveal.

As for the visuals themselves, Samsung has lengthy presented up excellent displays on its Galaxy S telephones and that hasn’t modified with the S22 vary. The “Dynamic AMOLED 2X” panel at the Plus might most effective game Full HD+ answer (giving this phone the bottom pixel density amidst the trio of debut S22 telephones), nevertheless it nonetheless delivers a crisp symbol that are meant to satiate maximum customers.

The phone defaults to a ‘Vivid’ shade profile, which incorporates a shade temperature slider for fine-grain tweaking, on the other hand, there may be additionally a extra modest ‘Natural’ profile in case you are much less of a fan of Samsung’s choice in opposition to punchy visuals.

Samsung Galaxy S22+ Google apps

The display screen additionally helps a watch convenience protect to filter blue gentle within the evenings, the UI can transfer to darkish mode and the refresh fee may also be set to a fastened 60Hz or an ‘Adaptive’ variable mode (the default). Even if the panel does not achieve any new merit, in the case of energy potency via with the ability to drop as little as 10Hz – as was once as soon as purported – it nonetheless delivers nice super-smooth and responsive viewing, despite the fact that the 240Hz contact sampling fee (in Game Mode) is not somewhat as aggressive as some competitors.

While there may be little ‘new’ on be offering from the panel utilized by the S22+, it does boast a larger top brightness (1750nits) than its predecessor and that proved its value when in use in opposition to the wintry weather solar. Side via aspect with the Pixel 6 Pro, the variation is not somewhat evening and day, however the Galaxy was once the transparent winner; with the ability to ship a brighter symbol and higher colors, with out compromise.

The phone’s 7.6mm body does not depart room for a typical 3.5mm headphone jack however you’ll attach thru a USB-C adapter or the phone’s Bluetooth 5.2 connectivity if you want to cross wi-fi.

The S22+’s slender frame nonetheless manages to supply up stereo audio system, which game a excessive/low bias between the earpiece and down-firing grille, respectively. Meanwhile, the phone’s general output is apparent however a little flat.

Software & options

  • Great multitasking toolset
  • Superb long-term replace fortify
  • Debut of One UI 4.1 (atop Android 12)
  • Some reproduction apps out of field (that may be uninstalled/disabled)

While One UI 4 was once the primary iteration of Samsung’s cellular person revel in to capitalise at the additions that the underlying Android 12 replace delivered to the desk, the S22+ launches with the revised One UI 4.1 (once more, atop Android 12); entire with a lot of small however useful tweaks and upgrades.

If you are already acquainted with One UI, the feel and appear of the person revel in at the S22+ should not come as anything else of a surprise. You’ll to find acquainted icon designs and shade palettes, the Galaxy Store along the Google Play Store and menus – from the Quick Settings colour to the overall settings menu – that every one really feel distinctly other to inventory Android whilst final in line with one every other.

Samsung Galaxy S22+ Quick Settings

One UI is a feature-packed Android pores and skin that the majority new customers must nonetheless to find transparent and concise sufficient to navigate with out hassle. The out-of-box revel in is lovely intuitive however if you wish to dive deeper, there also are a wealth of choices to find that set it except for a extra inventory construct; some options being extra welcome than others.

You may have the Google Discover web page or Samsung’s personal ‘Free’ feed to the left of your own home display screen, there may be a devoted theme retailer that is filled with each first and third-party choices to immediately trade up the glance of your Galaxy’s interface, after which there are extras like Dual Messenger: letting you run two circumstances of the similar messaging app, tied to 2 other accounts, concurrently.

The long-standing Edge Panels make getting on your favorite apps (and contacts) simple from almost any place throughout the UI and with the ability to save split-screen configurations, in addition to launching apps in floating home windows with a easy drag-and-drop motion make for a nice multitasking revel in; in particular at the S22+’s nicely-sized display screen.

Samsung Galaxy S22+ One UI

One of essentially the most compelling issues about Samsung’s telephones at this time is the promise of instrument fortify that accompanies them. The corporate had already dedicated to turning in 3 years of OS updates and 4 years of safety updates to the vast majority of its newer telephones, however with the coming of the Galaxy S22 vary, it upped the stakes via promising an extra yr of each and every to flagship units; achieving again to hide a lot of 2021 handsets as neatly.

