Samsung’s Galaxy S24, S24 Plus and S24 Ultra are expected to launch tomorrow loaded with new AI-powered features. Samsung’s Galaxy Unpacked event will take place Jan. 17, which means new devices will likely be released shortly thereafter.
Just days ahead of Samsung’s Galaxy Unpacked event, the International Data Corporation shared that, for the first time ever, Apple shipped more phones than Samsung in the previous year. IDC’s preliminary data indicates that in 2023 Apple shipped 234.6 million phones compared with Samsung, which shipped 226.6 million. The last time Samsung wasn’t the leader in phone shipments was 2010. This kind of role-reversal between Apple and Samsung adds more importance to Wednesday’s event and the launch of the Galaxy S24 series.
Samsung faces huge competition from the iPhone 15 and 15 Pro, which feature a range of upgrades, from new camera systems to fancy titanium bodies on the Pro models. Then there’s Google’s Pixel 8 and 8 Pro, which include new AI photo editing tools among other fresh upgrades.
But Samsung’s phones are always powerhouses, and we’re super excited to see what the mobile giant will come up with. We’ve sifted through the rumor mill to try to figure out just what Samsung’s next superphones will offer, when they’ll be announced and how much they might cost.
All rumors should be taken with a pinch of salt. And they’re unlikely to stop rolling in, so we’ll keep this article updated as we hear more.
When will the Samsung Galaxy S24 launch?
Although Samsung’s January launch is slightly earlier than its typical February time frame, it doesn’t come as much of a surprise since Korean news outlets SBS Biz and The Elec previously reported that announcement date.
How much will the Galaxy S24 cost?
There aren’t any firm details on pricing, but we don’t expect any significant changes from the S23 lineup. For reference, the base S23 model starts at $800, the Plus at $1,000 and the Ultra at $1,200. The Galaxy S lineup has different models for people shopping on different budgets and it’s a tactic Samsung has used for most generations of its phones.
What will be the biggest new feature in the Galaxy S24 series?
We won’t know for sure until Samsung announces the Galaxy S24 lineup. But considering the company is already teasing its new AI technologies, we can likely expect new AI-powered features to be a major focus in the Galaxy S24.
Samsung recently announced Galaxy AI, which it describes as an “AI experience” for phones coming early in 2024. The company hasn’t said much about what Galaxy AI will entail, but did provide one example: translating phone calls. Galaxy AI will make it possible to translate audio and text between languages from the native phone app in real time, according to the company’s press release.
AI will also likely play a big role in the Galaxy S24’s camera, especially for the S24 Ultra. A well-known leaker who goes by the alias Ice Universe on X (formerly Twitter) says the 200-megapixel camera mode will use AI to identify up to a dozen types of objects and optimize the shot accordingly. This feature would likely be exclusive to the Ultra model, since that’s the only phone in Samsung’s current lineup with a 200-megapixel sensor.
Samsung also revealed its own generative AI model called Gauss in November, which consists of three parts: Gauss Language, Gauss Code and Gauss Image. The language portion was designed for tasks like summarizing documents and translation, while Gauss Image is for modifying and generating images.
Given these announcements, it’s hard to imagine Galaxy AI and Gauss not playing a large role in the Galaxy S24 family.
Will there be multiple Galaxy S24 versions?
Almost certainly, yes. As mentioned, the multiple models strategy is one that Samsung has used for some time, and all current rumors suggest the company will launch at least two versions of the S24: a base model and an Ultra version. Some industry analysts have suggested that the Plus model might be scrapped to create more separation between the base and Ultra, but other sources disagree.
What about the Galaxy S24 series design and display?
Tipster Tech Reve suggests Samsung will be sticking to much the same design, at least for the base S24 and S24 Plus. Both phones are expected to maintain the floating camera lenses, rather than the solid camera unit seen on the earlier S22 and S22 Plus.
The S24 Ultra may get some more-noticeable tweaks, including fewer camera lenses visible on the back. Tech_Reve predicts that the S24 Ultra will lose the 3x camera lens, which will mean fewer lenses in the camera cluster. Well-known leaker Evan Blass recently shared what are said to be renderings and specifications for the Galaxy S24 lineup, and the image of the S24 Ultra’s camera arrangement looks about identical to the Galaxy S23 Ultra’s.
