Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra Review: How good is it?

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Verdict

It’southward not inexpensive, but the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra is a huge phone with a huge spec list. Most of it works fantastically well and those that bemoaned the death of the Galaxy Note will have found its successor.

Pros

  • Stunning brandish with fantastic particular and effulgence
  • Versatile camera system with impressive zoom
  • Adept low-light photographic camera performance
  • Fast charging
  • Promise of many years of updates

Cons

  • Bombardment life should be better
  • Design a step astern
  • You need to purchase the fast charger separately

Availability

  • UK
    RRP: £1149
  • United states
    RRP: $1199.99
  • Europe
    RRP: €1259

Fundamental Features


  • Huge display
    Massive half dozen.8-inch brandish with a 1440p resolution and seriously high brightness levels

  • High-end specs
    Exynos 2200, upwardly to 12GB and 1TB storage

  • S Pen included
    There’southward an Southward Pen stylus included and information technology fits inside the phone

Introduction

The Galaxy S22 Ultra is the acme handset in Samsung’s 2022 flagship range, but this telephone could take very easily been called the Milky way S22 Note.

After canning the cult-favourite Note series a few years ago, Samsung has been trying various ways of adding a few of the serial’ best traits into its other phones.

The Galaxy S21 Ultra, for example, was the first device not designated a Annotation to back up the sort-of-handy S Pen stylus – even if it was an additional accessory that didn’t live in the telephone itself.

With the Galaxy S22 Ultra, Samsung has gone in some other direction – and non 1 I tin can say I was expecting. The Galaxy S22 Ultra is basically just a next-gen Galaxy Note. It looks like a Annotation, has a slot for the S Pen similar a Annotation and carries across many of the features most would associate with a Note.

This is also the meridian-finish model of the Milky way S22 range and that is reflected in its cost. The base model, with 128GB storage and 8GB RAM, will retail for £1149. An extra £100 gets you 256GB of storage and 12GB RAM.

For £1329, storage rises to 512GB and for £1499, it rises again to 1TB. This puts information technology correct upward against the iPhone thirteen Pro Max, and at a similar toll signal I would await the Oppo Find X5 Pro to hit. This might end upwardly beingness one of the best phones of the twelvemonth, and it’ll certainly be 1 of the priciest.

Screen and Design

  • The biggest phone in the Galaxy S22 range
  • Also has the most avant-garde display
  • Bachelor in multiple colours, including a sleek burgundy

As the Ultra moniker implies, the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra is the biggest, heaviest and about characteristic-rich fellow member of the S22 family. It has a vi.eight-inch display (larger than the 6.6-inch screen on the Plus), a silo for the Southward Pen to dock and a stacked camera array on the back.

It also, predictably, picks upwards some of the highlights of the Milky way S22’southward pattern, including Armour Aluminium around the sides, Gorilla Drinking glass Victus+ on the front and back (Samsung says this is 12.5% tougher than the previous Victus) and, of course, an IP68 rating.

Samsung has done something quite strange with the overall look of this telephone. While the S21, S21 Plus and S21 Ultra had a vaguely like design, each with a camera module blended into the telephone’s design, the Galaxy S22 Ultra looks wildly dissimilar to the S22. It’s heavily rounded on the sides, with a not-existent camera module that allows the multitude of sensors to just sit by themselves.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra the back of the phone in black
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

Information technology is basically a refinement of the last Galaxy Note phone rather than an evolution of the design I loved on the Galaxy S21 Ultra. If you appreciated the Deoxyribonucleic acid of the Note line you’ll dear this – but for me, it feels similar a step backwards. Everything is a bit as well rounded and a fleck too boxy. My feelings softened afterwards using the phone for a few days, just I yet haven’t warmed to it as much as I did the S21 Ultra. The only thing I’d say is a truthful step frontward is the new shine, satin rear equally it doesn’t seem to ever pick up grimy fingerprints as much as past Samsung flagships.

The new design for the photographic camera sensors has them sticking out, so the telephone rocks a lot when you perch it on a tabular array. I’ve also found dust gets caught around the photographic camera sensors very easily when the phone has been in my pocket for prolonged periods.

It’southward a big, heavy and surprisingly wide device – though when you consider everything on offer that’s hardly a surprise. With the South Pen inserted, the phone weighs 229g and really needs to exist grasped with ii hands to be held comfortably. I am used to large phones – before this I had been using the 240g iPhone 13 Pro Max – but I was still taken ashamed past the hefty dimensions on offer here.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra next to the iPhone 13 Pro Max Pixel 6 Pro
Paradigm Credit (Trusted Reviews): Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra adjacent to the iPhone 13 Pro Max and Pixel vi Pro

My concluding build note revolves around the vibration motor. It’south but so… non-existent? I’ve missed dozens of notifications, even phone calls, because I simply can’t feel the haptic response. Fifty-fifty when the S22 Ultra is on a desk-bound, the tinny audio the vibration gives off feels similar the phone is on the other side of the office. Information technology’southward a different story with the general UI haptics though, every bit the soft vibration when you hit keys is very satisfying.

