Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra review

Despite the odd controversy, few would deny that Samsung Galaxy S Ultra phones take some of the best photographs around — even if that is somewhat wasted on those of us who fill our camera rolls with very similar-looking pictures of cats. 

But after treading water for a couple of years, it looks like the upcoming Galaxy S24 Ultra might be getting a substantial upgrade to its secondary camera.

While it’s the 200MP main sensor that gets most of the love on the current model, the pretty reliable leaker Ice Universe thinks that the optical zoom lens will get the attention of Samsung’s engineers this time around. It’s currently a 10MP camera with 3x optical zoom, and the tipster believes that will become a 50MP version next year. Lovely stuff.

Yes, there’s more to life (and, more importantly, cameras) than megapixel counts, but it would make sense for this to be part of a bigger sensor upgrade. And while the Galaxy S23 Ultra is capable of a so-called 100x space zoom, it’s this shorter-range stuff that I personally get more use out of, and I imagine other smartphone users are the same. 

Still, it’s worth reflecting that we’re a long way from the Samsung Galaxy S24 phones being released. If past schedules are anything to go by, February seems likely, and plenty can change between now and then. Especially when there’s no real consensus around leakers about what upgrades — if any — the S24 Ultra’s camera array will receive. 

Indeed, Ice Universe previously said that the phone wouldn’t be getting much of an upgrade to the telephoto lens, as recently as June.

Another leaker, Tech_Reve originally said that the S24 Ultra would get a 3-10x variable folded telephoto lens, only to backtrack on the claim two months later. Yet another source believes that Samsung is planning a 1in sensor, but nobody has backed this up at the time of writing.

In other words, there’s plenty of hearsay about what the S24 Ultra camera will and won’t be like when it arrives in six months’ time. All we can say with any certainty is it’ll be pretty darned good — unless Samsung decides to become the first company in history to downgrade its flagship cameras.