This transfer no longer most effective manner Samsung’s peak telephones out-perform Google in the case of long-term instrument fortify but in addition provides worth to units just like the S22+ in a space that the majority rival Android phone makers can not (or a minimum of do not) compete on.

Check out our Best Android phone chart for some profitable choices to the One UI-toting S22+, in case you are curious see what else is in the market.

Performance

  • One of the primary telephones to game a 4nm Exynos 2200/Snapdragon 8 Gen 1
  • Performance features no longer as giant as anticipated in comparison to S21+
  • Exynos Xclipse 920 first cellular GPU w/ ray tracing
  • Lacks graphical optimisation for some video games

While firms like Motorola and Xiaomi can have crushed Samsung to the punch via liberating telephones working on state of the art 4nm silicon forward of the S22 vary, this latest Galaxy collection is most probably essentially the most extensively to be had set of units to game such {hardware} and thus, for lots of, can be their first style of those new chips’ functions.

As ever, the marketplace you purchase your Galaxy S22 access in will impact which chipset is living at its core. Across the United Kingdom and Europe, you’ll be able to to find the Exynos 2200-powered variant (which is what I’ve been checking out), whilst customers in markets like the USA and in different places can be expecting the most recent Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 as an alternative.

Samsung Galaxy S22+ back angled

In real-world use, the S22+ does not in point of fact throw up any main surprises, which is typically a excellent factor. Performance is expectedly very good, with almost no lag, quick app load occasions and nil proceedings, on the subject of extra in depth movements, like multitasking; even the place video playback is worried.

However, in synthetic benchmarks, the Exynos 2200 does not seem to drag clear of its predecessor via all that a lot. Ahead of release, leaked benchmarks advised that this newest Exynos could be similar (or most effective marginally weaker) to the brand new Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 in terms of uncooked compute energy however the hole turns out a lot slimmer than expected, as opposed to remaining yr’s chip too.

Graphical efficiency seems to be relatively more potent, even though be aware that the low ratings for the Oppo Find X5 Pro and Pixel 6 Pro are distorted via their extra hard, larger answer presentations.

Numbers apart, the Xclipse 920 used here’s the primary cellular GPU to supply hardware-accelerated ray-tracing on cellular, one thing no longer conceivable on Galaxy S22 telephones with the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1.

The caveat is that, on the time of writing, no cellular video games overtly fortify ray-tracing and despite the fact that they did, Samsung is not going to instigate fortify for one variant of its newest flagship, whilst the opposite stays not able to leverage the generation.

When it involves gaming, the Exynos-powered S22+ had no downside working more than one rounds of hard titles, like Call of Duty: Mobile, with minimum warmth build-up, even after lengthy play periods. In the case of CoD particularly even though, regardless of the phone’s high-end specifications, most effective low-quality visible settings had been to be had from throughout the recreation’s menu.

Presumably a symptom of an obvious loss of optimisation for Samsung’s Xclipse GPU, this caveat hurts what must in a different way be a assured gaming phone, despite the fact that it is not somewhat in a position to compete with devoted units in spaces like excessive refresh and contact sampling charges. For purpose-made cellular gaming machines, take a look at our listing of the most efficient gaming smartphones lately to be had.

Battery

  • Smaller battery than S21+
  • Supports as much as 45W speedy charging
  • No energy adapter in-box

While a extra manageable reveal measurement and a thinner, extra chic design are welcome alterations between remaining yr’s and this yr’s Plus, the smaller footprint does additionally lead to a smaller battery, shifting from a 4800mAh cellular within the S21+ right down to a 4500mAh providing on this yr’s S22+.

In checking out, PCMark’s battery benchmark highlights the consequences of this capability relief (as noticed within the effects above), whilst real-world screen-on time ranged from round 5.5 to six hours of use consistent with price. The S22+’s battery existence is distinctly center of the street, that means maximum must be capable to use the phone for a day with out worry that it will drop useless sooner than bedtime.

Samsung Galaxy S22+ USB-C

To counter the battery capability relief, Samsung has a minimum of noticed are compatible to up the utmost charging pace at the S22+. Along with Wi-Fi 6E, one of the most different giant trickle-down options that the S22+ lords over the bottom S22 is the transfer from 25W to 45W, simply as at the S22 Ultra.