While I might take some concerns over the look, I am all-in on the brandish. The half dozen.8-inch OLED panel packs a 1440p resolution for pin-sharp details and can now ramp all the way down 1Hz to save battery life.

Open up up a game or start scrolling Twitter and that refresh rate jumps to 120Hz – and it really does await super smooth. Samsung has also added a 240hz sampling charge per unit into the Game Mode, platonic for titles similar online shooters and brawlers that require the fastest response possible.

To my eyes, the screen looks like i of, if not
the, best around. Colours pop without feeling pulp and detail is but unmatched. I loaded up Our Planet in HDR on Netflix and the colourful scenery looked stunning. I was immersed, which is maxim a lot considering this kind of content is usually all-time consumed on a whopping keen big TV.

Looking directly at the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

Aside from looking vivid and bright, the Dynamic OLED screen has a new feature chosen Vision Booster. Samsung says this pushes upwards detail and contrast in brighter situations, making it easier to see video content. This is certainly an interesting add-on for those who watch a lot of Netflix shows in sunny environments, though considering information technology’s very dreary here in the United kingdom of great britain and northern ireland information technology’s not something I could use much.

Brightness is some other item key to Samsung’s hype for this phone, and it deserves the build-up. While the elevation 1750 nits brightness will probable only be hit in specific HDR situations, you do have a lot of control over the levels of brightness. I could easily hit 770 nits in the Actress Brilliant mode, which is a very high number you’ll simply need sparingly.

Watching Our Planet in HDR on the Galaxy S22 Ultra
Epitome Credit (Trusted Reviews)

In terms of color, there are ii modes. I institute the Vivid mode to be the most accurate (97.4% DCI-P3, 99.8% sRGB), though in that location’s a natural option as well if yous prefer colours a little more muted.

The screen is fabricated to piece of work with the S Pen, which is now included with the telephone and slots away in a silo next to the USB-C port when non in use. Latency has been reduced from 9ms to two.8ms for more natural writing, and Samsung claims the software uses AI skills to predict what y’all’ll write adjacent.

The Due south Pen felt as adept as it did on previous Note phones and it’s very responsive. I tried but it’s well-nigh incommunicable to spot any lag betwixt the pen touching the display and the ink appearing. Popping it out and jotting down a shopping list or quick to-practice list remains fast and natural. For those that loved the S Pen, you’ll still beloved it here.

I am non convinced whether this phone needs an S Pen, though – but because the honey that little bit of plastic tends to receive I am certain many of you will disagree. The Note was always a niche device, appreciated by those who wanted a stylus. The S22 Ultra is meant to be Samsung’s true flagship phone for the consumer who wants the
best
screen and
best
photographic camera – I just don’t retrieve most want an S Pen as well. But, if you don’t want to apply it it’s fairly piece of cake to forget about and it doesn’t seem similar much was sacrificed to include information technology.

Drawing with the S Pen on the Galaxy S22 lUltra
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

Samsung seems to be focussing a lot on making the whole S22 range more eco-conscious. It has shrunk down the size of the boxes from last year, removed all plastic and committed to using recycled line-fishing nets in certain parts of the device.

Camera

  • Large focus on AI in all areas of the photographic camera
  • Four cameras on the dorsum
  • Expert RAW app for granular control

The camera setup is certainly the star of the Galaxy S22 Ultra, and Samsung clearly wants to rival the iPhone xiii Pro, Google Pixel 6 Pro and others for the title of the best camera phone. Samsung has done a very good task hither; the camera is brilliantly versatile, hands surpassing Apple tree and Google for zoom skills.

Taking a photo with the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra
Paradigm Credit (Trusted Reviews)

While information technology’south far from ever almost the actual tech on offer, Samsung is king when it comes to packing in megapixels and other high-terminate camera equipment into its phones. For example, the S22 Ultra uses a completely new 108-megapixel sensor on the back with an f/1.8 lens, Dual Pixel focussing and OIS.

