Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus review: Design and aesthetics
The Galaxy S22 Plus feels familiar the moment you take the phone out of the box. Whatever experience you have had with Samsung’s top-end phones in the past, I like the clean and elegant design of the Galaxy S22 Plus. It has the same cornered camera bump and shiny metal frame, but there are some subtle changes. The phone’s rear is now made of glass, a step-up from a ‘glastic’ back seen on the Galaxy S21.The back has a matte finish and feels great. (Image credit: Anuj Bhatia/Indian Express)
The back glass has a matte finish and is no longer curved. The phone looks breathtaking in black and feels great to hold. The ‘metal frame’ is a bit flat and has a curve to it. Trust me, those flat edges are way easier to grip than the Galaxy S22 Ultra’s curved sides. I also liked how the bezels around the screen are perfectly uniform. Other than that, the phone has an IP68 rating for dust- and water resistance, meaning it can survive being submerged 6 meters (about 20 feet) for up to 30 minutes.https://images.indianexpress.com/2020/08/1x1.png
Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus review: Display and audio
The Galaxy S22 Plus’s 6.6-inch screen is crisp and vibrant, despite a Full HD (1080p) resolution. It has a refresh rate of 12oHz, which makes it smoother when scrolling your Twitter feed, reading news articles on indianexpress.com or playing games such as Alto’s Odyssey. The refresh rate is adaptive and the screen fluctuates between 48Hz and 120Hz depending on what is displayed. Colours popped up when watching Wonder Woman 1984 on the Galaxy S22 Plus, and I was able to see fine details that otherwise get missed on a screen of this size. A Quad HD screen would have been nice, but what Samsung has given is not bad in any way.The Galaxy S22 Plus’s screen is good for everyday use. (Image credit: Anuj Bhatia/Indian Express)
I liked the hole-punch screen on the S22 Plus as it avoids big bezels and notches. The S22 Plus’s flat-screen looks modern and contemporary. The ultrasonic fingerprint scanner that Samsung uses is the best in the business; it’s fast, accurate and consistent.Thanks to the hole-punch screen, the Galaxy S22 Plus avoids a notch or big bezels. (Image credit: Anuj Bhatia/Indian Express)
The stereo speakers are good for smartphone speakers in terms of audio output and volume. It doesn’t match the level of the iPhone 13, but the audio balance is strong. I liked the clarity of vocals when listening to Cold Heart by Elton John and Dua Lipa. The speakers are fine for watching a movie or a YouTube video on the go, without the need to pair your wireless headphones.
Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus review: Performance and battery
Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8 Gen 1, the chip that powers this phone, is a beast. It’s obvious from the minute you start using the phone, because apps open instantly and games load in seconds. I was able to switch between multiple apps while listening to Apple Music without any stutter. I was also able to play graphic-intensive games such as Call of Duty: Mobile without any issue, though the phone did get hot after a long session. But I must also tell you that while the S22 Plus is great for multitasking and running top-notch games, I didn’t feel the performance of the phone was drastically improved from last year’s model, which shipped with an Exynos processor in India. That said, the Galaxy S22 Plus is one of the fastest Android smartphones you can buy on the market. The unit Samsung loaned me for review came with 8GB RAM and 128GB of non-expandable storage. This model costs Rs 84,999, but another variant with 256GB storage is also available and that will cost you Rs 88,999.Also read|Apple iPhone 13 Pro Max review: Promising a lot for the Pros The Galaxy S22 Plus (left) next to the Galaxy S22 (right). (Image credit: Anuj Bhatia/Indian Express)
The phone ships with One UI 4, which is based on Android 12. This is a customised version of Android, so some people may or may not like it. I wasn’t a fan of OneUI but lately I kind of like the feel of the interface. OneUI 4 is impressive , and has all the benefits of Android 12. One of the things that I like about OneUI 4 is how I can tweak the interface and customise it the way I want it to look. And yes, Samsung’s commitment to supporting the Galaxy S22 Plus software for four years after the launch and five years of security updates is a major step in the right direction. Samsung’s biggest rival in the high-end smartphone space, Apple already provides software updates for phones longer than any other smartphone manufacturer.Samsung’s custom UI on top of Android 12 has been improved. (Image credit: Anuj Bhatia/Indian Express)
The battery life on this phone is excellent. On average, I got roughly two days of battery backup with casual use, which includes a bit of music listening, playing games, browsing the web and taking photos. And when used as a pro, the phone’s 4500mAh battery lasted between 12 and 13 hours before it drained completely. If it is because of the Snapdragon chip inside the phone, I am seriously impressed. The device supports 45w of wired charging and 15W of wireless charging. You will need to buy your own power brick since you won’t get on in the box. This is the new reality in the smartphone world. The Galaxy S22 Plus also supports 5G (via both mmWave and Sub-6Ghz) which makes it future-proof, but for now, it makes no difference in the lives of people if you happen to live in India.Also read|Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G review: Familiar phone, but more powerful too
Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus review: Camera and video recording
For me, the main reason to get excited about the Galaxy S22 Plus is the camera. It’s not that I have never liked the cameras on the Galaxy S series; but for the first time, a Galaxy S phone really impressed me on the camera front.
