Best Samsung Galaxy S20+ Full Review: Are’Space Zoom’ and 8K recording sufficient to warrant an incredibly high cost?
Samsung’s bouquet of premium Android smartphones this season looks promising. We have the S20 series for photography enthusiasts, as well as the Galaxy Z Flip for those looking for the bleeding edge of smartphone technology.
We have not even counted the next Galaxy Note smartphone, which should come later in the year, and will without doubt have unique features to brag about also.
The huge attention on your new Galaxy S20 series this year are the cameras. Samsung is creating a lot of noise about its new’Space Zoom’ feature and also the fact that the S20 models will be the first to offer 8K video recording in a useful framerate.
The phones seemed quite impressive when we saw them in Samsung’s Unpacked occasion every month, and today it is time to have a closer and longer comprehensive look, beginning with the Galaxy S20+. (Best Samsung Galaxy S20+ Full Review)
This is the direct successor to the Galaxy S10+ INR 57,999 and enjoy with each iteration, we ought to expect a sleeker layout, better battery life, improved camera functionality, and of course, a more powerful chip.
Priced at INR 73,999 at India for the only 128GB variant, is the Galaxy S20+ INR 77,999 worthwhile? Let’s take a peek.
The Galaxy S20+ is immediately recognisable as a Samsung smartphone.
The top and lower bezels of this display are thinner, and the glass back has a wider curve at the sides, covering more of this aluminium frame. This phone is still very comfortable to hold but the glossy end does make it very slippery.
It’s not too thick at 7.8mm, but it is slightly heavier than its predecessor at 186g. The slim screen borders and marginally taller body have enabled Samsung to utilize a much bigger screen. (Best Samsung Galaxy S20+ Full Review)
The Galaxy S20+ features a 6.7-inch QHD+ Dynamic AMOLED 2X panel, together with support for HDR 10+ also, for the first time, a 120Hz refresh rate. However, you can not have the 120Hz refresh rate at the full resolution, at least not yet.
There have been rumours about Samsung planning on allowing this with a software upgrade later on. The Galaxy S20+ sheds the secondary selfie camera the Galaxy S10+ needed, and instead there is a single, centre-mounted hole-punch cutout.
It is not obtrusive in any way, and programs generally block out this area, so the cutout doesn’t interfere with menus or other UI elements from fullscreen programs.
Alternatively, you may customise the long-press function of the power button to either wake Bixby or launch the power menu. A double-press action can also be set to launch the camera, open Bixby, or any other program.
The SIM tray is on the top of the telephone and can either house two Nano-SIMs or a single SIM and a microSD card. In the base of the phone, Samsung gets rid of the headphone socket because of its flagships because the Galaxy Notice 10 INR 73,600, and so here, we just have the mike, USB Type-C port, and a speaker.
There is an earpiece just above the camera hole, cleverly camouflaged involving the outside frame and screen, which makes it almost impossible to see. (Best Samsung Galaxy S20+ Full Review)
We’ve Got the Cosmic Gray colour variant of the Galaxy S20+, however, it’s also available in May Blue and Cosmic Black trims in India. There is a rectangular camera bump on the rear, which houses four camera sensors, a microphone, and the LED flash.
The design of the camera bunch reminds us a lot of a few of the current Galaxy A-series offerings we have seen, which we believe dilutes the Galaxy S20 series’ road presence a bit. (Best Samsung Galaxy S20+ Full Review)
We would have enjoyed a more distinctive design for the rear of the phone, much like what Apple did with all the iPhone 11 INR 68,300 series, simply to present its flagships better showcase worth.
With that said, the Galaxy S20+ feels far more premium than any one of Samsung’s mid-range phones, after you truly hold it.
It’s extremely well built, has a greater screen-to-body ratio, and remains rather mild. In the box, you can expect to locate a 25W quick charger, a Type-C to Type-C charging cable, a AKG-branded headset, a silicone case, and the usual leaflets.
The Galaxy S20+ ships with a screen guard which for once is nicely applied and not intrusive when performing gestures.
Samsung Galaxy S20+ specifications and applications
Globally, Samsung is advertising the S20 show as 5G smartphones, but in India, the entire S20 series will only encourage 4G.
The 5G version of the Galaxy S20+ comes from several storage versions but the LTE-only edition, which we have, is sold in just 1 configuration with 8GB of RAM along with 128GB of storage.
The latter is expandable, which is something we do not see too often nowadays on flagship mobiles. Samsung has also used LPDDR5 memory , which guarantees higher data speeds and lower energy consumption.
Like most preceding Galaxy S flagships offered in India, the Galaxy S20+ is powered by an Exynos chip as opposed to a Qualcomm Snapdragon chip, and also the one used here is the Exynos 990. (Best Samsung Galaxy S20+ Full Review)
Graphics is handled by the Mali-G77 GPU, which claims to offer a 20 percent increase in performance over the last generation. In general, we should expect functionality over the lines of Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 865 SoC.