While Samsung does not provide a energy adapter in-box anymore, and I wasn’t in a position to check the respectable 45W charger (priced at £44/US$49.99), I examined the S22+ with a generic USB-C 65W PD charger, which refilled the battery to 18% in quarter-hour, 37% in part an hour, and was once absolutely charged in 90 mins flat.

Camera

  • Low gentle and selfie high quality want paintings
  • 10Mp central hole-punch selfie digicam
  • 50Mp major sensor w/ OIS, 12Mp ultrawide, 10Mp telephoto w/ OIS

Amidst the slew of anticipated upgrades and enhancements, possibly probably the most thrilling and intriguing adjustments to the S22+ is its digicam setup.

While the S20+ and S21+ each depended on a 12Mp major, 12Mp ultrawide, and a reasonably misleading 64Mp ‘telephoto’ sensor, Samsung has after all noticed are compatible to present this technology of Plus a true 3x optical zoom snapper, as an alternative. What’s extra, there may be a new 50Mp number one sensor doing lots of the heavy lifting, photographically talking.

Samsung Galaxy S22+ camera

As neatly as higher facilitating signature flagship options, like 24fps stabilised 8K video, the primary digicam gives higher dynamic vary and element from its pixel-binned 12Mp photographs, in comparison to the local 12Mp photographs captured via its predecessor.

Colours lift a signature Samsung ‘pop’ however the science used is extra nuanced and refined than earlier iterations of the emblem’s symbol processing, making for higher and extra aggressive effects in opposition to the likes of Google’s and Apple’s newest and largest; in herbal gentle a minimum of.

That mentioned, colors do seem to skew a little at the hotter aspect, with softness and grain additionally showing in darker spaces of body to an sudden (even if nonetheless applicable) level, for a phone of this calibre.

Samsung Galaxy S22+ camera viewfinder

As with maximum telephones that leverage pixel binning (combining the information of more than one pixels from a huge digicam sensor into a decrease answer ultimate symbol, whilst the use of the extra pixel knowledge to iron out problems like noise and shake), the S22+ does additionally provide the technique to shoot photographs on the major sensor’s local 50Mp answer, which is excellent for element however does have the possible to introduce higher record sizes, weaker post-processing and larger shutter lag.

One sensible addition to this mode that is incorporated around the entirety of the S22 vary, on the other hand, is Detail Enhancer: an harmless icon throughout the digicam app’s viewfinder that, when activated, pairs a local 50Mp shot with further symbol processing, very similar to how the phone handles pixel binning and HDR composition. The result’s an impressively high-detail shot that provides higher consistency with the primary digicam’s usual 12Mp output, in the case of shade, distinction, noise suppression and dynamic vary.

Samsung Galaxy S22+ camera test

As for the telephoto sensor, the transfer clear of hybrid zoom to true optical zoom at 3x magnification is welcome, despite the fact that, when evaluating the 2, the consequences from the brand new sensor do not be offering somewhat as drastic an growth as anticipated. Generally, be expecting larger element and sharpness, paired with higher-contrast effects than an identical telephoto photographs from the S21 or S21+.

Unfortunately, low gentle and evening mode effects proved in particular disappointing at the S22+, with a ways much less element and sharpness in comparison to the former technology of Galaxy S telephones.

There’s additionally a level of shade inconsistency between the sensors (see the digicam pattern with the orange coat during the ultrawide and the primary for a nice instance) that wasn’t provide on remaining yr’s S fashions.

Colour, distinction and dynamic vary had been additionally missing when capturing selfies, despite the fact that the underlying 10Mp front-facing digicam {hardware} does not seem to be any other to remaining technology’s providing.

Hopefully, those shortcomings may also be patched in a next instrument replace, however at release, they are approach in the back of the place they must be, according to the bar Samsung’s already set itself, to not point out the contest.

Price & availability

In maximum markets, (as of 25 February) the Galaxy S22+ is on sale now, each direct from Samsung’s personal web page (US, UK, Spain, France) in addition to different outlets, together with Best Buy within the States and Amazon in more than one markets (US, UK, Spain, France). However, enthusiasts in some areas, together with the United Kingdom, should wait a little longer for each the S22 and S22+, which can arrive in shops on 11 March.