On the back are three cameras: a 50-megapixel main shooter, a 12-megapixel ultra-wide camera for wider shots and a 10-megapixel telephoto lens for zooming in. To test out the cameras in the open, I went to a park that has a semi-jungle vibe in the midst of the hustle-bustle of Delhi. Over the course of a few days, I went to the park twice – one in the morning and the second time in the late afternoon to check the camera prowess of the Galaxy S22 Plus.Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus camera sample. (Image resized for web) Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus camera sample. (Image resized for web) Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus camera sample. (Image resized for web) Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus camera sample. (Image resized for web) Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus camera sample. (Image resized for web) Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus camera sample. (Image resized for web) Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus camera sample. (Image resized for web) Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus camera sample. (Image resized for web) Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus camera sample. (Image resized for web) Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus camera sample. (Image resized for web) Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus camera sample. (Image resized for web)
The photos look great. They are sharp and well-balanced in high-contrast scenes. I was able to capture the exact shot I had in mind when I reached the park early in the morning. As you can see, the pictures have a neutral tone to them and are less oversaturated compared to Samsung’s previous phones. Autofocus is fast and switching between different cameras is a breeze. The Galaxy S22 Plus’s camera was also able to capture earthy and natural textures, and that to me was a surprise.
The phone’s ultrawide mode did a better job than the ultra-wide lens seen on many recently released premium smartphones. I won’t say the edge sharpness is good as the regular wide camera but it is able to capture finer details. The Galaxy S22 Plus’s telephoto lens and its ability to capture 3x zoom and 30x digital zoom photos is bliss. I don’t know about other people, I do like to capture faraway objects using a smartphone and an extra zoom capability comes handy when I am surrounded by nature, lush trees and birds. The 30x zoom feature is hit-and-miss, but the 3x zoom just works beautifully.
The Galaxy S22 Plus’s portrait mode impressed me, as it produced just the right blur to make the picture as good as a professional one. The photos I captured of a pug in the park impressed me and they are worth sharing on Instagram with no edits.It has the same cornered camera bump and shiny metal frame, but there are some subtle changes. (Image credit: Anuj Bhatia/Indian Express)
Low light performance is greatly improved on the Galaxy S22 Plus and the camera samples are the proof. The 10-megapixel selfie camera is a mixed bag. I found the selfies came out dull and less lively. However, my portrait mode selfies were still better.
Sure, the iPhone 13 Pro Max is miles ahead in capturing videos but the Galaxy S22 Plus is also great, offering the ability to record at up to 8K. I mostly stuck with 1080p and on some occasions, I captured videos in 4K/60 frames per second.
Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus review: Should you buy it?
It is a fact that brands keep pushing users to buy new smartphones every year. Upgrading to a new phone price upwards of Rs 80,000 is not easy, but I also know people who are ready to pay that much cash for a new Samsung Galaxy S smartphone. The Galaxy S22 Plus is one such Android smartphone that offers two meaningful upgrades that are hard to ignore: longer battery life and a better camera. When you consider the premium price and the value you are getting along with the promise of over four years of software updates, the Galaxy S22 Plus becomes one of the best high-end Android smartphones to buy right now.