The Galaxy S20+ runs One UI 2.1 which is based on Android 10, and our unit initially shipped using the February security limitation. But, we obtained a software update, during our review with the March security patch.
The newest version of Samsung’s Android skin feels incredibly elegant, and even though there are a tonne of features to research, it does not feel cluttered or overwhelming.
Characteristics like Samsung Dex and Link to Windows are present, and you get the normal Samsung staples such as a built-in display recorder, a screenshot editor, Edge screen, and a highly customisable always-on-display.
Augmented reality (AR) attributes are all grouped together in an app known as AR Zone, and therefore you don’t have to launch the camera program just to use features like AR Doodle.
One UI will show you promotional messages notifications but this may be fixed by simply disabling a few toggles in the Privacy menu of this Preferences program.
One UI has actually grown on us, and now it is easily one of our favourite Android skins. The 120Hz screen makes scrolling through menus feel snappy and gives the overall utilization experience a more fluid feel.
However, we preferred using the Galaxy S20+ at the QHD+ resolution only for that excess bit of sharpness at the UI, but that is just us.
It is a little surprising that 120Hz isn’t allowed by default (which ought to have been the case), as we suspect many users may not discover that this option exists. (Best Samsung Galaxy S20+ Full Review)
The Exynos 990 is a good performer, and the benchmarks solidify our experience. In AnTuTu, we now got a score of 5,17,291 points, although the 3DMark Slingshot Extreme graphics evaluation returned 6,721 points.
These numbers were slightly lower compared to the scores we got in the Realme X50 Pro 5G (5,69,618 at AnTuTu and 7,202 in 3DMark). In any case, you’d be hard-pressed to observe some difference in real-world performance as well as games.
The display is easily one of the best we’ve come across. Colours are loaded with quite great saturation, and brightness is more than adequate.
The ambient light sensor may be a little sluggish at times, in regards to adjusting brightness to match ambient light, but this isn’t a significant complaint. HDR content looks great, and as a result of this slimmer bezels, seeing videos felt very immersive.
Audio quality from the stereo speakers has been quite impressive also. The earpiece and the bottom-firing speaker seemed well balanced, and with Dolby Atmos empowered, the spatial separation was audibly better.
Bass is still a little weak but there is enough heat in the sound to prevent it from seeming tinny. The bundled AKG provides both superior sound as well as passive isolation from ambient sound. (Best Samsung Galaxy S20+ Full Review)
All this does require a toll on battery life, and that’s why Samsung has bumped up the capability to 4,500mAh for the Galaxy S20+. It is safe to say that battery life is really solid, but not exceptional.
We could get a 24-hour runtime on many days, when our use was not very heavy. Thankfully, it does not take long to charge the Galaxy S20+.
Together with the bundled 25W adapter, we managed to charge the battery up to 55 per cent in half an hour up to 93 percent in an hour. Additionally, it supports Quick Wireless Charging 2.0, if you have a compatible 10W or higher wireless charger.
Like before, the Galaxy S20+ also supports Wireless PowerShare or reverse wireless charging, which can be utilized to charge accessories like the Galaxy Buds+.
Samsung Galaxy S20+ cameras
The Samsung Galaxy S20+ has a brand-new camera setup with among those highlight attributes being 8K video recording as well as 30x hybrid.
The main sensor still has a 12-megapixel resolution using Dual Pixel autofocus, an f/1.8 aperture, and OIS, but the pixel dimensions is now 1.8 microns compared to 1.4 microns on the previous version.
The telephoto camera gets the largest change, using a 64-megapixel sensor but no optical stabilisation. The’Plus’ version that we’ve has a thickness vision camera that’s absent from the typical Galaxy S20. (Best Samsung Galaxy S20+ Full Review)
Yet another change, which you’ve probably noticed, is that Samsung has ditched its changeable aperture system using the Galaxy S20 collection, for worse or better.
The camera interface feels familiar if you’ve used any recent Samsung phone. We have a customisable row of shooting modes only above the shutter button, while the remaining settings like the aspect ratio, timer and toggle formation photograph’ sit on the side of the viewfinder.
The app offers toggles to permit the Scene Optimiser, which finds a spectacle in the frame. Shot Suggestion will offer tips to improve your framing, and you will find experimental features such as HDR 10+ movie, which is enabled.
Initial reviews of this Galaxy S20 Ultra INR 97,999 highlighted some huge problems with the autofocus system, which Samsung has promised to fix.
While we didn’t face any such issues with the Galaxy S20+ while we were analyzing it, we obtained a software upgrade which guaranteed improvements to the cameras. We re-tested the cameras and did not discover anything new or different about the use experience, but we did note that low-light selfies seemed to have gotten better. (Best Samsung Galaxy S20+ Full Review)
When shooting the most important camera under good light, the Galaxy S20+ captured quite good details with pleasing colours and no visible noise in the shadow regions. HDR is treated quite nicely, even when shooting areas directly contrary to the light.