Other rumors, such as this report from The Elec, suggest the Ultra model will be made with a titanium frame, but whether that’s visually noticeable remains to be seen. The report says Samsung will start with the Ultra, but may consider expanding the use of titanium to other models in the future. This would notably come after Apple brought titanium finishes to the iPhone lineup with the iPhone 15 Pro and 15 Pro Max in September.
Most rumors suggest that the display sizes will remain pretty much the same as last year, meaning we expect a 6.1-inch base Galaxy S24, a 6.6-inch S24 Plus and a 6.8-inch S24 Ultra. But the leak from Blass suggests that the S24 and S24 Plus will have slightly larger screens at 6.2 inches and 6.7 inches respectively.
And the Galaxy S24 series cameras?
Based on the rumors and leaks that have surfaced so far, it sounds like the Galaxy S24 lineup will have similar hardware as the Galaxy S23 family, but with some changes to zoom quality.
Some earlier reports said we’ll see a much larger main camera sensor, while other more recent rumors suggest the camera specs will remain essentially the same. The latter rumors come chiefly from known leaker Ice Universe, a source with an excellent track record, so the talk of a bigger main camera sensor is arguably less exciting.
That’s a shame, because the S23 Ultra’s cameras haven’t really changed that much for a few generations, while competition from both Apple and Google has remained fierce. A larger camera sensor could make a significant difference in improving image quality. That said, Ice Universe has also suggested that the S24 Ultra’s 3x zoom may get a resolution bump up to 50 megapixels.
More recent rumors from Ice Universe also suggest that Samsung may even go as far as ditching the 10x optical zoom from the Ultra and reducing it down to 5x. On the surface that might seem like a downgrade, but 5x zooms are generally a lot more usable in everyday scenarios, with the 10x lens being useful only on rare occasions photographing distant objects. A high-quality 5x zoom would compete more evenly with the 5x zooms found on both the Pixel 7 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max. An even more recent leak from Ice Universe also suggests the phones’ night mode will get an upgrade too.
The spec sheet from Blass, who has a solid history of reporting on phone leaks, indicates the S24 Ultra will have a 200-megapixel main camera like the S23 Ultra, but with an additional 5x telephoto option alongside the existing 2x, 3x, 10x choices and 100x “space zoom.” The S24 and S24 Plus would have a 50-megapixel sensor like their predecessors along with 2x and 3x telephoto options, the reportedly leaked spec sheet says.
How about the Galaxy S24 series’ specs?
Though it’s almost certain some S24 models will use the upcoming Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 processor, a report from Pocket-lint suggests Samsung may revert to using its own Exynos chips in certain regions. Blass’ leak indeed suggests that the S24 lineup will run on the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3.
In earlier generations, including the S22 line, Samsung used Qualcomm chips in some regions (including the US) but opted for its own Exynos processors in other areas (including the UK). The reasoning wasn’t always clear, but it was notable that the S23 line used Qualcomm silicon in all regions, with no hint of Exynos.
The Galaxy S24 Ultra is expected to have 12GB of RAM just like the S23 Ultra, while the S24 Plus will reportedly get a bump from 8GB to 12GB, according to the spec sheet from Blass. The base Galaxy S24 is said to have 8GB of RAM like the S23. A previous leak from X user Tarun Vats suggested the standard S24 and S24 Plus could get a bump up to 12GB of RAM, with the Ultra going up to 16GB.
But perhaps what’s more interesting is the possibility of longer battery life for the Galaxy S24 and S24 Plus. If the leaked specs from Blass are correct, the Galaxy S24 will have a 4,000 mAh battery, while the S24 Plus will have a 4,900 mAh battery. That’s compared to the Galaxy S23’s 3,900 mAh battery and the S23 Plus’ 4,700 mAh battery. The S24 Ultra, meanwhile, is rumored to have the same 5,000 mAh battery as the Galaxy S23 Ultra.
We expect Samsung to stick with the S Pen stylus in the S24 Ultra, as well as introduce a new range of colors throughout the whole series. We’d love to see a return to expandable storage (but that won’t happen), and you can expect features like IP68 water resistance, in-screen fingerprint scanners and high refresh rate displays on all models.