Pictures from the main rear camera are good, though not a huge leap in quality from the S21 Ultra. Considering that was, and remains, i of the best photographic camera phones around this isn’t a huge result. Colours are rich and vibrant and particular is pin-precipitous – I would even say sure shots can look a little too abrupt, especially street photography where there are diverse details contesting for your attention.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra daylight sample main camera
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)
Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra detail and bokeh main camera
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews): There’southward a overnice natural bokeh
Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra ultra wide camera in daylight
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews): The ultrawide camera is good, though not much of an improvement over the last model

By default, it’ll combine multiple pixels from that 108MP sensor together, though yous can shoot at full-res if you want.

Next to this, in that location’s a 12MP ultra wide (f/2.two, 120-caste field of view) and a duo of 10-megapixel telephoto cameras. I of these packs 3x optical zoom, while the other ups information technology to 10x. If that’south not enough zoom, the Space Zoom feature returns, allowing upward to 100x Digital Zoom with the assistance of some AI Super Resolution Tech.

Zooming is where the S22 Ultra impresses. The capabilities on offer easily trounce the contest from Apple and Google. I’m not talking virtually hitting 100x – these shots still look grainy and generally are a mess – but at 10x and below the results are fantastic. I stood outside Trusted Reviews HQ and zoomed 10x towards the tip of The Shard and the resulting images are crisp and perfectly usable.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra 3x zoom
Prototype Credit (Trusted Reviews): 3x zoom looks neat
Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra 10x zoom into the shard
Epitome Credit (Trusted Reviews): 10x zoom retains plenty of detail
Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra 100x space zoom blurry details
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews): It can even go to 100x if you brand do with the blur

Around the front, at that place’s a 40-megapixel selfie camera that captures nice snaps with good peel tones and not too much overbearing sharpening or smoothing.

The theme of AI runs through a lot of what Samsung is doing with the photographic camera here. Information technology uses artificial intelligence in night photography to steady the camera when you’re shooting video. The tech worked nifty during testing, offering me very impressive and stable results; automatically switching the frame rate and altering the strength of the bokeh blur in portrait way as the situation required.

Auto frame snaps is some other AI focussed characteristic. It’s designed to shift the focus and zoom to fit more (or less) faces into your shots depending on the surroundings the photographic camera’southward in. This feels similar a proficient way to make sure people utilize all the bachelor cameras, without making them manually option betwixt them.

It’s like shooting fish in a barrel to spot the AI kicking into gear and it can lead to very obvious changes in lens and color tone that can be quite jarring. I was taking pictures of my dog Peach in lower-low-cal and the camera kept automatically switching betwixt regular and night modes, drastically altering the colours each fourth dimension. This is less obvious when information technology’s very nighttime and the camera knows the environs a niggling meliorate.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra high detiail in low light
Paradigm Credit (Trusted Reviews): This was taken in night surroundings, and the camera ups the brightness and retains item

Dark photography is a big focus with the camera. Samsung says the pixels within the 108-megapixel sensor are i.23x larger than those in the S21 Ultra, allowing more light into the sensor. Once more, the use of AI makes itself known, upping detail and reducing noise.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra very low light
Paradigm Credit (Trusted Reviews)
Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra main camera colours
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

Throughout my week with the phone, I have found the low-low-cal and nighttime shooting to be arguably the biggest photographic camera upgrade over the Galaxy S21 Ultra. The phone does a wonderful job at both retaining details in tough weather condition and ensuring that snaps that deserve to be inky nighttime are so.

Samsung is bringing more focus to its previously-announced Expert RAW app. Similar to the Pro app on Sony’s Xperia I flagship, this is a separate camera app that gives you far more granular control and the power to shoot in the RAW format. RAW, unlike the JPEG format phones typically shoot in, is uncompressed and allows peachy editors to wrangle a ameliorate final product out of an initial image. Unless you plan on spending time tweaking an image afterwards in an app similar Lightroom, you ‘re not really going to come across the true do good of RAW

I’yard not quite sure why this stuff, including control over white balance and ISO, can’t be built smartly into the main camera app – simply perhaps Samsung wants to keep that as uncomplicated as possible.

Performance

  • Option of chipset depends on region
  • Up to 12GB RAM and 1TB storage
  • Modest upgrades over the Galaxy S21

The chipset sitting at the heart of the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra will vary depending on the region. US buyers, for instance, will get the Snapdragon viii Gen one scrap from Qualcomm whereas those in the Uk get the Exynos 2200 variant. Both of these are built upon the 4nm architecture, pregnant they should be more efficient than the outgoing 5nm models.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra with the S Pen out
Epitome Credit (Trusted Reviews)

RAM options range from 8GB to 12GB, while storage ranges from 128GB to 1TB. The base of operations RAM level is a little lower than the S21 Ultra, just Samsung says this is negated by improved virtual RAM options. My review sample is the 12GB/256GB Exynos model, so I can’t comment on the performance of the 8GB RAM variant or the Snapdragon eight Gen i model.