Together with the wide-angle camera, there’s a great deal more of any landscape to catch, however, you do get any barrel distortion. Close-up shots also turned out fantastic, with exceptional detail, sharpness and great all-natural bokeh.
The really interesting part is your phone’s brand new zoom system. The telephoto camera provides 2x optical zoom, and beyond that, it uses a mix of AI-assisted hybrid and digital zoom.
You can directly jump to certain zoom levels with dedicated buttons that look as soon as you tap the telephoto icon at the viewfinder. It’s possible to manually zoom in to a precise point as well, using the traditional pinch gesture.
Photographs taken with all the telephoto camera were great, given ample light. During our initial testing, we discovered picture quality inconsistently, but observing the software update, things appear to have gotten better. After the 10x zoom degree, textures on objects look visibly smoothened as grain and sound are eliminated. (Best Samsung Galaxy S20+ Full Review)
In the full 30x zoom, the Galaxy S20+ is able to resolve a decent amount of detail. In comparison to cropping a native 64-megapixel sample, the exact same picture with a 30x zoom offers better clarity. Beyond 20x, you get just a little preview window at the upper left corner of the viewfinder to help you frame your photo.
In low light, using elevated levels of zoom does not yield quite favourable results. However, using Night style with 10x zoom can offer vastly superior results than a typical shot with the same zoom level.
Talking of Night mode, this works across all three chief sensors and helps get rid of grain and enhances exposures. Low-light performance generally is quite good also.
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We managed to get some good details and colors with the principal camera, and the sound was treated well too. Live Focus manner functions well, and we had a fantastic success rate with individuals, but objects were a bit of a hit or miss.
The background depth effect can be adjusted before or after you take a snapshot, and you can even apply different bokeh consequences. Edge detection was also handled well.
With this, the camera captures a 10-second movie along with stills at different intervals, and according to what’s being taken, it will automatically employ filters into some of the shots. This is most effective once you’re shooting an activity, instead of a still scene.
The Galaxy S20+ is a really capable smartphone for the movie also. The highlight, of course, is 8K movie, which functions nicely, but you’ll need an 8K display or TV to really make the most of this footage. (Best Samsung Galaxy S20+ Full Review)
It’s great that we’ve got a phone that could record at this particular resolution, but because the frame rate is limited to 24fps, we found it easier to just stick with 4K video. (Best Samsung Galaxy S20+ Full Review)
Image quality is very good in daylight, with excellent stabilisation and details. In low light, the stabilisation causes a bit of a wobble effect in the movie, but aside from this, the quality is great. (Best Samsung Galaxy S20+ Full Review)
You can switch between each of the cameras, for example, selfie camera, even when shooting up at to 4K resolution at 30fps. Video quality isn’t very good when shooting with the wide-angle or telephoto cameras at low light.
There’s the Super Steady video style too, which is assumed to provide gimbal-level smoothness. While it does work to an extent, we selected that the quality while using the key camera for a couple of reasons.
In Super Steady mode, only the wide-angle or telephoto cameras (depending on the view you select) are utilized, and the resolution is limited to 1080p.
Super slow-motion mode is present too, but at 960fps, you are still confined to a 720p resolution. Coming to the selfie camera, we’ve got a 10-megapixel sensor with Dual Pixel AF and also an f/2.2 aperture.
Throughout the day, the beautification filter that’s on by default smoothens skin functions quite heavily, making photos look unnatural. Switching it off enhances results substantially. Live Focus is also a bit of a hit or miss, with incorrect edge detection.
The Galaxy S20+ may seem very expensive, but Samsung has really priced it the same as the Galaxy S10+, even when it launched a year ago.
From this perspective, the Galaxy S20+ offers improved design and functionality across the board, making it a worthy update. A number of its stand-out features include the new zoom system for the rear cameras, the excellent screen, solid battery life, and a sleek design.
Other items like inverse wireless charging, the stereo speakers, and the lean software make this a very good package to take into account.
However, this phone does have its share of weakness, like the fact that it becomes very hot when playing heavy games for extended periods of time, and face recognition doesn’t work very well in low light.
The plan of the back can be a bit dull for a flagship telephone in 2020. Battery life, while good, could have been better, and fast charging is not as fast as some of the alternatives we have seen from different producers. (Best Samsung Galaxy S20+ Full Review)
As soon as it’s not a big loss if you are only going to be using your phone in India, it could be a deal-breaker for those who travel a lot or who wish to hold on to their pricey purchases for several years.
Both Realme and iQoo have established 5G devices in India for a good deal less, making the Indian Galaxy S20+ look less future-proof.
Overall, the Galaxy S20+ is still a great flagship that provides excellent all-round functionality, top-of-the-line characteristics, and needless to say, brand worth.
Premium construction quality
Very good rear cameras
Great program and gaming performance
Day-long battery lifetime
Heats up under load
Processor: Samsung Exynos 990
Front Camera: 10-megapixel
Rear Camera: 12-megapixel + 64-megapixel + 12-megapixel
Battery Capacity: 4500mAh
OS: Android 10
Resolution: 1440×3200 pixels