The S22+ maintains its predecessor’s pricing (a minimum of in the USA and UK), beginning at £949/$999 for the bottom 128GB garage SKU and shifting as much as £999/$1,049 for the 256GB variant. European pricing is marginally larger than remaining yr, coming in at €1,079 and €1,149 for the 2 garage SKUs, respectively.

While that 6.6in reveal is arguably the sweet-spot of the variability, in particular for the ones liable to taking part in media at the cross with out short of a true ‘phablet’ of their bag/pocket, as with remaining yr’s S21 vary, there may be a not-insignificant value hike when shifting from the bottom S22 (which begins at £769/$799/€879) as much as the S22+. Whether the Plus’s higher reveal and battery, Wi-Fi 6E and UWB fortify justify the extra £180/$200/€200 in point of fact comes down on your wishes and your pockets.

When it involves pricing, essentially the most clearly fly within the S22+’s ointment is Apple’s iPhone 13 Pro, which prices the similar and but delivers awesome cameras, battery existence and function. What’s extra, relying in the marketplace you are in, there also are Android-based contenders, like Oppo’s 8 Gen 1-powered Find X5 Pro, which is the most efficient the corporate gives at this time and most effective prices a fraction greater than the center little one of the S22 circle of relatives.

Check out the place to shop for the Samsung Galaxy S22 collection for extra on the most efficient offers on a Galaxy S22 software, together with the S22+.

Verdict

When it involves construction flagship telephones, some issues come without problems to Samsung: killer presentations, chic design paired with excellent construct high quality, and intuitive, feature-packed instrument. As such, you recognize you are no longer going to be let down whilst you pick out up a Galaxy S phone.

As highlighted via the likes of the ill-fated Galaxy Note 7 and, to a lesser extent, the digicam device at the Galaxy S20 Ultra, the South Korean corporate does not at all times get issues somewhat proper, on the other hand, and the S22+ certainly has its cracks.

Battery existence is okay, nevertheless it lags in the back of the contest, whilst the promise of advanced speedy charging fails to ship any significant receive advantages to customers.

The new digicam device obviously has possible too, however imaging problems already addressed on remaining yr’s S collection appear to have inexplicably re-emerged at the S22+, highlighting areas of difficulty that customers should not have to take care of on a software at this value level.

The silver lining is Samsung’s method to instrument, each in its promise of Google-beating long-term OS and safety updates that stretch the lifespan of units just like the Galaxy S22+ past any in their Android-based competition and the corporate’s willingness to deal with and strengthen its units in a clear and well timed type.

Head over to our Best Samsung Galaxy telephones chart to look the place we predict the S22+ slots in amidst the corporate’s present lineup.

Specs

Samsung Galaxy S22+: Specs

  • 6.6in Full HD+ Dynamic AMOLED 2X 48Hz-120Hz HDR10+ reveal
  • Ultrasonic in-display fingerprint sensor
  • Gorilla Glass Victus+ (entrance & again)
  • Armour Aluminium body
  • 4nm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1/Samsung Exynos 2200 SoC (marketplace dependant)
  • 8GB RAM
  • 128GB or 256GB non-expandable garage
  • 50Mp major digicam w/ OIS
  • 12Mp ultrawide digicam
  • 10Mp 3x optical zoom telephoto digicam w/ OIS (as much as 30x ‘Space Zoom’)
  • 10Mp front-facing digicam
  • Stereo audio system
  • Android 12 w/ One UI 4.1
  • Samsung DeX fortify
  • IP68 mud/water resistance
  • NFC
  • 5G
  • WiFi 6E
  • UWB
  • Bluetooth 5.2
  • 4500mAh battery
  • 45W speedy charging (USB-IF compliant)
  • 15W wi-fi charging
  • Reverse wi-fi charging
  • 75.8mm x 157.4mm x 7.6mm
  • 196 grams
  • Launch colors: Phantom Black, Phantom White, Green, Pink Gold
  • Samsung.com-exclusive colors: Graphite, Cream, Sky Blue, Violet



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