As you’d expect there’s 5G support, plus Wi-Fi 6 and 6E connectivity for those with a supported router and UWB for devices that work with ultra wideband such as Samsung’s Smart Tag. Samsung is not bad at using the latest tech and standards and that’south very much at play here.

That’south the specs part out of the style, but how does the Galaxy S22 Ultra actually perform? For the well-nigh part, the updated chip offers a small upgrade over the approachable Exynos chip.

In that location are slight improvements in the scores achieved in synthetic benchmarks like Geekbench v and Antutu and a more than notable bump in 3D Marking’due south GPU tests. More than importantly, the S22 Ultra stays libation in these tests and seems to be able to push performance for a sustained period without whatsoever throttling. This will be great news for those who put constant hours into enervating titles similar Genshin Touch.

Scrolling Instagram on the S22 Ultra
Prototype Credit (Trusted Reviews)

With real-world utilize, the Galaxy S22 Ultra feels fast. Information technology tin can, predictably, handle games with ease and hit high settings without getting as well hot. Merely I take run into a few software-based bugs throughout my time with the phone. Apps often force quit, in that location’southward a small but noticeable lag when hit the camera shutter button, and frequently I become a black screen when unlocking the phone. Hopefully these bugs get squashed speedily.

Phone call quality and Wi-Fi performance are both good but speakers aren’t as rich equally those on the iPhone thirteen Pro Max. There remains no expandable storage, so choose wisely when you lot purchase.

Samsung’south One UI (based on Android 12) is a respectable Android pare. There are some of Android 12’s all-time features here, including a play on the Fabric You theming engine. I’m not a huge fan of the artful of 1 UI though, especially when compared to how slick Android now looks on a Pixel 6 Pro. The design just feels a bit basic without any real flair. Your opinion might vary though, and this really doesn’t have any issue on how the software works.

One UI is packed with features and it ticks a lot of boxes. The battery saver modes are excellent, you have a lot of control over performance and the updated Notes app adds in support for more language for its handwriting recognition.

One UI on the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

What’southward more of import though is that Samsung is seriously supporting this phone when information technology comes to updates. At that place’south a promise of five years of updates and four major Os updates – that means the S22 Ultra volition withal be supported when Android xvi rolls around. Considering how many large Android phones but go two major OS updates, this is huge news and shows that investment should concluding for a number of years.

Samsung Milky way S22 Ultra vs S21 Ultra: how practice the specs compare?

Screen Size

Chipset

RAM

Storage Capacity

Resolution

Size (Dimensions)

Rear Camera

Front Camera

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra

half dozen.8 inches

Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 / Exynos 2200

8GB

128GB

1440 x 3080

77.9 x 8.9 x 163.3 MM

108-megapixels

40-megapixels

Samsung Milky way S21 Ultra

vi.8 inches

Snapdragon 888 or Exynos 2100

12GB, 16GB

128GB, 512GB, 1TB

3220 x 1440

viii.ix x 75.6 x 165.1 MM

108MP + 10MP + 10MP + 12MP

40MP

Bombardment Life

  • 5000mAh bombardment
  • No charger included
  • Tin go a full charge in around an hour

I mentioned concerns nigh battery capacity in my easily on with the Galaxy S22, simply I didn’t have the same qualms here and I take generally found the endurance on par with Galaxy S21 Ultra. This is to say it’s good, but non exactly groundbreaking.

Inside the S22 Ultra at that place’s a 5000mAh cell, which is paired with an efficient screen and 4nm chipset for good battery life. Information technology doesn’t last anywhere most as long every bit the iPhone 13 Pro Max though and throughout my week with the phone, I have been charging information technology on a nightly basis after hitting the blood-red zone but before bed. Granted, I have been pushing the display’s brightness and keeping the 1440p setting enabled. Lower these and you tin stretch it farther.

There are a number of other bombardment saver modes too, each with a vast array of customisations like throttling performance, turning off 5G and automatically lowering the screen resolution. Play around with these and you’ll notice the best mix of performance and longevity to conform your needs.

Where the extra efficiency is most noticeable is with tasks that keep the screen on. I streamed an hour of Netflix in HDR at about 90% effulgence, and it tuckered x%. Drop the brightness to lx% (which remains very bright) and it took off only 6%. That’south impressive stuff and shows how important these adaptive screens can be.

There’s no charger supplied, though the Galaxy S22 Ultra can fast charge with both 25w and 45w plugs. I don’t take a dedicated Samsung charger, so for this review I used a standard Anker multi-port plug that supports the 45w standard. Using the included USB-C cable I was impressed with the speeds. A quick five minute charge gave me x%, while I hit 25% in 11 minutes. 25 minutes got me past 50% and I consistently hit 100% in around an hour.

15w Qi wireless is supported as well, as is Wireless Powershare for charging upward other devices like watches and earbuds wirelessly. 15w is fairly slow compared to wireless charging speeds achieved past devices like the OnePlus 10 Pro and information technology remains a tedious and inefficient way to juice up. Yet, it’s better to accept it than not.

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Should you purchase it?

You don’t desire sacrifices:
This is a phone that packs everything possible. From the display to the camera and the internals this is a big phone for those who want all the features possible.

You’re concerned near size:
This phone is big and it takes a strong grasp to comfortably hold it.

Last Thoughts

If you lot’ve been lamenting Samsung’s conclusion to impale the Note serial then the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra is well and truly its spiritual successor. From the rounded design to the internal South Pen, this is a Notation phone in all but proper noun.

While I am a little disappointed well-nigh the change in design, information technology’south hard not to curiosity at everything going on here – at that place aren’t whatever sacrifices made hither. The screen is a technical marvel, the camera is seriously versatile and the software feature packed. In that location’s even an Southward Pen crammed in.

The internals might non stand for huge year-on-yr improvements and the camera system has quirks in the mode it uses AI, but if you’re afterward a true powerhouse and one of the all-time Android phones you won’t exist disappointed.

I doubt there will be many Android phones in 2022 that rival the Galaxy S22 Ultra for pure tech – only I as well uncertainty many, iPhone 14 aside, will hit this high price either.

How we exam

We exam every mobile phone we review thoroughly. We use industry standard tests to compare features properly and we use the phone as our principal device over the review period. Nosotros’ll e’er tell yous what we observe and we never, always, have money to review a product.

Used as main telephone for eight days

Tested the photographic camera in diverse environs

Mixture of benchmarks and real-earth employ

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FAQs

Practice you lot have to purchase the Southward Pen separately?

No, the South Pen is included with the S22 Ultra – just like the Note series.

Tin you lot expand the storage with Micro SD?

There is no expandable storage here. But, you tin can choose between 128, 256, 512GB and 1TB options.

How many software updates is Samsung promising?

Samsung is saying you’ll get five years of updates, including four years of major OS updates.

Trusted Reviews test data

We run all the phones we review through certain tests to go alongside the real-earth data.

1 hour music straming (online)

Time from 0-l% accuse

Time from 0-100% charge

one hour music streaming (offline)

Max brightness

thirty minute gaming (intensive)

ane hour video playback (Netflix, HDR)

30 minute gaming (low-cal)

Geekbench 5 multi core

Geekbench five single core

DCI-P3

Adobe RGB

sRGB

3D Marker – Sling Shot Extreme

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra

two %

23 Min

59 min

1 %

770 nits

6 %

3637

1179

97.4 %

90.two %

99.8 %

Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra

3 %

30 Min

100 min

3 %

x %

7 %

9 %

3148

1029

7321

Total specs

Here are all the most important specs for the Samsung Milky way S22 Ultra.

Uk RRP

Us RRP

European union RRP

Manufacturer

Screen Size

Storage Capacity

Rear Photographic camera

Front end Camera

Video Recording

IP rating

Battery

Wirless charging

Fast Charging

Size (Dimensions)

Weight

Operating Organisation

Release Date

Start Reviewed Engagement

Resolution

HDR

Refresh Rate

Ports

Chipset

RAM

Colours

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra

£1149

$1199.99

€1259

Samsung

6.8 inches

128GB

108-megapixels

40-megapixels

Yes

IP68

5000 mAh

Yeah

Yes

77.9 x 8.9 x 163.iii MM

229 G

Android 12, OneUI 4.1

2022

17/02/2022

1440 x 3080

Yes

120 Hz

USB-C

Snapdragon eight Gen 1 / Exynos 2200

8GB

Burgundy, Gree, Black, White

Jargon buster

mAh

An abbreviation for milliampere-hr and a fashion to express the capacity of batteries, particularly smaller ones in phones. In nigh cases the higher the mAh, the longer the battery will last simply this isn’t always the case.

5G

Offering faster download and upload speeds when compared to 4G. Nifty for game streaming and HDR video playback. Not supported everywhere however and speeds vary wildly.

Qi Wireless Charging

The virtually common format for wireless charging and the one supported by the majority of devices. Accuse speeds vary a lot by the phone.

Source: https://www.trustedreviews.com/reviews/samsung-galaxy-s22-ultra

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